November 23, 2017

Hebrews 13:15 ~ A Sacrifice of Praise

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{This final week of 2015 we will be re-visiting some of my personal favorite themes on which our wonderful writers have shared with us throughout this past year.  I hope that you (as I was, too!) will be encouraged and reminded of God’s faithfulness and loving care through their inspired words.}

Through Him, therefore, let us constantly and at all times
offer up to God a sacrifice of praise,
which is the fruit of lips that thankfully acknowledge
and confess and glorify His name.

Hebrews 13:15

*  ~  ♥  ~  ✞  ~  ♥  ~  *

Oh, what encouragement I have received this week as I’ve read daily through the Seeking Him devotional!  (You, too?)  Ann, Ahmee, Clella, Cynda, and Tina have each written devotionals reminding me of the importance of offering my praise—a sacrifice of praise—to our wonderful Father God and drawing me closer to the One Who I do seek to praise and glorify!

In The Fruit Of Lips, Cynda took a good in-depth look at just what a ‘sacrifice of praise’ is and asked a really good question…along with a few answers she found.

“But why are we compelled (Hebrews 13:15) to do it ‘constantly and at all times’?  Here are just a few of the reasons I found:

  • it glorifies God and pleases Him
  • (because of) His enduring love and goodness
  • because Jesus did
  • it is our shared inheritance

But, I think my favorite reason for giving thanks is to tell others and remind myself of all He has done in my life.“

Then, Ann gave us some great reasons in Praise At All Times just WHY we praise God—

  • for what He has done (Psalm 9:11)
  • a four-fold reason— because we are “…a chosen people, a loyal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God….” (1 Peter 2:9)
  • and, as a commandment (Psalm 63:7)

She wrote, “So we are all to praise God; let us make a choice of doing so in the morning …in the afternoon …and in the evening time!”

Clella shared a wonderful translation of Hebrews 13:15 with us in Proclaim Allegiance To His Name.  She wrote,

“The New Living Translation says it this way:

Therefore, let us offer through Jesus
a continual sacrifice of praise to God,
proclaiming our allegiance to His Name.

The phase ‘proclaiming our allegiance to His Name’ popped out at me.  It sounded so different than the other translations that refer to ‘the fruit of lips that confess His Name.’  I just had to do a little research to understand what this verse is really saying.

– to “confess” God’s Name is to declare, state, acknowledge His Name
– to “proclaim allegiance” is to announce publicly, or to declare something one considers important with due emphasis, which in this case would be one’s loyalty or commitment of a subordinate to a superior.”

In Verbal Sacrifice, Ahmee brought us back to the central element in Hebrews 13:15 of ‘sacrifice.’  She reminded us of reasons we have to offer our sacrifice of praise.

“Those days when you don’t feel like giving praise are the days when praise is a sacrifice. When we praise God even in our less-than-favorable moments we are saying to Him — and those around us —

  • God is our God
  • we trust Him with our lives
  • we trust in Someone bigger than us
  • we have the Almighty on our side to fight for us”

And in Giving Thanks, Tina encouraged us to remember how abundantly blessed we are here in the USA.

“The Pilgrims were so grateful to have a land to call their own and the freedom to worship God. After such a hard crossing and a hard harvest, they decided to celebrate and praise God for what they had. Let us do the same. Continuous praise should be on our lips and in our thoughts.

Holy, Holy, Holy

psalmshymnsspiritualsongskjv

Holy, holy, holy
Holy, holy, holy
Holy is the Lord God Almighty
Worthy to receive glory
Worthy to receive honor
Worthy to receive all our praise today

Praise Him
Praise Him and lift Him up
Praise Him
Exalt His name forever 

 Alvin Slaughter (along with the Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir)
written by Joe Wood, John Dykes, Reginald Heber

 *   ~   ♥   ~   ✞   ~  ♥   ~   *

One day we will perfectly, completely, totally, truly exalt and praise and honor and glorify the Great I Am forever and ever…for all eternity!  Oh, isn’t it going to be so AWEsome?!!!?  Then we will be just like the heavenly host who now are around God’s throne.

…and day and night they never stop saying, HOLY, HOLY, HOLY
is the Lord God Almighty, Who was and Who is and Who is to come.
And whenever the living creatures offer glory and honor and thanksgiving to Him
Who sits on the throne, Who lives forever and ever,
The twenty-four elders fall prostrate before Him Who is sitting on the throne,
and they worship Him Who lives forever and ever;
and they throw down their crowns before the throne, crying out,
Worthy are You, our Lord and God,
to receive the glory and the honor and dominion,
for You created all things;
by Your will they were [brought into being] and were created.
Revelation 4:8-11

But even now we can exalt and praise and honor and glorify Him!!!  We have our Lord’s example…even He did not seek to bring glory to Himself!  Jesus lived His life on this earth to bring glory to His Father.

Jesus replied, “If I glorify myself, my glory means nothing.
My Father, whom you claim as your God, is the one who glorifies Me.
John 8:54

Jesus also taught His followers that they, too, could glorify God.

You are the salt of the earth.
But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again?  It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot.
You are the light of the world.
A town built on a hill cannot be hidden.
Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl.
Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house.
In the same way, let your light shine before others,
that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.
Matthew 5:14-16

Just like you, I so yearn for my walk in this world to bring attention—to bring glory—to the Great I AM!  My prayer every day is that others will see Jesus in me, and that anything good or righteous I might do will glorify the God that I love.  As His child, everywhere I go He is with me.  But not always do my actions {or my words} prove that I am a child of God.

