How many of you are breathing right now? How many of you have breath?
I got an idea, how about we try to hold our breath until the end of the sermon. No one wants to try that. I think I can go about thirty seconds without breath and that is about the same amount of time I can go without talking or eating. Breathing is very important in life. Actually, one could argue “to live is to breathe.”
Everyone let’s take a deep breath. Let’s do it together. Let’s breathe in and now let’s breathe out.
You all have breath and Psalm 150 tells us that means we can praise God.
Let’s read Psalm 150.
1 Praise the Lord.
Praise God in his sanctuary;
praise him in his mighty heavens.
2 Praise him for his acts of power;
praise him for his surpassing greatness.
3 Praise him with the sounding of the trumpet,
praise him with the harp and lyre,
4 praise him with timbrel and dancing,
praise him with the strings and pipe,
5 praise him with the clash of cymbals,
praise him with resounding cymbals.
6 Let everything that has breath praise the Lord.
Praise the Lord.
I am continuing a series titled: “You are the church.” Today I focus on Congregational praise.
Theme and challenge:
I want to challenge you to praise God with your breath. That is my theme and challenge.
According to Psalm 150 you are to praise the Lord.
- In verse 1 we see the call (150:1)
- They are called to praise the Lord.
- Notice that the verb “to praise” is used 13 times in these six verses. It is used twice in each verse and 3 times in verse 1.
- I would say that praising the Lord is pretty important.
- This is the conclusion of the Psalms and it is all about praise. But this Psalm is not simply about praise, I believe it is more community driven.
- Praise the Lord “in His Sanctuary.” This is likely the Holy of Holies and in the temple. It is awesome that we are now the Temple of God. (1 Cor. 6:19) We can praise the Lord anywhere.
- In verse 2 we see the cause (150:2)
Chorus: Awesome God
- Why do we praise God?
- We praise God for His acts of power.
- We praise God for His greatness.
- When we praise God we are loving God. God loves us (John 3:16; 1 John 4:19), we are loving God back.
- In verses 3-5 we see the celebration (150:3-5)
Shout to the Lord
- This is a celebration.
- When we have a birthday party, do you do that alone?
- Can you celebrate on your own? I don’t think so. No, you invite a group of people and you celebrate.
- Worship, praising God, is something that we do as a community.
- Look down at verses 3-5. We can’t do this on our own, can we?
- We have instruments.
- This is a loud worship service.
- Take your finger and stick it up in the air and now point it at yourself and say, “I am the church.”
- You are the church and you are here to praise God.
- We are celebrating how awesome God is. We are loving God.
In verse 6 we see the culmination (150:6)
Be the Center (verse 1 and chorus)
- Do you have breath?
- Try it again, let’s take a deep breath.
- Now, let’s praise the Lord with our breath.
- Everyone let’s say, “I love you Lord.”
- Some Applications and I am applying these to myself as well. They are in this first person.
- Do I take praising God seriously?
- How do I view the hymns and songs in a worship service?
- Am I singing them to God?
- Am I singing them like I mean them and like I actually care?
- What is going on in my head? Am I just going through the motions.
- What about prayer? Am I echoing the prayer to God?
Research in the field of bioacoustics has revealed that every day we are surrounded by millions of ultrasonic songs. Did you know, for instance, that the electron shell of the carbon atom produces the same harmonic scale as the Gregorian chant? Or that whale songs can travel thousands of miles underwater? Or that meadowlarks have a range of three hundred notes? Supersensitive sound instruments have discovered that even earthworms make faint staccato sounds! Arnold Summerfield, the German physicist and pianist, observed that a single hydrogen atom, which emits one hundred frequencies, is more musical than a grand piano, which only emits eighty-eight frequencies.
Science writer Lewis Thomas summed it up it this way: “If we had better hearing, and could discern the [singing] of sea birds, the rhythmic [drumming] of schools of mollusks, or even the distant harmonics of [flies] hanging over meadows in the sun, the combined sound might lift us off our feet.”
All of creation is worshipping God. When we come together to worship, are we praising God?
You are the church, please come and praise God as a body of Christ.
Jesus said in John 4:23:
Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks.
Let’s praise Him now.
Do you know Christ?
God created us to be with him. (Genesis 1-2)
Our sin separated us from God. (Genesis 3)
Sins cannot be removed by good deeds (Gen 4-Mal 4)
Paying the price for sin, Jesus died and rose again. (Matthew – Luke)
Everyone who trusts in him alone has eternal life. (John – Jude)
Life that’s eternal means we will be with Jesus forever. (Revelation 22:5)
 Adapted from Mark Batterson, All In (Zondervan, 2013), pp. 118-119