Sing to the LORD a new song; sing to the LORD, all the earth. Sing to the LORD, praise His name; 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; He is to be feared above all gods. For all the gods of the nations are idols, but the LORD made the heavens. Splendor and majesty are before Him; strength and glory are in His sanctuary. Ascribe to the LORD, O families of nations, ascribe to the LORD glory and strength. Ascribe to the LORD the glory due His name; bring an offering and come into His courts. (Psalm 96:1-8)
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Many times, I am tempted to zoom past passages like this and pick out a very quick application for myself...
For instance, we could read Psalm 96 and easily state that it is calling us to "Lala" God's name everywhere. Feeling good about our in-depth biblical exposition, we then tweet verse one with the killer hash-tag, #lalaeverywhere.
But please realize that singing "new songs" to the LORD and "declaring" His "glory" and "marvelous deeds" implies some pretty serious things.
In fact, "ascribing" glory and strength to anything is a pretty big deal.
"As·cribe" is attributing something to a person or cause.
It is literally giving, accrediting, and attributing all glory and strength to the Lord. And if you look at the Hebrew word used, you get a littler deeper description. The word "ascribe" in this context is a marker of attention; as if it is saying: "ALERT!"
In this context, it is calling us as the reader to be alert and ready to take action. And this word is only used when encouraging someone to do something BIG.
And that BIG thing is this: to give; to bring; to hand over control; to praise; and to speak words of excellence and greatness towards and about God...without ceasing, in all things, all contexts, all areas, all relationships, everything.
And the humbling part is that this particular word implies that there is a choice to be made. In fact, we always "ascribe" to one thing over ascribing to another. This means that whether we believe it or not, we are either "ascribing glory and strength to the LORD" or ascribing glory and strength elsewhere.
Here is some real talk with Greg: Some mornings, I wake up in a cloudy and rushed haze of irrational displeasure and anxiety.
Displeasure for what I didn't get done yesterday. And anxiety for having to do it all today.
Displeasure for waking up late and having to rush around. And anxiety for having a whole day of rushing.
Displeasure for feeling displeasure. And anxiety for feeling anxiety.
Like I said...Irrational. And during these mornings, I just feel off.
And maybe you have experienced these feelings recently - perhaps even today. Maybe you're having a crazy week before your much needed vacation. Or you're late on a large project at work. Or maybe you were rushing around all morning in order to make it to practice on time.
Whatever the reason...we can find ourselves waking up in a disillusioned haze of displeasure and anxiety. And this is a perfect picture of "ascribing glory and strength elsewhere."
You see, in my disillusioned haze, I am taking my mind; my thoughts; my feelings; my actions...and with them...I am showing strength and "glory" to something other than God.
And when we do this, we - in a way - show that the world, our to-do lists, our hobbies, or even our jobs have some type of power over us. We ascribe glory and strength to each of them. But there is no god like our God. He is worthy to be praised.
With that said, ascribing glory and strength to the Lord is to make it known both inwardly and outwardly that He is BIGGER. That He is bigger than our fears; our insecurities; our anxieties; our to-do's; our plans; our sports; our jobs; and our displeasure.
This passage is not just calling us to outwardly "Lala" everywhere... but instead, to have a heart that is continually choosing to give and accredited all attention, power, glory, and strength to the Lord.
Today, let us declare His glory. We would love to know: What were your thoughts on today's devotion? What stood out? Feel free to answer by commenting in our IG post! (instagram.com/declareglory)
Greg, Declare Glory