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Let Us Praise the LORD - A Community of Praise

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Psalm 145 beautifully lays out the Reality, Responsibility, the Reason, and the Return for letting PRAISE of our Great God be the major theme of our lips. A community of praise is compelling.

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Psalm 145

Psalm 145 ESV
A Song of Praise. Of David. 1 I will extol you, my God and King, and bless your name forever and ever. 2 Every day I will bless you and praise your name forever and ever. 3 Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised, and his greatness is unsearchable. 4 One generation shall commend your works to another, and shall declare your mighty acts. 5 On the glorious splendor of your majesty, and on your wondrous works, I will meditate. 6 They shall speak of the might of your awesome deeds, and I will declare your greatness. 7 They shall pour forth the fame of your abundant goodness and shall sing aloud of your righteousness. 8 The Lord is gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love. 9 The Lord is good to all, and his mercy is over all that he has made. 10 All your works shall give thanks to you, O Lord, and all your saints shall bless you! 11 They shall speak of the glory of your kingdom and tell of your power, 12 to make known to the children of man your mighty deeds, and the glorious splendor of your kingdom. 13 Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and your dominion endures throughout all generations. The Lord is faithful in all his words and kind in all his works. 14 The Lord upholds all who are falling and raises up all who are bowed down. 15 The eyes of all look to you, and you give them their food in due season. 16 You open your hand; you satisfy the desire of every living thing. 17 The Lord is righteous in all his ways and kind in all his works. 18 The Lord is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth. 19 He fulfills the desire of those who fear him; he also hears their cry and saves them. 20 The Lord preserves all who love him, but all the wicked he will destroy. 21 My mouth will speak the praise of the Lord, and let all flesh bless his holy name forever and ever.

MAIN IDEA

CREATION’S DESIGN

It is intricately woven into the design of every created human being to Praise the LORD. Whether one desires to or not is not the issue at stake. Your opinion of God’s greatness in no way affects the reality of His greatness.
You were born to love Him,
You were born to know Him,
You were born to walk in His ways,
You were born to glorify God and enjoy Him forever.
The final note of the final Psalm rings familiar here tonight, no doubt, but let it sink in…Psa 150.6
NO SLIDE
Psalm 150:6 ESV
6 Let everything that has breath praise the Lord! Praise the Lord!

THE CHURCHS ADVANTAGE

Q: What is normal behavior for the man or woman/boy or girl who loves the LORD with all his/her heart, mind, soul, and strength? Adrian Rogers is quoted as saying, “The thing that makes the church distinct…is that she’s different!”

It is a normal thing for someone who love the LORD and who has set their affection on Him to bless His name, sing His praises, meditate on His goodness, and speak often of Him.

APPROACHING THIS PSALM

The devotional life of Jesus Christ was consumed with the Psalms. You see it when He teaches, you hear it when He prays, all heard it quoted from the cross! A deep life of worship is NOT POSSIBLE outside of a great deal of time in the Psalms.
The Psalms are divided into 5 books.

I. Book 1 (Pss. 1–41)

Yahwistic psalms of David (3–41)

II. Book 2 (Pss. 42–72)

Psalms of the sons of Korah (42–49)

Elohistic psalms of David (51–72)

III. Book 3 (Pss. 73–89)

Psalms of Asaph (73–83)

Psalms of the sons of Korah (84–88)

IV. Book 4 (Pss. 90–106)

Psalms of God’s kingship (93–99)

V. Book 5 (Pss. 107–150)

Hallelujah thanksgiving psalms (111–118)

Songs of Ascent (120–134)

Tonight we find ourselves in book 5 - Songs of Ascent to the Temple - the Presence of God.
SUMMARIZE THIS NOTE...

The strophical structure, like the progress of thought, is rather irregular. This is possibly due to the acrostic character of the poem, the first letters of the verses following the order of the Hebrew alphabet. Nun only is absent; for what reason does not appear.

this Psalm is not consumed with
the method of praise
the one praising
David immediately makes God the object of this Psalm of Praise.

