When we praise God
He is enthroned and the
enemy is defeated
Recently I was convicted that, as a Christian and one who seeks the Lord, my life should be one of victory, but instead, it’s often one of groaning and sighing. The Lord, it seemed, soon reminded me of the antidote for such a condition: I need to spend more time praising the Lord!
I’ve realized for some time that a truly spiritual person will always have a general attitude of thanksgiving and praise to God; how could we not, when we consider all the blessings, both temporal and eternal, He has so freely bestowed upon us?
Often, however, it is also good to have a specific time to praise the Lord; not just to ask Him for something, or to deal with situations through our prayers, but just to thank and praise the Lord! We can praise Him for His blessings, but even more we can praise Him for His great purpose regarding us, and ultimately, for who He is in Himself.
We may do this together with our fellow believers, but sometimes it is good to even go off by ourselves and have a time to praise the Lord:
Bless the LORD, O my soul;
And all that is within me,
bless His holy name!
Bless the LORD, O my soul,
And forget not
all His benefits.
— Psalm 103:1-2
In his small booklet, “Praising,” Watchman Nee states:
The ultimate goal of Satan is to stop all praises to God. Prayer is a warfare, but praise is a victory….Whenever we praise, Satan flees. Therefore, Satan hates our praising the most….
When you pray, you are still in the midst of your situation. But when you praise, you soar above your situation….
Many times praise works where prayer fails. This is a very basic principle.
It is not that we praise God only when we receive some particular blessing; as Brother Nee points out, the Psalms is the book of the Bible that is the most full of suffering, of “wounded feelings,” as he says, but it is also the book that is the most full of praises.
We surely do thank and praise God for blessings, but often, the praises that are the most precious to God are those that we offer in the very midst of our suffering. Then our praise becomes a sacrifice, because it costs us something. Paul wrote to the Hebrew believers, as they were being persecuted for their faith:
Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to His name.
— Hebrews 13:15
We should not wait for our situation to change before we praise the Lord; to the contrary, it is often our praises that change the situation. The chains Paul and Silas wore fell off as, about midnight, they were “praying and singing hymns of praise to God” (Acts 16:25). And God Himself “set ambushes” against the enemies of Israel when they began to praise Him for His holiness and His mercy (2 Chron. 20:21-22).
This shows us, how great is the power of genuine praise to God! That is why Brother Nee also states:
We need to learn to overcome Satan by our praise….
Spiritual victory does not depend on warfare but on praise….
Once the sacrifice of praise ascends to God, the enemy, Satan, is defeated by praise.
The psalmist says of God:
You are holy,
O You who are enthroned upon
the praises of Israel.
— Psalm 22:3
This indicates that our praises defeat the enemy because, in terms of our experience, they are what enthrone God. Moreover, such praising will greatly strengthen our faith in God. Thus, the psalmist goes on:
In You our fathers trusted;
They trusted and You
— Psalm 22:3-4
It is remarkable to note that this statement is found in Psalm 22, which is the most graphic depiction of the Lord’s death in the entire Bible. It shows us the Lord’s faith in God even as He suffered on the cross. May we also, then, in the midst of our small sufferings, praise the Lord, so that He may be enthroned and glorified, the enemy be defeated, and God’s purpose fulfilled. Amen, and praise the Lord!
With praise and thanksgiving
There stands a great throng
In the presence of Jesus
And sing this new song:
Unto Him Who has loved us
And washed us from sin,
Unto Him be the glory forever!
Sent to our mailing list on
— 8 December 2022 —