As we move into this time of year, it is the time for Thanksgiving and for hunting. Soon we’ll be able to gather around our tables in gratitude and then many of us will grab our weapons to go out for deer. In the Christian life we have weapons available to us. In 2 Cor. 10:4, Paul says, “these weapons are not of the flesh.” These weapons don’t consist of bows and arrows or guns and bullets but they are weapons that God has made available to us through Christ. Now, you might ask, “Why on earth would God equip us with weapons? Why would we need these?” Well, Paul says in Eph. 6, that we have “armor” and “weapons” that we might “resist the devil’s schemes” and “stand firm.” It is no secret to any of us that there are battles that we fight in life. Some come from Satanic opposition, others come from fleshly temptations, and then there are other struggles that are just a part of everyday life in a sinful world. We need weapons for this fight.
One of the weapons Paul lists in Eph. 6 is “the sword of the Spirit” which he explains is the Word of God. There are great victories that can come in life by wielding this Sword. By trusting and obeying what we read in the Scriptures we find hope in the midst of darkness, perseverance under pressure, and the strength to stand firm. Another weapon, not found in Paul’s list in Eph. 6, is from Ps. 149 which is the weapon of praise. It is this weapon that kept David moving through the valley of the shadow of death. Praise is what kept David’s heart and focus on the Lord (where his true hope and strength would come from) in the depths and caves of his life. It is through choosing to use this weapon in your own life that will lead you to walk victoriously and joyfully through trial and hardship. This is what will bring perseverance until the day you come into the presence of the One who is the focus of your praise.
In Ps. 149:6, David says, “Let the high praises of God be in their mouth, and a two-edged sword in their hand…”. Praise is a weapon for us to do battle with. It is for us to take on anxiety in our beds at night (Ps. 149:5). It is for us to vanquish fears in this world. It is for us to conquer sin and guilt in our lives. David begins this Psalm by proclaiming, “Praise the Lord!” and then throughout gives reason to praise. One reason is found in vs. 4, “For the Lord takes pleasure in His people; He will beautify the afflicted ones with salvation.” What reason do we have to praise? We know through the gift and work of Jesus Christ that He loves us! Think on that! The Creator. The King over all things loves us and He has shown that love mightily and magnificently through sending His Son to die for us on the cross. And He did this to “beautify” us. We also praise because Hedeals with all of our issues, all of our ugliness, all of our sinful mess and He makes us beautiful through Jesus. Day by day, those who are His, are becoming more and more beautiful as they are made to look like Jesus. This isn’t up to us to do ourselves. We don’t need to try to cover our sin or make up for it but rather we confess those things to Jesus and trust Him to forgive us, clean us up, and make us new (1 John 1:9). That’s reason to praise!
Using This Mighty Weapon Of Praise,