Lesson Text: Acts 16:23-34
The Bible story is about the arrest of Paul and Silas because of the great work they have done. They were beaten and thrown into prison. In the prison, their legs and arms were fastened. They might have been going through a lot of pains.
Some facts from this story:
They just performed a miracle in the name of the Lord.
They were beaten without committing any crime.
They were jailed for no reason.
Their hands and legs are bound together which would make them uncomfortable.
They didn’t have reason to praise God because of their situation. They ought to have complained or as great disciples, to have prayed, but rather they decided to praise God. Then suddenly, there was an earthquake that shook the prison. The doors flung open and amazingly, the bond of Paul, Silas and every other prisoner were released. What caused this mighty discharge of power?
Paul and Silas knew the secret of how to lift their hearts above their troubles and enter into God’s presence and power. Psalm 22:3 says that God inhabits the praise of His people, meaning that, God dwells in the atmosphere of praise.
Note that praise is the vehicle of faith which takes us to God’s presence and also is the gate pass which allows us enter into God’s glory.
What is praise?
Praise means to commend, to applaud or magnify. For a Christian, praise is an expression of worship, lifting-up and glorying the Lord. It is an expression of humbling ourselves and centering our attention upon the Lord with heart-felt expressions of love, adoration and thanksgiving.
Unpretentious praise and worship pleases the Lord. God desires to manifest His sweet presence and power when we praise Him with all our being.
Praise is a lifestyle.
Most of the time, praise to God is something that many people leave at church, an event that only happens when they come together with other Christians. However, praise should be a part of a believer’s lifestyle. What we do everywhere and in all places. On the bed, in the car etc.
Also know that praise is an expression of faith and declaration of victory. It declares that we believe God is with us and in control of the outcome of all our circumstance.
Praise is sacrifice; it’s something that we offer to God sacrificially, not just because we feel like it, but because we believe in Him and wish to please Him.
Praise sends the enemy running!
Since praise manifests God’s presence, that means the presence of the enemy Satan will be repelled.Remember the story of the children of Judah in 2 Chronicle 20. They were faced with enemies that outnumbered them, but Jehoshaphat did the unbelievable by praising God and we all know the result, the enemies destroyed themselves. Don’t forget that Judah means praise. God was praised and He manifest His power.
When Paul and Silas praised the Lord, He manifested His glory by saving a lot of the prisoners and even the prison warder and his household. They got a VIP treatment (which is what we all want) in prison.
Praise God in all situations and see how He will manifest Himself.
DEACON YINKA ANIBABA
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