Growing in Praise – Pt 1

Growing in Praise

Last months theme was  Attitude — it changes our approach to everything we do.

We saw last week…The man at the pool of Bethesda looking at Peter and John  not thinking about healing as much as hoping for alms. About to beg … ‘there is no one to help me, they all push me out the way… and I can’t get in’. Their comment was ‘I have nothing to give you… but I what I have I give to you … and they prayed for him and he was healed..  he got up walked leaped and praised God..

Today as a church and your pastors the greatest gift we can give you is for you to know “Who God is’

Perhaps the lameness in our legs and the proverbially whats keeping us out of the water is more that we have lowered our expectations and do not know God for who He really is…

Are we any different—are we only looking for— alms,  when the point is to knowing who God really is. So my assignment today is to help you to grow in praise as you get to know our Holy God.

May these meanings and words inspire your growth and progression in worship

Position of  and postures of Praise&Worship

  1. Shabach (Ps 145:4) Shout praise. Expresses confidence in God’s ability.
  2. Barach (Ps 95:6) Kneel, bless the Lord. Expresses humility.
  3. Yadah (Ps 63:1) The extended hand. Expresses gratitude, thankfulness and surrender.

4, Towdah (Ps 50:23) The raised hand. Expresses adoration.

  1. Taqa (Ps 47:1) Clap, applaud. Expresses joy and victory.
  2. Hallal (Ps 148-150) Celebrate extravagantly. Root of the word “hallelujah” which means “praise (halla) to jah (God)”. Expresses joy, jubilation and celebration.
  3. Tehillah Ps 33:1 Singing scripture to instruct and encourage.
  4. Tephillah. (Ps 39:12) Prayer, often sung as intercession and petition.
  5. Kara (2 Sam 6:14) Dance. “David danced before the Lord with all his might.” Expresses joy and celebration.
  6. Zamar ( Ps 4 and 6, 7:17) Make music by striking the fingers on strings or parts of a musical instrument. When we play instrumentally to facilitate a holy atmosphere, it’s not just church cocktail music, it’s zamar.


Towdah– thanksgiving in Hebrew – lifting or throwing upward the hands in thanksgiving

Yadah:: reaching upward towards, the raising of hands, wringing of  hands in a bent over position, praising in ritual worship

Barak: kneel down in surrender and humility. Get low before God

Coals: our confessions and repentance— the continuous praises worship prayers

Hands in pocket is not the body language or posture modelled for holy worship—

The joy of the Lord is my strength

Where the Spirit of the Lord is there is liberty


1 Peter 1:15-16 NIV “But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; for it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy.””

Once I learned the depth and purpose of the tabernacle and the process of the different stages I was able to understand what the point of my praise&worship and the ministry of the Holy Spirit who transforms is. As we go deeper into the heart of ministering to God we learn that exodus 25.1 speaks of a pattern. If we are the temple of theHoly Spirit, we need to understand why God did certain things in the temple and how to establish ourselves in and thing we are supposed to do in our temple so that the presence of God will come to inhabit not just visit..  God has set it up in certain way, a  progression from ‘thankfulness to praise& high praise and then worship.

There is more to having a moving experience in church because we sang awesome songs … ‘ and the perfect playlist!

It started in the heaven-lies where choirs of angels and Lucifer’s entire being was an instrument created to make every conceivable sound that was to Worship God. Wanting to usurp God he was cast out of heaven! Leaving a vacancy inro worship.

God decided to create man with free will. Intending Adam&Eve to worship God. But the serpent deceives Adam&Eve…and for ages we don’t hear about the presence of God until the tabernacle—God instructs Moses to build a Tabernacle and measures it out exactly! It would go where ever the Israelites went, always remain in the centre of their camp. David, blood-line of Jesus desires a place for the tabernacle to live in, but David a man of war with too much blood on his hands, was only allowed to be part of the preparation of the temple, his son Solomon is chosen to build the temple where the ark could live for the rest days.

*See the progression. 1 Corinth 6:19 we are now His temple…

Solomons temple was extravagantly built with no expense spared and no detail or measure was left out.

1 Corinthians 6:19-20 NKJV “Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.”

Today we are Gods Tabernacle

The progression of worship … starting with thanksgiving and ending up in His Secret place where we are transformed by the Holy Spirit of God

We were always Gods plan, to carry the presence of God. We are the tabernacle where God now lives in the person of the Holy Spirit. Our Holy God lives in us. And we have access to Him.The key now is how do we access Him if we know He lives in us.

When we see how exact and precise the tabernacle was built and where God is in it we can then understand how we were made and how we are meant to worship God… and what Worship was meant to be to God.

