This topic is one that I have studied about a week ago. I was planning on doing it right after the one that I did on Worship. In between that, God had me not. I was fully prepared one day to talk about praise and thanksgiving and worship and how it all fits. God stopped me that day and told me to do something on Mommy Guilt, so I did that instead. I was mowing the lawn today and all of a sudden the Lord said, “Today is the day that we are going to talk about praise where you looked at that before.”
So, today we are going to be looking at praise and thanksgiving it is kind of the second message in this series. The first that we did in the series of worship, and I have the feeling there’s going to be three talking about worship. I talked about that a little bit in the message before this one. I will kind of recap here in a minute what we talked about. Then I feel that probably after this one, we will be talking about thanksgiving and what that looks like and thanks because I just touch on it a little bit here, the difference between what praise and thanksgiving is and what that looks like in our lives.
Praise is really what flows out of worship and we have to understand what worship really means to be able to understand praise. I would encourage you, if you haven’t seen my video on worship or read the transcript, to go back and listen to or read that. It’s only about 15 or 20 minutes and it just goes into a little more depth and background and documentation of the true meaning of worship. What that basically stated was that worship is recognizing and believing the truth of who Daddy is. It’s our spirit acknowledging its true heritage in knowing whose we are and knowing and receiving His life and His goodness and His grace and His truth as was shown to us by Jesus. I went into that a little bit more on my previous video but that’s really what worship is. Worship is recognizing and believing the truth of who Daddy is. It’s your spirit acknowledging its true heritage and knowing whose you are and knowing and receiving His life which He came to give us – His goodness, His grace and truth as we can see in Jesus.
When we think about praise, we also can get that confused with thanksgiving or thanks. Thanks is actually different than praise. Thanks says, “I thank You” or “Thanks”. Whether you express it or not you are actually the subject of the verb in thanks. Whereas in praise, the object of praise is the subject of the sentence. It would be God so He would be the subject of the sentence. It would be like, “He rescued me” or “He forgave all my sins.” We are not the object of that sentence therefore it is praise and not thanksgiving. There is a difference.
If we look at Ephesians 1:3, we can see that this is actually an example of praise and thanksgiving in one verse. It says, Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with all spiritual blessings in the heavenly places in Christ.”
Praise is what was first there because it acknowledged God, or the acknowledgment went to God who was the subject: Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ… That’s an example of praise.
Thanksgiving is what we see secondly in the sentence as the focus turns to the speaker.: who has blessed us (Now the focus is on us) with all spiritual blessings in the heavenly places in Christ.”
Praise focuses on God and who He is. Thanksgiving focuses on what God has done for us. That is the difference between praise and thanksgiving.
Hebrews 13:15 Through him therefore let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise, that is, the fruit of lips that give thanks to his name. (Fruit here is the Greek word, karpos. It means everything that is done in true partnership with Christ. That’s what it is talking about here. So it is saying, “Through Him, through Jesus, let us continually (an account of or because of ) offer to God a sacrifice of praise that is the fruit, or the partnership with Jesus, of lips that give thanks. Thanks here means to speak the same thing or to agree. It is actually the same word as confess. When we think about “confess your sins, it means to speak the same as. So that is the fruit of the lips that give thanks or speak the same as, or agree.) to his name.
Through Jesus and not of our own effort or strength, but out of the overflow of worship, flows praise. It flows through Jesus of our knowing who He is and who we are and what He has done for us. The word, fruit, here is actually the same word that is used in the verse, fruit of the Spirit. It’s also the same word that is used as, “I am the vine and you are the branches. Whoever abides in Me produces much fruit.” That is the same word that we are talking about here in Hebrews 13:15. Fruit as everything done in true partnership with Christ.
Sacrifice is an offering. It’s a praise offering even when the world’s view looks bad… like things look bad through the worldly view, we can worship and praise because we are agreeing with Daddy, the truth about the situation. We are seeing it through His perspective and not our perspective. So even when we are going through a difficult situation, we can see it through Daddy’s eyes and we can give praise and worship and thanks because of the fruit of the Spirit that comes forth effortlessly out of us because Jesus lives in us and we don’t have to let the worldly perspective steal that away from us. We can trust in Him in what He is doing in our lives and what He showed us He did for us through Jesus.
