How often have you heard this? It is a very common phrase among religious people. People with particularly strong religous beliefs saying "Praise the Lord" has become as common or even more common than Bugs Bunny saying 'What's up Doc?' It just comes to them as naturally as breathing.
Now, since this page is under the topic "Doctrines," you might wonder: does the Bible teach that this is wrong? Does it teach that one should not praise God? As Paul says in 1 Corinthians 6:15- "Never may that happen!" (New World Translation)
To praise God is indeed something that God wishes us to do, and to do as naturally as we breathe. One of the most common methods of praising God is to simply say, "Praise God" or "Praise the Lord." Another common way of praising God comes by singing hymns or songs. All of this is quite proper, as can be attested to by the inclusion of the book of Psalms in the Bible. There are also many other scriptures that will back up the use of song as a way of praising God, such as:
2 Samuel 22:50 Therefore I will praise you, O LORD, among the nations; I will sing praises to your name. (NIV)
1 Chronicles 16:9 Sing to him, sing praise to him; tell of all his wonderful acts. (NIV)
Hebrews 2:12 He says, "I will declare your name to my brothers; in the presence of the congregation I will sing your praises."
James 5:13 Is any one of you in trouble? He should pray. Is anyone happy? Let him sing songs of praise.
As we can see, singing songs to praise God is quite proper. God certainly looks favorably on those who sing hymns and praise Him through song. But again- is this all there is?
Not by a long shot.
There is yet another way of praising God; one which He looks upon even more favorably than he looks upon verbal praise. This is praising God through action.
James 2:24 You see that a person is justified by what he does and
not by faith alone.
James 2:26 As the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without deeds is dead. (NIV)
Faith and works go hand in hand- just like "Love and Marriage" (as the song goes), you can't have one without the other. Good solid faith produces good works. Good works, in the name of the Lord, are the best way of Praising Him and His name. How? Good works, in the name of the Lord, spread the word around that there are people who are striving to be righteous, and follow God, and live up to the perfect standards He has set for us. They make people who have ears to listen and eyes to see, understand that God is righteous, He loves and cares about us, and He seeks to adopt righteous people into His spiritual Family. To say these things to others is to praise God.
Leviticus 19:24 In the fourth year all its fruit will be
holy, an offering of praise to the LORD. (NIV)
This scripture refers to the planting of any new fruit tree, how for three years its fruit is forbidden and not to be eaten. On the fourth year, its fruit became holy, and the fruit became suitable as an offering to God, which is viewable as praising God. On the fifth year, the fruit is suitable for eating.
Hebrews 13:15 Through Jesus, therefore, let us
continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise-- the fruit of lips that confess his name.
This scripture requires a little more insight for understanding. Note that Paul is saying that we should offer a "sacrifice" of praise. A sacrifice is usually an offering made unto God, out of our resources, time, energy, or so forth, with no compensation to be sought or expected by us. But then Paul says "The fruit of lips that confess his name." The key words here are not "The fruit of lips," which suggest verbal praise through words and hymns, but "that confess his name," which clearly means preaching the truth of the Gospel and the sovereignty of Jesus over all but God, to those who have ears and can listen. This is backed up by:
Romans 10:9 That if you confess with your mouth,
"Jesus is Lord," and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead,
you will be saved. (NIV)
Matthew 10:32 "Everyone therefore who shall
confess Me before men, I will also confess him before My Father who is in
One more for good measure :)
Phillipians 2:11 And every tongue confess that
Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. (NIV)
There are others, but these shall be left for you to seek out on your own. The purpose of the Bible Probe is to encourage people to study the Bible.
So those who wish to praise God through words and song, are free and even encouraged to continue to do so, for these things are considered good by God. But for those who find themselves tongue-tied when presented with songs or hymns, there is good news. One should praise God through deeds and good works that are the fruit and partner of faith in Jesus. With these two things, one makes high praise to God, and is on the way to joining God's spiritual Family, the ultimate goal of every Christian man and woman.
Proverbs 27:11 Be wise, my son, and bring joy to my heart; then I can answer anyone who treats me with contempt. (NIV)
Praise Jah, you people!
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