A very elderly lady made an appointment to visit President Abraham Lincoln one afternoon. As she entered the President’s office, he arose, seated her, and asked, “How may I be of service to you, Madame?”
The lady said, “Mr. President, I know you are a busy man. I have not come to ask you for anything. I came to bring you these cookies, for I heard you enjoyed them so much.”
A silence followed in which tears overflowed the eyes of the President. Finally, he raised his hand and spoke to the little woman. “Madame, I thank you for your thoughtful gift. I am greatly moved by it. Since I have been President of this country, thousands have people have come into this office asking for favors and demanding things from me. You are the first person who has ever entered these premises asking no favor, and indeed, bringing a gift for me. I thank you from the bottom of my heart.”
The Hebrew language has seven words that describe the attitude and posture we should have in offering praise to our Savior, Lord, and coming King.
TOWDAH – A sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving that honors God; it is initiated by the believers. Psalm 100:4 says, “Enter into his gates with thanksgiving (Towdah), and into his courts with praise; be thankful unto him and bless his name.”
YADAH – To raise and extend the hands unashamedly unto God. Psalm 134:2 says, “Lift up your hands in the sanctuary and bless/praise (Yadah) the Lord.
ZAMAR – To touch the strings or parts of a musical instrument; to play upon it and make music, sometimes accompanied by words. Psalm 33:2 says, “Praise the Lord with harp; sing (Zamar) unto Him with psaltery and an instrument of ten strings.”
TEHILLAH – To sing in the Spirit (this is the only Hebrew word used when the Word of God speaks of the Lord “inhabiting our praises”. Psalm 40:3 says, “He has put a new song in my mouth, even praise (Tehillah) unto our God; many shall see and trust in Him.”
HALAL – To be clear, to shine, celebrate and rejoice in the Lord with a distinct sound (primary root of the word ‘hallelujah’. Psalm 22:22 says, “I will declare your name unto my brethren; in the midst of the congregation will I praise (Halal) you.”
BARAK – To bless God as an act of adoration, to kneel expectantly and quietly before Him. Psalm 145:21 says, “My mouth will speak in praise of the Lord. Let every creature praise (Barak) His holy name forever and ever.”
SHABACH – To address the Lord in a loud shout. Psalm 63:3 says, “Because your loving kindness is better than life, my lips shall glorify (Shabach) you.”
Think theologically. How does your worship measure up against these seven words? Worship is giving “worth-ship” (i.e., the highest value) to God in word and action. Be sure to develop a daily lifestyle of thanking Him for who He is and what He has done.
Love is a verb,