It is no secret that the world, the devil, and all the forces of evil are at war with us (Christians) and want to discourage us and to defeat us. But we have the advantage, for greater is He that is in us than he that is in the world (1 Jn. 4:4). Yes, Christ is our victory. And “the joy of the Lord is our strength” (Neh. 8:10). When we give Him praise He goes to work for us and delivers us by His power. Here are…
Five Ways Praise Helps Me in Spiritual Warfare
1. Praise keeps me from wrong thoughts. 2 Corinthians 10:4 tells us, “For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds.” Praise is one of our best weapons; if it is put to proper use it will destroy all those evil arguments, theories, and reasoning, which so often lead our thoughts astray.
In Proverbs 16:3 (KJV) it says, “Commit thy works unto the Lord, and thy thoughts shall be established.” This is an important principle. From this verse we understand that when we commit our works to the Lord He will show us what to do and how to do it. Accordingly, when we do our work with gladness and praise, demonstrating that we have committed our work to Him, He will give us good and honorable thoughts.
2. Praise keeps the devil and sinners from enticing me to sin. The devil, and all sinners who are controlled by the devil, seem to be always at work trying to lure godly Christians into sin. But I have discovered that they all hate good Christian music; they don’t like to be around any music that gives God praise. For they hate God and the light of His truth, and when praise music comes to their ears they back away in fear and guilt, realizing their eventual doom (Jn. 3:20, 2 Cor. 2:15-16).
I think it is entirely wrong to torment our enemies with a constant barrage of loud gospel music (We are to love them and try to win them.). But if we play our music softly, mainly for the purpose of our own encouragement, I think it is most appropriate, and it will still be effective.
If you can’t have music where you work, you can always praise Him silently in your mind and claim promises that will give you strength. 1 Corinthians 10:13 is a great favorite: “No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, that you may be able to endure it.”
I think praise in many cases, if not in all cases, is our way of escape. Consider also James 4:7-8a: “Submit therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.” The way we can resist the devil and draw near to God is by praise. The devil hates our praise to God and he will flee!
3. Praise will bring me out of discouragement. In Psalms 43 we see that David was feeling the oppression of the enemy, and he also felt rejected by God because He had not yet delivered him. Toward the end of the chapter, however, David realized that the only way to be delivered is through prayer and through praise. So he asked God to send out His light and truth that they would lead him to His holy hill and to His dwelling places, where he would then go to the altar of God.
Well, there, at the altar, God did bring light and truth to David. Consequently, he began to ask himself, “Why am I in despair?” And he said to himself, all I need to do is just hope in God and praise Him. For He will surely help me and put a smile on my face again (my own translation).
4. Praise brings people to salvation. When Christians are not living in fellowship with one another and with God due to unconfessed sin, the salvation of souls is scarce. David realized this after He had sinned, and so he prayed, “Restore to me the joy of Your salvation, and uphold me by Your generous Spirit. Then I will teach transgressors Your ways, and sinners shall be converted to You” (Ps. 51:12-13).
That phrase, “the joy of Your salvation” is basic to praise. It is the foundation of praise. For without our salvation we would have no reason to praise Him at all. But when we have the joy of the Lord and are praising Him, we are energized afresh to witness and to lead sinners to salvation.
The early church is an excellent example of this. In Acts 2:46-47, it says, “So continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, they ate their food with gladness and simplicity of heart, praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily those who were being saved.”
5. Praise may be used to deliver us from Satan’s power. Here are two amazing stories to exemplify this fact: First, in 2 Chronicles 20, is the story of King Jehoshaphat who appointed certain singers, not to fight with the sword, but to defeat the enemy armies with their songs of praise. In verses 22 and 23 we read, “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.”
Another incredible praise deliverance is found in Acts 16:25-26. In this story, Paul and Silas, having been imprisoned and put in chains, about midnight decided to pray and sing hymns of praise to God. And then, as verse 26 tells us, “Suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken; and immediately all the doors were opened and everyone’s chains were loosed.” Now in this story we know that it wasn’t the praise itself that delivered them; it was God. When they decided to pray and give praise to God, the power of God was released to deliver them.