Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for July, 2016

Why do Christians lift their hands when they sing (called praise or worship)?  In Ps. 138:1, King David sings and exclaims, “I will give You thanks with all my heart.”  The Hebrew word translated “give thanks” (yadah) also has the idea of praise.

Lifting Hands in Worship Woman

In addition, yadah refers to holding the hand out; to revere in worship, to give praise, to give thanks or to confess (i.e. to “confess” or declare the good things about God). Yad is the Hebrew word for “hand.”

Yadah also contains the idea of throwing, and in the case of Ps. 138:1, the meaning would be something akin to throwing one’s hands up to God in praise.

When Jews prayed, they generally stood, with palms uplifted to the LORD (Yahweh); likewise, they often lifted their hands in worship, as a physical means of thanking or praising Him.

Thus, one key reason for the lifting up of one’s hands in praise and worship is to physically and spiritually express thanksgiving to Him.  But we can also lift our hands to God in thanksgiving any time!

Lifting Hands in Worship Corporate

For example, I’m amazed — yet not amazed — that when I come downstairs in the early morning to pray and I immediately lift my hands to the Lord, something changes in me.

The same happens if or when I’m experiencing some difficulty, test or trial — or even if I don’t “feel” like praying or worshiping.

That simple physical act helps me to engage, to focus, and to surrender to the Lord; it reminds me of my need of Him and it helps me to adopt the posture of humility — something He always responds greatly to (e.g. Ps. 138:6; 1 Pet. 5:5-7).

Friend, I encourage you to adopt this simple practice; God will bless it!  One of the many takeaways of Ps. 138 is that when we lift our hands in praise to God, He will “stretch forth” His hand “against the wrath of my enemies” (Ps. 138:7).

Advertisements

Read Full Post »

This may surprise you, but there is someone who understands the power of the Bible — the Word of God — dare I say it? — better than most Christians.

Indeed, I’m speaking of the devil himself — and this comes from the lips of Jesus Christ. Satan is greatly threatened by the power of the Word of God, but sadly, a great many Christians take Scripture for granted.

How can this possibly be?  I encourage you to find out for yourself in the Parable of the Sower, in Mt. 13:1-23.  You can also see a very in-depth teaching I’ve done on this parable at my website: http://pastorbradabley.weebly.com/

Specifically, Jesus teaches in His Parable of the Sower that when the Sower sows the Word, the devil instinctively seeks to “snatch” the word sown into the heart of the hearer.

holy-spirit-wallpaper-pic-0107

It’s quite instructive to consider the meaning of that word “snatches” (Mt. 13:19).  The Greek word is harpazo; this is the same word used for the rapture of the Church in 1 Thess. 4:17, and translated “caught up.”

This Greek word is used elsewhere of a violent snatching or catching up.  Think of it: Jesus tells us that the devil is so keen, so intent on stopping the entrance of the word  of God into a person’s heart that he immediately seeks to violently snatch that word away.

In major contrast to this, God the Holy Spirit gently offers us His life-changing Word.

If you’re reading this, my prayer for you is that you would come to experience one of the three greatest treasures — a lifestyle of immersion into the Word of God (the others being eternal life through Jesus, and the other being the privilege of prayer).

I always do one vital thing before I ever open the Bible; I simply pray these words: Father, please speak to me and change me as I study Your Word now, and please help me to hear it with faith, in Jesus’ name, amen.  Is that a prayer He wants to answer?

Read Full Post »

Two little lines I heard one day,
Traveling along life’s busy way;
Bringing conviction to my heart,
And from my mind would not depart;
Only one life, twill soon be past,
Only what’s done for Christ will last.

Only one life, yes only one,
Soon will its fleeting hours be done;
Then, in ‘that day’ my Lord to meet,
And stand before His Judgement seat;
Only one life,’twill soon be past,
Only what’s done for Christ will last.

Only one life, the still small voice,
Gently pleads for a better choice
Bidding me selfish aims to leave,
And to God’s holy will to cleave;
Only one life, ’twill soon be past,
Only what’s done for Christ will last.

Only one life, a few brief years,
Each with its burdens, hopes, and fears;
Each with its clays I must fulfill,
living for self or in His will;
Only one life, ’twill soon be past,
Only what’s done for Christ will last.

When this bright world would tempt me sore,
When Satan would a victory score;
When self would seek to have its way,
Then help me Lord with joy to say;
Only one life, ’twill soon be past,
Only what’s done for Christ will last.

Give me Father, a purpose deep,
In joy or sorrow Thy word to keep;
Faithful and true what e’er the strife,
Pleasing Thee in my daily life;
Only one life, ’twill soon be past,
Only what’s done for Christ will last.

Oh let my love with fervor burn,
And from the world now let me turn;
Living for Thee, and Thee alone,
Bringing Thee pleasure on Thy throne;
Only one life, “twill soon be past,
Only what’s done for Christ will last.

Only one life, yes only one,
Now let me say,”Thy will be done”;
And when at last I’ll hear the call,
I know I’ll say “twas worth it all”;
Only one life,’twill soon be past,
Only what’s done for Christ will last” — C.T. Studd

Read Full Post »