Cover to Cover
Reading: Psalms 45-50
Focus: Psalm 47
One of the curiosities of modern Christianity is the aspect of worship. Indeed, most religions have an aspect of worship, but they are often solemn and reserved. The images often associated with worship are rituals, chants, ceremonies, liturgies, etc. However, worship in the Judeo-Christian movement is marked by something often lacking in other forms of worship. It is marked by praise. Yes, it is filled with awe of the deity, at times even fear, it is filled with recognition of authority and power; but greater than all of these, worship is marked by praise—joyous, elated praise!
As you read through this psalm (Psalm 47), it is a reflection of this dimension of worship. There is nothing but praise in the words of this psalm. Just imagine a crowd, a gathering of people, singing and shouting in a loud voice: “How awesome is the LORD Most High, the great King over all the earth!” It is a voice that draws others together, all over the Christian world, this element of praise should be the defining mark of its worship. However, where there is no praise—this joy-filled, uplifting praise—questions must be asked of the condition of the church.
Indeed, this God is a God to be feared, but it is to be an awe-filled fear of respect and adoration, as one might fear a loving father; this God is a God to be given due respect, but not at a distance rather at the foot of his throne, as one might approach a wise leader who serves his people; this God is a God to be honoured, but not out of strict obedience, rather as appreciation of what He has done overflows. This is our God, one worthy of worship, one worthy of glory, one worthy of joyous, overflowing praise!
Next Reading: Psalms 51-57