Lucifer now Satan an enemy of God wants to keep us from this discovery. It helps us to understand that we first need to be reconciled to God through the blood of Jesus so that the presence of the Holy Spirit can dwell in us, ‘enabling’ us to connect to God in Spirit through worship— because God is Spirit and he desires that we worship him in spirit and truth. Jesus said I am the way the truth and the light.

So through the finished work of the cross Jesus removes the veil from the eyes of our heart, so our spirit man comes out from darkness where we were cut off from God. We are transferred  back into the light of the Kingdom of the son of His Love. We we were removed when Adam sinned. So we can enter in now through the ‘Gate of Salvation’. Giving thanks and attesting to Gods goodness.

Being aware of our sin and shame we make atonement  by our sacrifice which is placed on the brazen alter. Here our confession’s confession and repentance burn as ‘coals’ on the alter…(hold on to the thought of the coals)

As we move through the court to the bronze laver made from the brass mirrors that Jewish women owned and surrendered to make a laver which is filled with water   creating a reflection from the brass. The water cleanses  and washes the sin away. It  reflects the image that God in us, we now see ourselves in His image through the water of His word, as the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus.

From here we pass through the veil of our hearts.

~From the alter to the laver we are giving thanks, praising and praying. This is preparing our ‘hearts’ for worship, as we proceed beyond the veil to the golden lamp-stand, we are lit up with the brilliance of the anointing and the gifting of the Holy Spirit, beyond is the table of shew bread… where the body of Jesus is laid out, we commune with Him there in intimate fellowship in spirit and Truth, then we advance to the alter of incense, where we ‘pick up’ the live coals of fire mingled with praise, worship and intercession.


Finally when our worship is acceptable to Abba Father, He will then lift us up into His perfect Presence, between the wings of the Churebim! Beyond the second veil, into The Most Holy Place.

The innermost “mansion”, of our hearts, with the incense of our praise, worship, prayers and intercession creates the smoke of His Presence. Deep within our hearts God is there, and He communes with us … in “The Secret Place”…under the shadow of the Almighty… Deep communing with Deep…

Praise sets the tone for Worship to a Holy God.

Growing in Praise.01

Acts 3:8 NKJV  “So he, leaping up, stood and walked and entered the temple with them—walking, leaping, and praising God.”

Worship is an attitude 

Worship really takes place within the heart.

It is the definition of concepts like ‘thanksgiving, praise and worship and prayer’, outside of actions and behavior, but it describes the progression that leads us step by step into the very presence of God where we may hear His voice and find rest in His arms.

Our Offering

Whenever we come into God’s

presence, He requires that we bring Him various gifts or sacrifices. This includes but is not limited, to money and material possessions. But on a higher level, scriptures speak of various spiritual gifts or sacrifices that God requires His followers to give Him.

These spiritual gifts are thanksgiving, praise and worship.

These terms we use Inter-changeably.

I Compare them to the colors of the rainbow which are distinct, yet also blend into each other with no absolute lines of demarcation. Likewise, thanksgiving, praise, and worship are distinct, but they naturally blend into one another. Here is how I distinguish them.

Thanksgiving – relates to Gods goodness.

Praise – relates to Gods greatness.

Worship – relates to Gods holiness.


Is in a class by itself!

It is the attribute of God that is most difficult for the human mind to comprehend because it has no parallel on earth. We can talk about the wisdom of God because we know wise people. We can talk about the power of God because we have seen  demonstrations of  great power.

But, apart from God there is no earthly example of holiness—it is something unique to God and those who have received it from Him.

I believe that worship relates directly to Gods holiness.  

But, because it’s hard to understand his holiness, it can be hard to fully understand and enter into worship.

Therefore worship is the most difficult of these three gifts or sacrifices for the believer to offer in away that is more acceptable to God. Thanksgiving and praise are primarily utterances of the mouth, but worship is primarily an attitude. This, is important! We can have an understanding of these three terms if we are to be able to make them part of our offering to God.


Praise runs like a golden thread throughout the entire Bible, from beginning to end. Praise is eternal; it’s origin is in heaven. It is the ceaseless occupation of all the glorious and eternal beings that inhabit heaven, where they enjoy close and uninterrupted access to God Himself. Uninterrupted access calls for uninterrupted praise.

Praise is also associated with the earth since it’s beginning. In Job 38 God challenged Job with this question:

Job 38:4-7 NKJV ““Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth? …When the morning stars sang together, And all the sons of God shouted for joy?”

What a beautiful picture of the earth! It was praise that sent our planet first spinning on its celestial coarse, and it’s the responsibility of Gods people on this planet to see that praise continues to mark its coarse until heaven and earth are no more.

