Praise Is Comely. 10/22/2014 (Morning thought)

Psalms 147:1 Praise ye the Lord: for it is good to sing praises unto our God; for it is pleasant; and praise is comely. 3 He healeth the broken in heart, and bindeth up their wounds.

This passage of scripture teaches us that it is good to sing praises to The Most High, for praise belongs to God alone, and the very act is necessary and beneficial to our well-being. When we praise God with joy and with the understanding, He is moved by our sincere appreciation of who He is and what He has done for us, and our praise and worship can at times cause The Lord to do that which might have never been done, had we held our peace. It was one such situation that occurred when the children of Israel were encompassed by heathen armies that had assembled to bring about their total destruction, and they prayed earnestly to God for deliverance from their foes.

At this time Jehoshaphat was king and when he got wind of the deadly plots of his enemies, he assembled the entire nation for a season of praise and prayer, recounting the promises of God to protect and defend His people. In response to their earnest entreaties The Lord sent a message to them, stating that He took the threat personally, and would engage His mighty power in their behalf. Let's read:

2nd Chronicles 20:1  It came to pass after this also, that the children of Moab, and the children of Ammon, and with them other beside the Ammonites, came against Jehoshaphat to battle. 3 And Jehoshaphat feared, and set himself to seek the Lord, and proclaimed a fast throughout all Judah. 4 And Judah gathered themselves together, to ask help of the Lord: even out of all the cities of Judah they came to seek the Lord. 14 Then upon Jahaziel" .....  "came the Spirit of the Lord in the midst of the congregation; 15 And he said, Hearken ye, all Judah, and ye inhabitants of Jerusalem, and thou king Jehoshaphat, Thus saith the Lord unto you, Be not afraid nor dismayed by reason of this great multitude; for the battle is not yours, but God's. 17 Ye shall not need to fight in this battle: set yourselves, stand ye still, and see the salvation of the Lord with you, O Judah and Jerusalem: fear not, nor be dismayed; to morrow go out against them: for the Lord will be with you.

When this message of assurance was given them, Jehoshaphat and the entire congregation bowed their heads and worshiped God, but it was when they arose the next morning and started to sing His praises with instruments and chanting, that The Lord went to work in a hurry and utterly discomfited the entire army of aliens who had sought the destruction of the Jews. Let's read:

2nd Chronicles 20:21 And when he had consulted with the people, he appointed singers unto the Lord, and that should praise the beauty of holiness, as they went out before the army, and to say, Praise the Lord; for his mercy endureth for ever. 22 And when they began to sing and to praise, the Lord set ambushments against the children of Ammon, Moab, and mount Seir, which were come against Judah; and they were smitten. 23 For the children of Ammon and Moab stood up against the inhabitants of mount Seir, utterly to slay and destroy them: and when they had made an end of the inhabitants of Seir, every one helped to destroy another. 24 And when Judah came toward the watch tower in the wilderness, they looked unto the multitude, and, behold, they were dead bodies fallen to the earth, and none escaped.

This stunning victory given them by The Lord contains very important lessons for us living in the 21st century, for we are often saddled with difficulties and problems brought about by the enemy of all righteousness, and like Jehoshaphat and his people we may be bewildered as to what we should do or what course of action we should pursue. It is at times like these that we should recount the merciful dealings of God towards us in times past, and it is comely in these situations to also sing His praises. This has the effect of lifting the clouds that darken our day, and it also revives hope and courage when all other human efforts have failed.

A young girl once became very ill and was taken to the hospital, only to be diagnosed with a very deadly disease, because of which the prognosis given by her doctors was very dismal at best. However they tried relentlessly to save her young life, but she kept on deteriorating to the point where all that could be done to save her, and all the modern medicines and techniques were thoroughly exhausted. Finally in utter despair she called for her sister and requested that she sing songs to her. Her sister complied day after day, and the young girl made a complete recovery through the grace and power of God.

When we are in straightened circumstances and darkness looms on the horizon, let us remember that praise is comely, and if we dwell on the sacred history of God's dealings with us in the past, we will be strengthened and fortified to face and overcome the challenges of the future, for there is no problem that God cannot solve, and no foe that He cannot defeat. We therefore end with a passage of scripture which should be an encouragement to us in our times of perplexity, because the same God who fought for Jehoshaphat and his people, will again fight for us and deliver in ways we know not of. Let's read:

Psalms 56:1  Be merciful unto me, O God: for man would swallow me up; he fighting daily oppresseth me. 2 Mine enemies would daily swallow me up: for they be many that fight against me, O thou most High. 3 What time I am afraid, I will trust in thee. 4 In God I will praise his word, in God I have put my trust; I will not fear what flesh can do unto me. 11 In God have I put my trust: I will not be afraid what man can do unto me.

May God add His blessing to the study of His word. God bless!