A Duty to Praise

“Solomon assembled the elders of Israel and all the heads of the tribes, the leaders… in Jerusalem, to bring up the ark of the covenant of the Lord out of the city of David, which is Zion. And all the men of Israel assembled before the king at the feast that is in the seventh month.  And all the elders of Israel came, and the Levites took up the ark.  And they brought up the ark, the tent of meeting, and all the holy vessels that were in the tent; the Levitical priests brought them up.  And King Solomon and all the congregation, who had assembled before him, were before the ark, sacrificing so many sheep and oxen that they could not be counted or numbered.  Then the priests brought the ark of the covenant of the Lord to its place, in the inner sanctuary of the house, in the Most Holy Place, underneath the wings of the cherubim. The cherubim spread out their wings over the place of the ark, so that the cherubim made a covering above the ark and its poles…  And when the priests came out of the Holy Place (for… all the Levitical singers,.. with cymbals, harps, and lyres, stood east of the altar with 120 priests who were trumpeters;  and it was the duty of the trumpeters and singers to make themselves heard in unison in praise and thanksgiving to the Lord), and when the song was raised, with trumpets and cymbals and other musical instruments, in praise to the Lord,

“’For he is good,
    for his steadfast love endures forever,’

“the house, the house of the Lord, was filled with a cloud,  so that the priests could not stand to minister because of the cloud, for the glory of the Lord filled the house of God.” 2 Chronicles 5:2-8,11a-14

A completed temple was finally the permanent home for the ark of God’s presence, and king Solomon ordered that the priests set in place with reverence and gladness. Some of the priests had the sole duty to make music, in unison, praise and thanksgiving to the LORD. What a job! The result? So much glory descended that they were overcome.

It is also our duty to praise, and it makes a difference. We get hung up on do and do and checking off lists and neglect the necessity of praise. Praise acquaints us with the thoughts of heaven, and softens harsh attitudes. Praise elevates desire and broadens perspective beyond self. Praise lubricates the heart toward others who share our human condition. Praising the Lord Jesus for who He is, regardless of us, develops holy expectancy and trust. It improves us and exalts Him! (1 Thessalonians 5:18)

What will we adjust to get in the practice of regular praise? Do we nitpick with self-centered gratitude, thanking God only for what we like, what gives ease and comfort? Or will we heartily give thanks in all? Are we solo singers, or do we make effort to join with others? Would we take time and attention to be enthralled with His majesty so we magnify our Lord throughout the day? (Psalm 34:3)

Father, may my praise of You, Your goodness and steadfast love, be so glad and consistent that Your glory fills my heart and home.

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