1. REALITY: God’s People Praise the LORD

Psa 145.1-3
Psalm 145:1–3 ESV
1 I will extol you, my God and King, and bless your name forever and ever. 2 Every day I will bless you and praise your name forever and ever. 3 Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised, and his greatness is unsearchable.
NOTE THE TEXT
Notice the immediate surrender as the Psalm opens.
I will enthusiastically praise
MY GOD
MY KING
Question: Do your lips proclaim that He is your God? Does your life declare that He is your King?
One Bible Scholar, reflecting on this passage writes,

It is an act worthy of severe punishment for a man to limit God’s love and mercy, and wantonly to exclude himself from their influence.

NO SLIDE
Psalm 141:3 ESV
Set a guard, O Lord, over my mouth; keep watch over the door of my lips!

2. RESPONSIBILITY: God’s People Talk to one another about HIS Greatness

Psa 145.4-7
Psalm 145:4–7 ESV
4 One generation shall commend your works to another, and shall declare your mighty acts. 5 On the glorious splendor of your majesty, and on your wondrous works, I will meditate. 6 They shall speak of the might of your awesome deeds, and I will declare your greatness. 7 They shall pour forth the fame of your abundant goodness and shall sing aloud of your righteousness.

QUESTION: What are the LORD’s people consumed with?

What dominates their interactions?

What/Who is the chief topic of conversations?

It is young and old and in between, crossing generational boundaries and declaring to one another
His works
His mighty acts
His Glorious splendor of His Majesty
His Might of his Awesome Deeds
His greatness
His fame
His abundant goodness
His righteousness
Notice the normal methods employed corporately here:
commend - in a manner worthy of His name
declare - to make visible things otherwise not (“you may not know this, but here’s what the LORD has done in me…”)
meditation - go over carefully in one’s mind (roll over)
speak - use Words!
pour forth - gush / eager to celebrate
sing aloud - cry out / sing with joy
illustrate singing faces
MATTHEW HENRY WRITES OF THIS JOYOUS RESPONSIBILITY...

His saints bless Him, for they collect the rent and tribute of praise from the inferior creatures, and pay it into the treasury above. All God’s works praise Him, as the beautiful building praises the builder, or the well-drawn picture praises the painter. But His saints bless Him as the children of prudent, tender parents rise up and call them blessed. Of all God’s works, His saints, the workmanship of His grace, the first-fruits of His creatures have most reason to bless Him.

JUST IMAGINE THE REACTION TO THIS TYPE OF COMMUNITY, FROM SOMEONE WHO DOESN’T KNOW THE LORD PERSONALLY.

I’m not setting the bar for super-saints here…I’m just showing you the joyful responsibility we have among this body to make sure that the main theme of our discussions ON and OFF campus IS THE MAIN THEME OF OUR LIVES…OUR GOD AND KING!

3. REASON: Who is the LORD…that He should be praised?

Psalm 145:8–20 ESV
The Lord is gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love. The Lord is good to all, and his mercy is over all that he has made. All your works shall give thanks to you, O Lord, and all your saints shall bless you! They shall speak of the glory of your kingdom and tell of your power, to make known to the children of man your mighty deeds, and the glorious splendor of your kingdom. Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and your dominion endures throughout all generations. The Lord is faithful in all his words and kind in all his works. The Lord upholds all who are falling and raises up all who are bowed down. The eyes of all look to you, and you give them their food in due season. You open your hand; you satisfy the desire of every living thing. The Lord is righteous in all his ways and kind in all his works. The Lord is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth. He fulfills the desire of those who fear him; he also hears their cry and saves them. The Lord preserves all who love him, but all the wicked he will destroy.

Not much exposition needed here…this is not an exhaustive list…but enough to demonstrate HIS WORTHINESS. In fact, if this were all that he was and and done…it’s enough!

F.B. Meyer writes,
Through the Bible Day by Day: A Devotional Commentary, Volumes I–VII $188. God’s Bountiful Provision (Psalm 145:10–21)

There is more happiness in the world than we are disposed to think. God’s works give praise to him. Take, for instance, the gladness of one summer day, when from the little green lizards upward there is a perfect murmur of enjoyment in the stilly heat. Shall we not trust God, to whom the care of all things is as easy as the opening of the hand is to us?

