David’s Tabernacle Restored, Part 14
January 25, 2019
During the past seventy-plus years, I’ve heard everything from good old country gospel music to classical music referred to as “Worship.” Huhh Uhh! Nope! It doesn’t work like that! That doesn’t mean that one can’t worship with country-style music, nor does it mean that one can’t worship with certain classical music. We’ve experienced real worship in the midst of what I would call jazz.
There is so much that gets referred to as praise and worship that, for the average person who doesn’t flow in this realm, it can get really confusing. People go to a church service and call singing songs, listening to testimonies, taking up the offering, and listening to the preacher teach, “Worship.”
That doesn’t mean a person can’t worship in the midst of all that noise, but to call that worship is to disparage everything that David spent his life on. It mocks the Tabernacle of David.
David had experienced years of that sound and that synchronous relationship with the heart of the Lord as he offered up praise and worship on the hillsides tending his father’s sheep. He had been bred for this time in the life of Israel. He had a heart after the Lord — and that meant that he knew what it would take to bring Israel back to its proper place of relationship with God.
The Tabernacle that he set up was simple and uncomplicated: a plain old tent, housing the Ark of the Covenant with the flaps open so that Israel could see the Ark as that 24-hour praise and worship went forth.
As Asaph, Heman and Jeduthun began their ministry under the leadership and mentoring of David, a synchronous vibration began to go forth over Israel. It was a sound that was synchronized with the heart of the Lord. It was His sound! And it produced the changes necessary so that for the first time in hundreds of years, Israel had preeminence in the land.
The authority of the Lord was being manifested in the sound. The power of God spread throughout the land. The land began to produce as it had never produced before. The people began to prosper. Poverty began to disappear.
David began to take lands and territories that God had promised to Abraham, but no leader before him had been able to accomplish. The sound and life of compromise with the heathen began to depart. The life and vibration of the life of the Lord began to fill the land!
Sad to say, but God’s people today have lost sight of that. Worship is still just the singing of songs. It has become more entertainment than worship. Musicians are anxious to become part of so-called “worship teams” because they desire to exploit their musical prowess and to be a part of “a sound” —not understanding what that sound needs to be.
We have would-be worship leaders contending with each other on who gets to lead the worship. It has become a series of competitions.
One of the things that sets a true worship leader apart from the crowd is that he or she never pushes themselves forward. Solomon had it right when he wrote the following:
Proverbs 18:16: A man’s gift maketh room for him, and bringeth him before great men.
Because worship has been the core of my being for my whole life, I have never had to thrust myself forward as a potential worship leader. When people begin to hear and to experience the sound — the synchronous sound — of the Lord in our worship, they begin to seek us out.
The body of Christ, I believe, is sick of the same old, same old, same old sound. Folks are hungry for the real presence of the Lord — that same presence that produces the signs, the wonders, the miracles that Jesus did. And consider this! Jesus made the following promise as part of His Covenant with us:
John 14:12-14: Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.
And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it.
Greater works? Greater works? Yeah, right!
Most Christians, if they get to do any of the works that Jesus did, are more than satisfied. Not me, folks! I have a clear case of “satisfied dissatisfaction!” You know what that is, right? My state of satisfaction with where I am in God is continually dissatisfied. I KNOW that I haven’t even scratched the surface on what He wants to accomplish through me and with me. Every corpuscle of my being wants to vibrate in sync with Him on a continuous basis so that everything He wants and needs to take place on earth, and with His people, gets done.
Hence, I worship. I play the guitar. I play other instruments. I seek to play and to sing at the frequency — the vibration sound — that the Lord wants to operate in at the moment. This is where we need to be, folks! This is where our fellowship needs to be. This is where our corporate worship needs to be. We can no longer just sing the songs we like to sing because they feel good or sound good. We need to sing and to worship precisely what we hear the Lord saying. Holy Spirit is faithful to give us exactly what needs to be played or sang. We just need to be sensitive to His prompts and respond.
I want to focus today on the differences in the various types of music — they are certainly evidenced in David’s Psalms — and the role they play in our responses to the Lord.
Consider the different types that David demonstrates to us. How about a prayer that is combined with praise?
Psalm 3: Lord, how are they increased that trouble me. Many are they that rise up against me. Many there be which say of my soul, there is no help for him in God.
But Thou, Oh Lord, art a shield for me; my glory and the lifter up of mine head.
What are we seeing and hearing? David begins with a prayer — a cry from his heart. But he doesn’t leave it there! He praises and worships God in the midst of his prayer.
The next few Psalms are prayers. David cries out to the Lord in the midst of the trials, the persecution from Saul, his being on the run for his life. But then we come to the Eighth Psalm.
Psalm 8:1: O LORD our Lord, how excellent is thy name in all the earth! who hast set thy glory above the heavens.