Praise is the appropriate way that we relate to God as King on His throne

Psalms 22:3 NKJV “But You are holy, Enthroned in the praises of Israel.”

When combined with thanksgiving, praise gives us access ton God. We see in Psalm 100:4 where the psalmist said:

Psalms 100:4 NKJV  “Enter into His gates with thanksgiving, And into His courts with praise. Be thankful to Him, and bless His name.”

Here are two degrees of access.

  1. First through Gods gates, but praise brings us into His courts. The psalmist indicates that Thanksgiving brings us through the gates, but praise brings us into the courts. This is so beautifully illustrated in Isaiah where the prophet said to Gods people:

Isaiah 60:18 NKJV “Violence shall no longer be heard in your land, Neither wasting nor destruction within your borders; But you shall call your walls Salvation, And your gates Praise.

God dwells in a place of perfect peace and tranquility.

Not only is there no destruction, but there are not even sounds of violence and destruction. But notice the way of access: all gates are praise. In other words the only way into God’s presence and dwelling is through praise. Without praise we Do not have access into the outer courts.


Hebrews 12:28 NKJV “Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom which cannot be shaken, let us have grace, by which we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear.”

Here in the KJ Version, it says; “let us have Grace but in the NIV it translates very differently:

Hebrews 12:28 NIV “Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe,”

Actually each one is a correct translation. In Greek, “to have grace”—the key word charis— is the same as saying “thank you.”

There is a direct connection between grace and thankfulness. An unthankful person is outside of the grace of God.

Three of the worlds Romance languages, those based on Latin, all retain a direct connection between grace and thankfulness. In French gracé à Dieu means, “thanks be to God.” In Italian the word for “Thanku” is grazie. In Spanish it is gracias. You cannot separate thankfulness from the grace of God. When we say “grace” before a meal, we are really saying “let us be thankful.”

There is a beautiful passage in Psalm 95 that depicts the progress into worship. It begins with loud jubilant praise— a lot louder than some churches would permit.

Oh come, let us sing to the Lord! Let us shout joyfully to the rock of our salvation. Psalm 95:1


This does not mean loud singing—shouting means shouting. I like that! I think if there is one thing that is hard for God to accept, it is half hearted praise. Scripture says, “Great is the Lord and greatly to be praised” psalm 145:3

Psalm 95:2

Let us come before His presence with thanksgiving; let us shout joyfully to Him with psalms

Notice again the two stages of access: Thanksgiving and praise

There is no other way into the presence of God. The next three verses give us the reason why we should praise and thank God. The Bible is very logical it does not just; ask us to praise and thank God. It tells us why.

For the Lord is the great God, and the great King above all Gods. Psalm 95:1

Remember I said that it is by praise that we acknowledge Gods greatness. So here the word great is used twice.

“The great God, and the great King above all gods.”

Psalm 71:14 NKJV “But I will hope continually, And will praise You yet more and more.”


When you come into contact with, become aware of, or have a revelation of the holiness of God, there is only one appropriate response: worship. Without such revelation, we cannot really have worship. We can have a song service,  but we do not enter into worship until we have a revelation, however inadequate it may be, of the holiness of God.

*And the holiness of God is not explained. It cannot be defined. It can only be revealed*

This is very important because I think that many Christian’s have the idea that holiness is a set of rules about where you may go, what you may do, and how you may walk and talk and dress. That has nothing to do with holiness. Paul was very imphatic about that in… Colossians 2:20-23

Colossians 2:22-23 NIV “These rules, which have to do with things that are all destined to perish with use, are based on merely human commands and teachings. Such regulations indeed have an appearance of wisdom, with their self-imposed worship, their false humility and their harsh treatment of the body, but they lack any value in restraining sensual indulgence.”

This is so profound and true. The more you focus on the things you must not do, the more they have power over you. You think to yourself don’t loose your temper, whatever you do, do not loose your temper… what do you do, the next thing you do? loose your temper, because you focusing on the wrong thing. No wonder so many people have decided they want nothing to do with holiness.

Hebrews 12 talks about the discipline that God has as a Father for His children:

Hebrews 12:10 NIV “They disciplined us for a little while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good, in order that we may share in his holiness.”

Holiness is not a set of do’s and don’ts. God is not holy because he has a set of rules in front of him to check His own conduct. Rules have nothing to do with Devine or Biblical holiness.

Holiness is the essence of who God is. Everything about God is holy. Therefore in order to have an understanding of Gods holiness we need to have an understanding of who God is and what He is like. Allow me to therefore outline some of His attributes— what the Bible says God is.

