“Praising Together” 

Pastor David Moore

Old Testament reading: Psalm 21:1-13 (NIV)  

The king rejoices in your strength, Lord. How great is his joy in the victories you give!  You have granted him his heart’s desire and have not withheld the request of his lips. You came to  greet him with rich blessings and placed a crown of pure gold on his head. He asked you for life, and you gave it to him—length of days, for ever and ever. Through the victories you gave, his glory is great; you have bestowed on him splendor and majesty. Surely you have granted him unending blessings and made him glad with the joy of your presence. For the king trusts in the Lord; through the unfailing love of the Most High he will not be shaken.  

Your hand will lay hold on all your enemies; your right hand will seize your foes. When you appear for battle, you will burn them up as in a blazing furnace. The Lord will swallow them up in his wrath, and his fire will consume them. You will destroy their descendants from the earth, their posterity from mankind. Though they plot evil against you and devise wicked schemes, they cannot succeed. You will make them turn their backs when you aim at them with drawn bow.  

Be exalted in your strength, Lord; we will sing and praise your might.  

Theme: We looked at the concept several weeks ago, about the idea that people were cut to the heart and the Holy Spirit was inserted into a person’s life. The New Testament authors call this a new life. How can we be sure of the new life? The proof is truth and love. ~D. Moore  

New Testament reading:Acts 2:40-47 

With many other words he warned them; and he pleaded with them, “Save yourselves from this corrupt generation.” Those who accepted his message were baptized, and about three thousand were added to their number that day.  

They devoted themselves to the apostle’s teaching and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and prayer. Everyone was filled with awe, and many wonders and miraculous signs were done by the apostles. All the believers were together and had everything in common. Selling their possessions and goods, they gave to anyone as he had need. Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.  

So, what is the sign that this new love is happening? Verse 44: “all the believers were together.” Verse  46: “they met together.” ~D. Moore  

Who came together? What did they do? Why did they come together? And how did it happen? ~D.  Moore  

Who came together? People who had a collective great awe, in fear of God, with the sense of God’s presence and yet these folks had little in common. ~D. Moore  

Christianity’s inclusiveness came about because of the uniqueness of Jesus Christ, the Son of God, who accomplished salvation for all sexes, all races, learned or unlearned, high or low in society, abled and disabled, all were included because salvation was made possible in Christ. ~D. Moore

What did they do when they were together? 

  • Studied the teaching of the apostles. 

  • Reveled together in the wonder of God coming for them by His death. 

  • Together they: 

    • Fellowshipped 

    • Shared joys and burdens and 

    • Prayed for each other. 

  • They remembered Jesus through the Communion ritual of the Last Supper.
    ~D.  Moore  

The young church worked in two areas: word and deed. The learning, the worship, and the fellowship  transformed them into generous people. ~D. Moore  

If we ignore learning, and only focus on worship and fellowship, which is common in American Christianity today, we begin to water down what Christianity is about. We don’t know what we believe and why. We end up with a faith of emotion without logic. ~D. Moore  

How did they continue to meet? While they were together, they were fellowshipping, studying, and praising God. Praise is urgent; it is the fuel for replenishing our souls. It reminds us of who we are and whose we are. We praise because we can enjoy it, it completes the enjoyment, and it complements our  soul. ~D. Moore  

Christians come together to praise the One who died for them on the Cross. They broke bread to remember His broken body and are reminded of the blood He shed for them. ~D. Moore  

How do we comfort, heal, and right a relationship? We praise God together for mercy, holiness, and  God’s goodness as we comfort each other. ~D. Moore  

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18: Rejoice always, Pray continually, Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is  God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.  

Whenever we have something against another, we cannot praise God. Remember the Cross and everything else comes into focus. Jesus has removed all barriers for you and me on the Cross. Think about how our belief in Christ through His death on the Cross allows us to trust and love each other in our fellowship together.

This week: Praise God for the members of our church, pray for each of them every night before you go to bed. Develop a habit of praying for each other whenever God puts it on your heart.

God bless.