Things have changed, haven’t they? No we are offering up high praise to the Lord! It continues into the 9th Psalm:
Psalm 9:1-2: I will praise Thee, Oh Lord, with my whole heart; I will show forth all Thy marvelous works;
I will be glad and rejoice in Thee; I will sing praise to Thy name, Oh Most High!
(This, by the way, was the very first Psalm I set to music back in the early 1970’s. I introduced it for the first time at Fred Price’s fellowship in Los Angeles.)
We have a real shift when we come to Psalm 22. Now David begins to prophesy. He describes in great detail exactly what Jesus went through as He hung on the Cross.
Psalm 22:1: My God, My God! Why hast thou forsaken me? Why art Thou so far from helping me, and from the words of my roaring?
Psalm 22:14-18: I am poured out like water, and all my bones are out of joint: my heart is like wax; it is melted in the midst of my bowels.
My strength is dried up like a potsherd; and my tongue cleaveth to my jaws; and thou hast brought me into the dust of death.
For dogs have compassed me: the assembly of the wicked have enclosed me: they pierced my hands and my feet.
I may tell all my bones: they look and stare upon me.
They part my garments among them, and cast lots upon my vesture.
And that brings us to a unique Psalm, Psalm 23. Now we have a song that is at once a Testimony, Instruction, and Prophecy. Thus David establishes the fact that there are songs of Testimony, songs which testify of the specific goodness of the Lord in our life and speak of the things that He has done for us.
At the same time, he provides instruction for those who will hear and follow the pattern he lays out in this Psalm. He wraps up the Psalm with a prophecy of what will follow as a result.
Let’s skip forward to Psalm 33. Now we have a Psalm of rejoicing and praise.
Psalm 33:1-4: Rejoice in the LORD, O ye righteous: for praise is comely for the upright.
Praise the LORD with harp: sing unto him with the psaltery and an instrument of ten strings.
Sing unto him a new song; play skilfully with a loud noise.
For the word of the LORD is right; and all his works are done in truth.
Remember our discussion last week? Remember the use of the two words, chayel and zamar?
Chayel is the sound, the vibration (think of a tuning fork) that goes forth as one offers praise.
Zamar, on the other hand, is the vibration created when one plucks the strings of an instrument, like a harp, a guitar, or a myriad of other plucked string instruments.
The two of these words, strung together in numerous Psalms, describe exactly what David experienced as he ministered to the Lord with his instruments in praise and worship.
David had the sounds of testimony, the sounds of instruction, the sounds of prophecy, the sounds of praise, high praise, the sounds of prayer and the sounds of worship. More than that, he had the sounds of Throne worship.
We talk about praise and we talk about high praise. Let me illustrate.
The normal Hebrew word for praise is, halal. Depending on how this word is used, it can represent many things. Context plays an important role, and the breathing marks used with the word tell us a whole lot.
Dr. William Gesenius, in his Hebrew-Chaldee Lexicon tells us that halal can represent the following:
1. To shine (often used figuratively of God’s favor)
2. To flash forth light
3. To praise, to boast, be boastful
4. To make a boast
5. To be made praiseworthy, to be commended, to be worthy of praise
6. To Glory, to glorify
7. To make a fool of, to make into a fool
8. To act madly, act like a madman
We see this last illustration in Psalm 34 when David is in the court of the Philistine king, Abimelech, and Abimelech’s advisors begin to talk about David’s exploits and how he was the one of whom the Israelite women sang, “David hast slain his ten thousands.”
Psalm 34:1-4: I will bless the Lord at all times; His praise shall continually be in my mouth;
My soul shall make her boast in the Lord; the humble shall here thereof and be glad.
O magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt His name together.
I sought the Lord, and He heard me, and delivered me from all my fears.
We are told that as David sang this Psalm, he played the madman. He sang and danced with all his might. He rapped out a rhythm with his hands on the doors of the city gate. He sang so vociferously that spit came slinging out of his mouth.
His actions and praise and dancing scared the Philistine soldiers, along with Abimelech. They thought David had lost his mind. They didn’t know what to do with someone who had gone insane, so they opened the doors of the city and kicked him out. They were afraid his insanity would come off on them!
It is a bit humorous, but I sometimes think the religious community reacts the same way to the kind of real praise and worship that the Lord is looking for. Sometimes it is vociferous, sometimes it is really “different” and sometimes it produces results that are unexpected.
Good! That’s where we will wrap up today. Let’s finish next week.
In case you are missing out on real fellowship in an environment of Ekklesia, our Sunday worship gatherings are available by conference call – usually at about 10:45AM Pacific. That conference number is (712) 770-4160, and the access code is 308640#. We are now making these gatherings available by Skype. If you wish to participate by video on Skype, my Skype ID is regner.capener. If you miss the live voice call, you can dial (712) 770-4169, enter the same access code and listen in later. The video call, of course, is not recorded – not yet, anyway.
Blessings on you!
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Temple, Texas 76504
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