When our daughter was born, I was a new believer and keenly aware of God's miracle of new life, both physically and spiritually.
Baby Nicole had the sweetest habit of cooing while she slept. And when she accompanied me to my weekly Bible study a week after her birth, her coos were sweet background "music" to our prayers.
Psalm 8 says God ordained "the praise of children and infants," and I'm convinced Nicole's baby coos were just that.
When Christ entered Jerusalem, He said that if the crowds were silent, the rocks would cry out (Luke 19:37-40).
If rocks ... why not cooing babies, chirping birds, humming cicadas, rolling ocean waves and rustling leaves?
Psalm 8 also says the praise of infants silences God's enemies. If baby coos shut the mouth of Satan, let's do our part to do the same.
Why not set a timer today and praise God every hour? And if you think of it, please pray for me. I will be traveling to Budapest, Hungary today, and I am going to try to incorporate praise into my 12 hour trip as much as possible.
1. What can we learn about praise from the following verses?
1 Peter 4:11: If anyone speaks, they should do so as one who speaks the very words of God. If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power forever and ever. Amen.
Psalm 100: Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth. 2 Worship the Lord with gladness; come before him with joyful songs. 3 Know that the Lord is God. It is he who made us, and we are his; we are his people, the sheep of his pasture. 4 Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name. 5 For the Lord is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations.
Please complete the study before reading these insights.
1. 1 Peter 4:11: This passage makes me think of a 1-minute devotion I wrote a few months back called "Feet, Not Feelings." We narrow our definition of praise and worship to Sunday morning in church. But, as this verse says, our speech and service are also a source of praise to God.
Psalm 100: In the 1970's, it was popular to sing praise songs taken directly from the words of Scripture and Psalm 100 was one of the first songs I learned as a new Christian.
It is rich with meaning, and I encourage you to memorize this short Psalm.
v.2: Christians have reason to be joyful in the Lord, no matter what else is happening around them.
v.3: true worship, thankfulness and praise come from a pure understanding that God is our Creator and Shepherd.
v. 4: These are two steps to drawing closer to God. We come in the gates of His presence as we thank Him, but we go right into His courts when we praise Him. While the meanings of thanksgiving and praise overlap, praise is a higher form of admiration. For example:
Thanksgiving: "Thank you, Lord, that you have given me life and breath."
Praise: "Dear Lord, you are a marvelous Creator, the Giver of Life."
copyright 2014, Gail Burton Purath, BiteSizeBibleStudy.com
All Scripture NIV unless otherwise noted