SCRIPTURE REFERENCES FOR THIS SERMON:
147:1 Praise the Lord,
for it is good to sing praises to our God.
Yes, praise is pleasant and appropriate.
2 The Lord rebuilds Jerusalem
and gathers the exiles of Israel.
3 He heals the brokenhearted
and bandages their wounds.
4 He counts the number of the stars;
he names all of them.
5 Our Lord is great and has awesome power;
there is no limit to his wisdom.
6 The Lord lifts up the oppressed,
but knocks the wicked to the ground.
7 Offer to the Lord a song of thanks.
Sing praises to our God to the accompaniment of a harp.
8 He covers the sky with clouds,
provides the earth with rain,
and causes grass to grow on the hillsides.
9 He gives food to the animals
and to the young ravens when they chirp.
10 He is not enamored with the strength of a horse,
nor is he impressed by the warrior’s strong legs.
11 The Lord takes delight in his faithful followers
and in those who wait for his loyal love.
12 Extol the Lord, O Jerusalem.
Praise your God, O Zion.
13 For he makes the bars of your gates strong.
He blesses your children within you.
14 He brings peace to your territory.
He abundantly provides for you the best grain.
15 He sends his command through the earth;
swiftly his order reaches its destination.
16 He sends the snow that is white like wool;
he spreads the frost that is white like ashes.
17 He throws his hailstones like crumbs.
Who can withstand the cold wind he sends?
18 He then orders it all to melt;
he breathes on it, and the water flows.
19 He proclaims his word to Jacob,
his statutes and regulations to Israel.
20 He has not done so with any other nation;
they are not aware of his regulations.
Praise the Lord!
148:1 Praise the Lord.
Praise the Lord from the sky.
Praise him in the heavens.
2 Praise him, all his angels.
Praise him, all his heavenly assembly.
3 Praise him, O sun and moon.
Praise him, all you shiny stars.
4 Praise him, O highest heaven
and you waters above the sky.
5 Let them praise the name of the Lord,
for he gave the command and they came into existence.
6 He established them so they would endure;
he issued a decree that will not be revoked.
7 Praise the Lord from the earth,
you sea creatures and all you ocean depths,
8 O fire and hail, snow and clouds,
O stormy wind that carries out his orders,
9 you mountains and all you hills,
you fruit trees and all you cedars,
10 you animals and all you cattle,
you creeping things and birds,
11 you kings of the earth and all you nations,
you princes and all you leaders on the earth,
12 you young men and young women,
you elderly, along with you children.
13 Let them praise the name of the Lord,
for his name alone is exalted;
his majesty extends over the earth and sky.
14 He has made his people victorious
and given all his loyal followers reason to praise—
the Israelites, the people who are close to him.
Praise the Lord!
149:1 Praise the Lord.
Sing to the Lord a new song.
Praise him in the assembly of the godly.
2 Let Israel rejoice in their Creator.
Let the people of Zion delight in their King.
3 Let them praise his name with dancing.
Let them sing praises to him to the accompaniment of the tambourine and harp.
4 For the Lord takes delight in his people;
he exalts the oppressed by delivering them.
5 Let the godly rejoice because of their vindication.
Let them shout for joy upon their beds.
6 May the praises of God be in their mouths
and a two-edged sword in their hands,
7 in order to take revenge on the nations
and punish foreigners.
8 The godly bind their enemies’ kings in chains
and their nobles in iron shackles,
9 and execute the judgment to which their enemies have been sentenced.
All his loyal followers will be vindicated.
Praise the Lord.
150:1 Praise the Lord!
Praise God in his sanctuary;
praise him in the sky, which testifies to his strength!
2 Praise him for his mighty acts;
praise him for his surpassing greatness!
3 Praise him with the blast of the horn;
praise him with the lyre and the harp!
4 Praise him with the tambourine and with dancing;
praise him with stringed instruments and the flute!
5 Praise him with loud cymbals;
praise him with clanging cymbals!
6 Let everything that has breath praise the Lord!
Praise the Lord!