We've all heard at some point that worship is an important part of the Christian life: that God enjoys it, that its a healthy communal activity of the Church. But I wonder if any of us actually know the power of it. Thats right, praise has a power in and of itself that can win wars and change history. It has awesome power within the life of the church and within the sector of secular society. We see in 2 Chronicles the Lord saying to the Isrealites, “Do not be afraid or discouraged because of this vast army. For the battle is not yours, but God’s.” So the people gathered together on the day of the battle and sent out worshipers before the Israeli army. The men sang out,
“Give thanks to the Lord, for his love endures forever.”
The Lord, in turn, caused the enemies of Judah to turn upon one another and the battle was won. Israel's enemies had defeated themselves. Today, we see that the same principle applies in matters such as spiritual warfare. When demonic forces attempt to come against the plans and aspirations of God and His Kingdom we praise God. At first this may sound counter-intuitive. But then again, sending musicians out on the front line of an ancient near-eastern battle may seem a bit counter-intuitive. The point is that we come in the opposite spirit. When the devil says that there isn't enough provision we say God will provide. When the devil says the load is to heavy and burdensome to carry we worship the God who says his burden is light. Praise has tremendous power to overcome any obstacle and by it we agree with God and who He says He is. In turn, God always honors his own nature.
Praise has power because it is an active demonstration of faith and we know that God honors faith. The Lord tells us in Matt. 17:20, “if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there' and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you." Praise has power because it is agreeing with God. It saying to God, “your right!” Praise has power because even after confessing God's righteousness, it then goes on to praise it. In true praise our whole being is crying out in union with our Maker.
But praise is not an instrument. We do not praise God in order to somehow reap benefits and rewards. We praise God because God is God and He is worthy of all admiration. In fact, praising God in order to use Him can have disastrous effects (like the sons of Sceva in Acts 19). God is just so good that when He is honored the energy of his joy overflows onto us.
Truly, miraculous things occur when we put our faith in God. So often, it is through praise that God chooses to break strong holds in our own hearts and lives and the lives of those around us.
Author John Bush, 2/12/13, associate of Jesus Saves Network