Psalm 22:3 – But You are holy, enthroned in the praises of Israel.
Habakkuk 3:17-19 – Though the fig tree may not blossom, Nor fruit be on the vines; Though the labour of the olive may fail, And the fields yield no food; Though the flock may be cut off from the fold, And there be no herd in the stalls– Yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will joy in the God of my salvation. The Lord God is my strength; He will make my feet like deer’s feet, and He will make me walk on my high hills.
2 Chronicles 20:20 – So they rose early in the morning and went out into the Wilderness of Tekoa; and as they went out, Jehoshaphat stood and said, “Hear me, O Judah and you inhabitants of Jerusalem: Believe in the Lord your God and you shall be established; believe His prophets, and you shall prosper.” And when he had consulted with the people, he appointed those who should sing to the Lord, and who should praise the beauty of holiness, as they went out before the army and were saying: “Praise the Lord, For His mercy endures forever.” Now when they began to sing and to praise, the Lord set ambushes against the people of Ammon, Moab, and Mount Seir, who had come against Judah; and they were defeated. For the people of Ammon and Moab stood up against the inhabitants of Mount Seir to utterly kill and destroy them. And when they had made an end of the inhabitants of Seir, they helped to destroy one another. So when Judah came to a place overlooking the wilderness, they looked toward the multitude; and there were their dead bodies, fallen on the earth. No one had escaped.
A covenant is an agreement between at least two people with attached conditions and consequences. It is also called contract or testament. We praise God for His goodness, kindness, forgiveness and blessings; we praise Him for who He is, for His integrity, faithfulness, His unconditional love and care. We also praise God on the basis of our covenant with Him. This type of praise is our obligation, our reasonable service, because no one can praise a father like His own children. This kind of praise is likened to a way a son will support and sing the praise of His father because of their relationship. This kind of praise would command God’s presence and blessing the way the cry of little baby would the attention of his mother. This kind of praise was portrayed in the 2 Chronicles 20. God is enthroned in the praise of His people and not in the praise of the world.
Everybody can praise God and should praise God but God’s attention is more focused on the praise of His children because of our covenant with Him. From the scriptures we saw that the opposition armies were far more than the Jehoshaphat’s army. In other words, they were overwhelmed by the mere thought of what was coming against them. But Jehoshaphat being covenant minded approached the Lord with the terms of the covenant. This is where a lot of Christians miss out on opportunities for breakthrough.
Only a covenant minded person can give covenant praise. Covenant praise is the praise you give to God on basis of your divine relationship with him in spite of your challenges. You choose to praise notwithstanding the looming crisis. In the book of Habakkuk above, the prophet said in spite of the fact that everything was falling apart, he chose to rejoice in the Lord, in the salvation of the Lord and in the strength of God. Why? Because in a covenant relationship, the strength of one is the strength of the other and the problem of one is problem of both parties involved in the covenant.
Because we are in a covenant relationship with the Lord no matter what we are going through, the strength of the lord and His saving power are at our disposal and he will save and preserve us. The power that created light in the midst of darkness, made dry ground out of the sea and separated the firmament is yours because of your covenant relationship with God almighty. One of the ways to release that power is by singing of your covenant with Him and his faithfulness to his covenant. The words of praise song in 2 chronicles 20 were ‘Praise the Lord, for His mercy endures forever.’ Remember, the words of Blind Bartimeaus when he wanted to get the attention of Jesus, he cried out saying ‘have mercy on me son of David’.
We have a covenant of mercy (Grace) with God and when we sing covenant songs we bring the mercy of God on the scene. The reason why the praise of Christians is different from that of non-Christians is because of the relationship that exists between the Christians and Christ. We are the body and Christ is the head. There is no praise like covenant praise. It rings through every fiber of God’s being and commands His response.
Isaiah 49: 14 -16 – But Zion said, “The Lord has forsaken me, and my Lord has forgotten me.” “Can a woman forget her nursing child, and not have compassion on the son of her womb? Surely they may forget, yet I will not forget you. See, I have inscribed you on the palms of My hands; Your walls are continually before Me.
From now on, intentionally make your praise covenant praise. Praise God on the basis of His mercy you received at salvation, praise him on the basis of the father –child relationship you have with Him and based on the finished work of Christ. I want you to know that you have the same relationship Jesus has with God the father. Jesus brought you into that relationship through His substitutional work at the cross. We now have a new and living way through Christ Jesus to the father. Do not praise Him first as your God but first as your daddy.
Romans 8:15 – For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, “Abba, Father.”
Galatians 4:6 – And because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying out, “Abba, Father!”
For Further Study:
Questions for you to reflect on
- Have you considered praising God because of the covenant he made with you in Christ?
- Do you know that God inhabits the praises of His people and not the praise of the world?
- Greater works than Christ did will I do because of the covenant in Jesus name.
- I am a replica of my Creator because of the covenant.