God is light 1john 1:5

God is love 1john 4:8

God is both light and love. Light can scare you love can draw you. There is a similar tension in our relationship with God. We want to draw close to Him but we feel uncomfortable entering into that all encompassing light.

  1. Praise Him More & More

Psalms 71:14 TPT “No matter what, I’ll trust in you to help me. Nothing will stop me from praising you to magnify your glory!”

The psalmist makes an unwavering commitment. “I will praise You yet more and more.” The idea expressed is beautiful: “I will find fresh and new ways to express my praise toward God.” The Lord has upheld us from birth (v. 6); He will not abandon us even in our old age (v.18). As the Lord is willing and able to pour fresh blessing upon us at each turning point in our life, our understanding of His love and power grow. And so must our praise. This does not mean we must abandon the old ways of praise, but that we are to become as creative in praise to God as God is creative in meeting our needs. If we continue to praise God for the new kindnesses He shows us every day, we will never fall prey to careless or conditioned praise which becomes boring and ends with merely mouthing phrases. The psalmist declares, “My mouth shall tell of… Your salvation all the day, for I do not know their limits” (v. 15). So let our praises be hope-filled and unlimited.

  1. The Armor of Praise

Isaiah 61:3 NKJV “To console those who mourn in Zion, To give them beauty for ashes, The oil of joy for mourning, The garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; That they may be called trees of righteousness, The planting of the Lord, that He may be glorified.””

Praise as a garment is more than a piece of clothing casually thrown over our shoulders. Praise wraps and covers us, leaving no openings through which hostile elements can penetrate. This garment of praise repels and replaces the heavy spirit. This message that Isaiah preached offers instruction and hope for those oppressed by fear or doubt. In the New Testament, Paul describes another garment that gives this same kind of protective covering (Eph. 6:10–18); he calls it armor. Yet the armor Paul advises us to wear offers us the same advantages: a covering, a protection, and a weapon. He exhorts us to “put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil” (v. 11). Let us do that today! Allow praise to become your armor. “Put on” this garment. A warm coat from our closet only resists the cold wind when it is “put on.” When distressed, be dressed—with praise! Act according to God’s Word!

NB! 03. The Sacrifice of Praise

Hebrews 13:15 NKJV “Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to His name.”

Why is praising God a sacrifice? The word “sacrifice” (Greek, thusia) comes from the root thuo, a verb meaning “to kill or slaughter for a purpose.” Praise often requires that we “killour pride, fear, or sloth—anything that threatens to diminish or interfere with our worship of the Lord. We also discover here the basis of all our praise: the sacrifice of our Lord Jesus Christ. It is by Him, in Him, with Him, to Him, and for Him that we offer our sacrifice of praise to God. Praise will never be hindered when we keep its focus on Him, the Founder and Completer of our salvation. Paul reminds us to “present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service” (Rom. 12:1). Jesus’ cross, His blood, His love gift of life and forgiveness to us remind us to keep offering continual praise as a living sacrifice before the Lord!

  1. Perfected praise

Matthew 21:16 NKJV “and said to Him, “Do You hear what these are saying?” And Jesus said to them, “Yes. Have you never read, ‘Out of the mouth of babes and nursing infants You have perfected praise’?””

This will not only operate powerfully in situations; it will produce strength in our own lives. The psalms repeatedly remind us that “The Lord is the strength of my life” (Ps. 27:1; 46:1; 73:26; 118:14). Is there an area where you need strength today? Lift your voice in praise and watch the Lord make you strong in Him!

  1. Tomorrow’s Praise

Psalm 78:7 AMPC “That they might set their hope in God and not forget the works of God, but might keep His commandments”

Tomorrow’s Praise Referring to our children being trained in the way of praise and thanksgiving, the Lord expresses several expectations for them—that they “may not be like their fathers” (v. 8) and that “they may set their hope in God” (v. 7). Children who expect perfect parents will always be disappointed. At some point, fathers will fail. But God still uses fathers to direct children to the unfailing source of hope—God Himself. That generation will succeed that turns its hope away from anything in this life and fastens its hope firmly on God. In a world set on affixing blame for personal unhappiness and lifelong failure on the circumstances and people of our past, the Lord offers another pathway. As we focus on His faithfulness to our fathers, there is God’s unquestionable promise of securing our present and future too. His love for us is real and readily available each day. Learn to praise the Lord for all that He is, for all that He has done, and for a future He has promised to make bright with His presence.


When we get the pattern right, we find the presence of God and have entered the Secret place… as born again believers this is where we abide  spiritually… the journey starts at the walls of salvation as we enter into the Gates— Jesus is the door  to salvation