God will be glorified through our lives in the big, and the small, things as we live and breathe with His character within us.  By His grace we have been enabled to love with His love…to show mercy as He shows mercy…to forgive…to give grace.

These are things that bring Him honor and glorify Him:

  • when a wife chooses to speak words that respect her husband
  • when we sit with our children and grandchildren reading to them out of their little Bible story books teaching them about their heavenly Father
  • when we go on a missions trip to a far-away country (or a nearby town!) and share the Truth of the Gospel of Jesus with young women who have lived with no hope
  • when we take a meal to neighbors who have just added a new baby to their family
  • when we take part in our church’s community-wide VBS program and minister to a little girl who has never heard about Jesus until this week
  • when we are in a long line at the grocery store and ask the mom with a cart overflowing with food AND 3 children to get in line ahead of us
  • when we go sit on the porch to chat (and listen) with an elderly neighbor whose family rarely comes to visit

And so I ask…
today will Almighty God, the Great I AM,
be glorified with you or without you? (And me, too….)

Let’s practice what we will be doing forever…and ever…and ever!

The Sacrifice Of Praise

seekingHimthanksgivinggraphic

 

Through Him, therefore, let us constantly and at all times
offer up to God a sacrifice of praise,
which is the fruit of lips
that thankfully acknowledge and confess and glorify His name.
Hebrews 13:15 AMP

Lord, I lift a song of worship
For Your glory and Your grace
Let my heart reveal all my words fail to say
Lord, receive this sacrifice of praise

On the mountain in the valley
As I wait in my secret place
I will trust trust in the name of the Lord
Now receive this sacrifice of praise
Now receive this sacrifice of praise

You’re my shield, You’re my shelter
From the storm and from the rain
Cover me beneath the shadow of Your wings
Lord, receive this sacrifice of praise

Hallelujah, hallelujah
Hallelujah to Your name
For all You’ve done
You are and evermore will be
Lord, receive this sacrifice of praise

 

“I AM” Week 2 – Day 5: Glory of The LORD

One day we will perfectly, completely, totally, truly exalt and praise and honor and glorify the Great I Am forever and ever…for all eternity!  Oh, isn’t it going to be so AWEsome?!!!?  Then we will be just like the heavenly host who now are around God’s throne.

…and day and night they never stop saying, HOLY, HOLY, HOLY
is the Lord God Almighty, Who was and Who is and Who is to come.
And whenever the living creatures offer glory and honor and thanksgiving to Him
Who sits on the throne, Who lives forever and ever,
The twenty-four elders fall prostrate before Him Who is sitting on the throne,
and they worship Him Who lives forever and ever;
and they throw down their crowns before the throne, crying out,
Worthy are You, our Lord and God, to receive the glory and the honor and dominion,
for You created all things; by Your will they were [brought into being] and were created.
Revelation 4:8-11

But even now we can exalt and praise and honor and glorify Him!!!

Our author writes in the I AM study,

As we seek God, He places the need to conform to His character within us.  As we walk out our life in the world, we take Him with us.  He is glorified or shamed, depending on how we carry ourselves.  It is our responsibility to make sure God is glorified through our life …God will be glorified with or without you….”

Jesus our Lord lived His life as He walked on this earth to bring glory to His Father.  Even He did not bring glory to Himself!

Jesus replied, “If I glorify myself, my glory means nothing.
My Father, whom you claim as your God, is the one who glorifies me.
John 8:54

Jesus also taught His followers that they, too, could glorify God.

“You are the salt of the earth.  But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again?  It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot.  You are the light of the world.  A town built on a hill cannot be hidden.  Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl.  Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house.  In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.”
Matthew 5:14-16

Just like you, I so yearn for my walk in this world to bring attention—to bring glory—to the Great I AM!  My prayer every day is that others will see Jesus in me, and that anything good or righteous I might do will glorify the God that I love.  As His child, everywhere I go…He is with me.  But not always do my actions {or my words} prove that I am a child of God.

God will be glorified through our lives in the big, as well as the small, things as we live and breathe with His character within us.  By His grace we have been enabled to love with His love…to show mercy just as He shows us mercy…to forgive…to give grace.

These are things that bring Him honor and glorify Him:

  • when a wife chooses to speak words that respect her husband
  • when we sit with our children and grandchildren reading to them out of their little Bible story books teaching them about their heavenly Father
  • when we go on a missions trip to a far-away country and share the Truth of the Gospel of Jesus with young women who have lived with no hope
  • when we take a meal to neighbors who have just added a new baby to their family
  • when we take part in our church’s community-wide VBS program and minister to a little girl who has never heard about Jesus until this week
  • when we are in a long line at the grocery store and ask the mom with a cart overflowing with food AND 3 children to get in line ahead of us
  • when we go sit on the porch to chat (and listen) with an elderly neighbor whose family rarely comes to visit

So I ask you…today will Almighty God, the Great I AM, be glorified with you or without you?

Let’s practice what we will be doing forever…and ever…and ever!

Praying for each of you!

♥  coleen

*****

Let’s Pray:

Almighty God, You deserve all the honor, all the glory, all the praises that our hearts could ever hold and our voices could ever speak!  There is NONE like You!  You WILL be glorified throughout all eternity!  We so desire to glorify You here and now, Father!  Today, Lord, may our words and our actions bring glory to You as we obey and love You with our whole hearts, souls, minds, and all our strength.  May the care that You give and the needs You provide for in our lives draw others to You!  May the world glorify You, Lord, as we live out our lives manifesting Your character.  May the light that You have placed in us shine into the darkness of the world bringing hope to the lost.  And may it be clear that it is never ‘us’ but always of You!  We love You…we praise You…we glorify and exalt You!

Amen.