I thought this was interesting: In the Old Testament, the sacrifice of praise would mean that a worshiper would bring a sacrifice which would be placed on the altar to be cooked for a communal meal, a meal they would all eat together. While the animal was being cooked, the worshiper, the one who provided it, would stand beside the altar and proclaim the praise to God. This would be the reason why everyone would eat from this sacrifice because they would recognize that God had done something for the worshiper because of the offering that they offered. They would then all eat the meal together because they saw that God had done something so they ate and gave thanks because the worshiper had been changed.
In the New Testament, Jesus was our sacrifice of praise. He placed Himself on the altar and told us to eat of His flesh. Those who eat from the flesh, understand as God had done something in them, changing their hearts and minds. It just reminded me of how many disciples He lost when He made that comment that said, “If you would eat of My flesh and drink of My blood!” they looked at Him as, “What are You talking about! There is not any way…” They thought He had gone off the deep end!
That’s just what He was showing me is that those of us who understand what that truly means to eat of His body and drink of His blood, are participating in what we know as Communion but we are also participating in this praise offering because He offered Himself for us. It just kind of blew me away because as we are partaking in that, we are realizing and we are seeing that He has changed us. We are in agreement with, “Yes, Lord! You have changed us. You have changed my thinking. You have changed my mind.” I just thought that was really interesting. He also led me to 1 Peter.
1Peter 2:9 But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that we should show forth the praises of him who has called you out of darkness into his marvelous light;
“…that we should show forth the praises of him “ I thought that was interesting because the praise, remember, the subject is Him. So how do we show forth the praises of Him? The Lord just really spoke to my heart and He said that we are the praises of God! That we are the walking examples of God’s excellency and goodness. We are that living example showing forth the praises, or the excellencies, of Him who has called us out of darkness and into His light. I thought that was awesome to think of how He views us! I mean how can you not praise and thank and worship Him when He is so in love with us! That He sees us as His praise! I can just picture how we brag on our kids when they do something awesome. The thing I am thinking of right now is my daughter went to get her own Youtube channel to do broadcasting because she is really into Minecraft and she wants to start doing videos. Originally we told her, “No.” Then she put her mind to it and decided that she was going to write a proposal and present it to us about the reasons why we should let her, and educationally the benefit from that and how it benefits the family and how it benefits her. So right now I am praising my daughter. I am praising her for her awesomeness in coming up with something like that. God is saying, “That’s what I do to you!”
I can just hear Him turning to Jesus and saying, “Did you see what she did today? Isn’t that awesome! She is so awesome! I am so in love with her!” To even think that He would say that about us… like He is that proud of us that He sees us as His praise and He sings our praises because He loves us! In turn, it just blows my mind! How could I not praise Him! How could I not see how amazingly awesome He is
and just speak forth out of that revelation of His goodness, the truth of who He is! Just for praise, like “God, You are amazing! God, You are awesome! You can do anything!” I could just go on and on! That’s praise. Thanksgiving is, “Lord, thank You that You love me! Lord, thank You that You took care of me today. Lord, thank You that You help me show others the truth of who they are and who I am!” Do you know what I mean… it just flows naturally out of worship.
Remember, worship is recognizing and believing the truth of who God is. It’s basically your spirit acknowledging its true heritage and knowing whose you are and knowing and receiving His life, goodness, grace and truth. That’s what that is. Praise God is the object of our praise and it flows out of us, effortlessly, because of the worship… we recognize and believe the truth. And out of the praise comes thanksgiving where we thank Him for everything that He has done. Amen! That’s what I have to say about that.
Lord, I just thank You that You are the object of our praise. I thank You that through worshiping You, through understanding, knowing and joining with You that not only does praise flow out of us as a fruit but from that praise, we give thanksgiving. I just thank You Lord! You are awesome! You are amazing! I just thank You that You continue to reveal more and more to us each and every day… in Jesus’ name!