Qualities of a Strong Church: A Temple That Praises

1 Corinthians 3:16 NKJV
16 Do you not know that you are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?
Isaiah 25:1 NKJV
O Lord, You are my God. I will exalt You,
I will praise Your name, For You have done wonderful things; Your counsels of old are faithfulness and truth.
The Bible tells us that as believers, we are the temple of God and thus the Holy Spirit dwells in us. A temple was a place where worship and sacrifices were made to God. The priest has the responsibility to ensure that this happened. In the New Testament, every believer is a priest and a king unto our God, and thus we should offer sacrifices of praise to God.
Hebrews 13:15-16 NKJV
15 Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, [a]giving thanks to His name.
But why should we praise God? We praise Him first because he is God and besides him there is no other. He is the all mighty, all powerful, all knowing God through whom all that we can see and even what we cannot see was created by him. This means that we owe our existence and sustenance to him. As believers more than others, we should praise him for his goodness, the bible tells us to taste and see that the Lord is good.
We praise him because praise provides us with access to him. The bible asks us to enter his courts with praise. Psalms 22:3 also informs us that God is enthroned on the praises of his people.
We also praise him because praise is a weapon we use against the attacks of the enemy. When Paul and Silas were beaten with rods and sent to prison, they praised God and God sent an earthquake that shook the prison, broke the chains that bound them and opened the doors.
We praise God because we are grateful for all that he has and continues to do for us. We praise him because he is worthy of all our praise.
A strong church is one that is deliberate in praising God, and we do this consistently, not only in the good times but also when things seem bad, and we do not understand. To praise God in such circumstances is to also remind ourselves of his faithfulness, his promises and his love toward us.
Reflections:
Do you praise God only on Sundays when in Church, or throughout the week?
How has praising God affected your relationship with him?
Read Psalms 145, 146 and 150. What lessons do you learn about praise from these Psalms?
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