4. THE RETURN: Personal, Precise, Corporate, Eternal Preparation

Psalm 145:21 ESV
My mouth will speak the praise of the Lord, and let all flesh bless his holy name forever and ever.

The final reflection:

This Psalm is taken up exclusively with God’s praise.
The Psalmist (vers. 1, 2) praises the LORD even into eternity,
because of (vers. 3–7) His greatness which is unsearchable, but is displayed in glorious deeds of power, and is worthy of the unbounded praise of all generations.
His goodness, (vers. 8–13), is glorious; all that need turn with trustfulness to Him will see that He will never disappoint them (vers. 14–16).
In order to experience this goodness now and forever, man need only forsake the wicked, and unite with those who fear God (vers. 17–20).
The Psalmist concludes by (ver. 21) turning back to the opening, but with an enlarged view.

PERSONAL - “My mouth”

PRECISE - “will speak the praise of the LORD”

CORPORATE - “and let all flesh bless His holy name”

ETERNAL - “forever and ever.”

A few years ago social media channels, where people post anything and everything, released a tool that was a “Year In Review” or a lookback at the highlights of the previous year for most significant moments. Significance was determined by the number of likes/retweets/or other measure of engagement from social media friends.
Another tool came out for Facebook from the UK called “Most Used Words”. It would post a nice “word cloud” image of the most used words in your facebook posts from the previous year. This app came under scrutiny because of significant privacy violations that caused major hacks.
Both tool are insightful. They highlight the things that matter…the abundance of the heart of the user(s).

What are the most used words in our community at West Cabarrus? What does the highlight reel look like as young and old and in between interact (not just with curriculum)?

I trust that an outsider looking in will see clearly:
1. God’s People praising the LORD!
It’s a reality. We can’t help but speak of HIS goodness.
2. God’s People talking to one another about His goodness!
He’s the main theme…his mighty acts would be among the biggest words on our word cloud
We gush, sing with joy, speak with honor…about the LORD most of all!
3. Hes worthy to be praised!
They hear it in the preaching, the see it in our faces, they don’t have to feel and grope around like they’re in the darkness here!
4. Our praise is infectious and eternal! We are preparing for eternity!
My praise is an act of will…BUT I was born to love Him, I was born to know Him, i was born to walk in His ways, I was born to glorify God and enjoy Him forever. AND SO WERE EACH ONE OF YOU!
TRANSITION TO INVITATION
INVITATION/CALL TO RESPONSE:
1. Not a Christian:
David starts off the Psalm referring to “my God and King”.
Can you say that tonight about the God of this Bible? Is He your God & King?
If so…what are you basing that on?
If it’s anything other than a full surrender to the LORD on His terms:
coming to the realization that God is infinitely more Holy and Powerful than you can conceive and that you are measurably more wicked and vile than you previously cared to admit
Admitting your need for a savior, repenting of your sins, confessing Him as LORD…as your God & King!
If not, this Bible clearly conveys: You were born to love Him, You were born to know Him, You were born to walk in His ways, You were born to glorify God and enjoy Him forever.
So, come home to your maker - the lover of your soul - the one whom David went on and on about in this Psalm. Come to Him on His terms…He loves you!
2. You Are a Christian
maybe you’d like to commit to change your “Most Used Words”…it’s an act of the will
maybe you’d like to commit to elevating the conversation around your center of influence a bit.
maybe you’d like to explore church membership and be a part of a community that wants to be a community of praise
THERE’S SOMEONE HERE TO PRAY WITH YOU…COME TOWARD THE STAGE AND SPEAK TO ONE OF OUR PASTORS OR KNEEL HERE AND SPEND SOME TIME WITH THE LORD
WORSHIP TEAM LEADS SONG
FINAL CLOSE
CHURCH IT’S TIME FOR US TO GET TO
praising the LORD!
and talking to one another about His goodness! YOUNG & OLD & IN BETWEEN
Because He’s worthy to be praised!
That kind of praise will be infectious as a community. It’s preparation for eternity!
LET’S PUT OUR HANDS TOGETHER AND PRAISE THE LORD FOR HIS WORD!
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