“Praise God from Whom all blessings flow;
Praise Him all creatures here below;
Praise Him above, ye heavenly hosts;
Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.”
Many of us may have grown up with “The Doxology,” a hymn sung during church services for centuries. For me, we sang it at the end of each week’s service in my grandfather’s small country church. It was a staple that would help us transition from the sermon’s lesson and focus our thoughts back on the goodness of God before heading into the week. The hymn, inspired by Psalms 100, is named for “saying glory,” a fitting title for a song that continuously reminds us to praise God. Its lyrics cover the basics — as the provider of all gifts, God deserves to be worshiped by all creatures, people, and even angels, and He deserves this glory in each of His facets. We can, and should, follow this model of praise in our daily lives:
- Remember that God is the provider of all things. He gives us protection, care, our talents and daily gifts, and so much more. Even when we feel forlorn, we can follow the Israelites’ model and think on the gifts God has provided in the past; He is the same God Who protected the Israelites as they wandered the desert, Who provided an overabundance of manna for their breakfast each morning, Who gave His Son to be the final redemption sacrifice for our sins, and Who ultimately resurrected that Son so that we have the same promise of eternal life with Him.
- Join all living things in praise. God is also the Creator of the earth, and all things living on it. As the One Who created and gives life, He is also deserving of worship, as Psalms 150:6 urges: “Let everything that has breath praise the Lord. Praise the Lord.” In fact, when Jesus entered Jerusalem during his years of ministry, Pharisees chastised his disciples for praising his name in apparent blasphemy. To this, Jesus replied, “‘if they keep quiet, the stones will cry out.'” Jesus knew that, even if the living refused to praise God, other aspects of God’s creation would recognize Him and make His goodness known.
- Worship like the angels. Not only did God create the earth, but He is also the King of the heavens as well. He governs a mighty force of angels, as glimpsed in Isaiah 6 and Revelation 4, and even the followers of Satan obey Him, according to Job 1:6-13. When even the powerful beings of the spiritual world must bow before God and recognize His glory, how much more should we do the same?
- Know and praise all of God. The Trinity of God is one of the most wonderful and miraculous aspects of Him. The omnipotent deity of God wanted to know His human creations so much that He became human. Jesus was God in human form, born to a human mother and full of human life. He experienced the earth in a way God the Father could not, and by doing so He forged a connection between mankind and the Creator. After Jesus’s sacrificial death, resurrection, and ascension to heaven, the final facet of the Trinity joined Christian believers in the form of the Holy Ghost, sent to be a Counselor and a remnant of God in the heart of His believers. All those who come to know God receive the Holy Ghost, replacing their old selves with the new Spirit, which helps them become more like God. And so, all three aspects of God serve a different role in the lives of believers, and all three deserve praise for those roles.
“The Doxology” is one of many hymns written to praise God. What is a traditional hymn you enjoy singing (or even humming) to help you focus on His goodness?