Praise the Lord from the heavens. Praise him in the heights above.
Praise him, all his angels. Praise him, his entire heavenly army.
Praise him, sun and moon. Praise him, all shining stars.
Praise him, you highest heaven and the water above the sky.
Let them praise the name of the Lord because they were created by his command.
He set them in their places forever and ever. He made it a law that no one can break. [vss 1-6]
Praise the Lord from the earth.
Praise him, large sea creatures and all the ocean depths, lightning and hail, snow and fog, strong winds that obey his commands,
mountains and all hills, fruit trees and all cedar trees,
wild animals and all domestic animals, crawling animals and birds,
kings of the earth and all its people, officials and all judges on the earth,
young men and women, old and young together.
Let them praise the name of the Lord because his name is high above all others. His glory is above heaven and earth.
He has given his people a strong leader, someone praiseworthy for his faithful ones, for the people of Israel, the people who are close to him.
Hallelujah! [vss 7-14]
(Psalms 148:1-14 GW)
What is worship? It’s a simple word but hard to adequately explain or describe. How is worship expressed? There are myriads of forms and ways for worship to be expressed, along with many opinions about it.
Our current English word worship originally came from the old English word—worth-ship—the realization and response to someone of great value, power, or who is worthy of respect.
Attempts to define or describe worship sound bland and academic. But when a person sees true worship they know! Even better, when a person experiences the freedom and fulfillment of genuine worship, it defies explanation.
This psalm helps us understand worship with its exhortation for all creation to worship God. It declares—Pull out all the stops and praise Him!
It’s like hearing a pipe organ at full volume in a great cathedral, as the organist pulls out all the stops—or a choir singing acapella—filling a cathedral reaching towards heaven.
Psalm 148 exhorts worshippers in two realms—heaven and earth. It begins with the great universal expression of praise and worship—Hallelujah!
All heavenly beings and the heavenly elements of creation are called upon to exalt their Creator and Eternal Ruler. A glimpse of this is found in the gospel of Luke, as the birth of Jesus is announced to the shepherds near Bethlehem (Luke 2:8-14).
Then the earthly realm is encouraged to praise the Creator and Sovereign overall all. This includes all the elements of creation on earth and all beings on earth from animals to kings. Why?
…because his name is high above all others…His glory is above heaven and earth.
The glory, majesty, and splendor of God exceed the honor of whatever and whoever is on earth. A simple illustration of this is the awe we sense when viewing a beautiful sunrise or sunset. Words fall short and it can’t be captured in a photo.
We all know that sense of awe. It is the seed planted in our heart that grows into worship!
When is the last time you stopped to watch a sunrise or sunset or took in a breathtaking landscape?
Take time to see the glory and splendor of God displayed in the heavens and earth and join in the chorus of praise!