HEAVEN TOUCHES EARTH WHEN WE OFFER OUR PRAISE TO GOD
“Sing to the Lord, all the earth; proclaim His salvation day after day. Declare His glory among the nations, His marvelous deeds among all peoples. For great is the Lord and most worthy of praise.” – 1 Chronicles 16:23-25 –
King David is a man after God’s own heart. The Most High God sees in him a true worshiper… one in whom He can pour His power… and trust that it will be reflected back for His glory. God chooses and anoints David as king over all Israel.
Seven years into his reign in Hebron, David conquers the city of Jerusalem held by the Jebusites. He sets up residence here, establishing it as the new capital and center of religious worship for Israel. Jerusalem becomes the City of David… and the hill upon which it stands becomes Mount Zion.
David’s first goal in his newly established capital is to bring the Ark of the Covenant again to Jerusalem and offer it a place of due reverence. He sets up a tent, a new tabernacle, on Mount Zion to house this most sacred treasure of Israel. For the ark is the manifestation of Yahweh God… His very presence with His people.
At this time, the tabernacle of Moses resides in Gibeon in the care of Zadok the priest. All burnt offerings and sacrifices to the Lord are made here, in obedience to all that God commanded Moses (1 Chronicles 16:39-40). Thus, the tent in Jerusalem is set up exclusively for sacrifices of praise and worship to Yahweh.
“Ascribe to the Lord the glory due His name; bring an offering and come before Him. Worship the Lord in the splendor of His holiness.” – 1 Chronicles 16:29
The Ark of the Covenant becomes the focus of all worship at David’s new tabernacle. Now, Yahweh no longer dwells in the Holy of Holies, set apart from the worshipers, as in the tabernacle of Moses. Here, His wondrous glory is on display for all the people as they worship. It is heaven touching earth for the Israelites.
Prior to David’s reign, Hebrew worship was quiet, serious… lacking any musical dimension. David transforms the worship experience in Israel, instituting music as a key element. As a gifted songwriter, he authors divinely inspired song prayers, or psalms, for praising God. As a talented musician, he introduces musical instruments to accompany and complement his psalms.
“David left Asaph and his relatives there before the ark of the covenant of the Lord to minister before the ark continually.” – 1 Chronicles 16:37
David sets up a new, prophetically inspired form of worship unlike any in Israel’s history. It is a time of revival for the people’s faith in Yahweh that lasts throughout David’s 33-year reign in Jerusalem.
This new form of worship resembles heavenly worship as described in Scripture. In the heavenly realm, glory and praise to God are everpresent and neverending. David gives orders for worship to carry on continually before the ark… praise unceasing before the Lord Most High.
“I have set the Lord continually before me. Because He is at my right hand, I will not be shaken.” – Psalm 16:8
The Hebrew word for continually is “ta-mid”… a word found 78 times in the Old Testament. Its definition is “always, unceasing, everlasting”… as in the lampstands in the tabernacle of Moses remaining continually lit before the Lord (Leviticus 24:2).
David’s heart is to set the Lord continually before him… and before all the people under his rule. He is dedicated to making religious worship a centerpiece and primary focus of his reign as king. So, day and night worship is given to Yahweh at this new tabernacle in Jerusalem.
In the book of Revelation, the apostle John talks of seeing 24 elders, representative of God’s Church, surrounding His heavenly throne. The elders worship the Holy One day and night, extolling Him with praise and glory (Revelation 4:10-11).
David gathers together the Levites in the region for ministry before the Ark of God. He prophetically chooses 24 family leaders (elders) to head up groups of kinsmen comprising 12 each (1 Chronicles 25:7). These 288 are anointed to continually serve God before the ark as trained singers and skilled musicians on harps, lyres, cymbals and trumpets.
David sets apart an additional 4,000 Levites for the ministry of music at the new tabernacle (1 Chronicles 23:5) to create the environment where God will be pleased to dwell. For this king understands that worship is the incense that brings glory to God… sacrifices of praise, prayer and thanksgiving to the Lord.
Joy becomes the essence of this new worship set up by David. An atmosphere of celebration, reverence and adoration of the almighty God permeates the air. Dynamic music and singing resound. Prayers and petitions are expressed… with thanks and praise given for God’s many blessings. It is a time of exaltation and glory given to Yahweh God.
“Through Jesus… let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise.” – Hebrews 13:15
This joyful, heavenly form of worship is God’s desire for all believers today. For He has adopted us as His own. As kingdom children, we give Him due reverence, adoration and praise. We are “a chosen people, a royal priesthood” (1 Peter 2:9) who serves the almighty Christ. We are living stones built into a spiritual house where Jesus Christ is Head (1 Peter 2:5).
Our praise to God is to be unceasing, just as it was in David’s day… and as it will be forever in heaven. For each of us is a temple, a sanctuary of God. The Spirit of Christ… the everpresence of God… is the heavenly treasure that lives within us (1 Corinthians 3:16). He is the center of our worship… heaven touching earth. Our lives are to be lived as a sacrifice of praise to Him. All is for His glory.
The throne of God is always open to us, day and night. We are forever welcome in His holy presence. Will we give glory to the Most High God? Sing hallelujah to Christ our Savior? Will we set the Lord continually before us… offering to Him our praise unceasing all our days?