John T. Willis

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Lift Up Your Voice

Throughout scripture, there is a call for God's people: "Lift Up Your Voices." It is very natural for all human beings to lift up their voices in different kinds of contexts. Here we will mention only a few of these contexts.

1. A Situation in which someone is mistreated by another person or group.
When Jacob [with the help of Rebekah] deceived Isaac and received his blessing, Esau killed an animal and prepared it and brought it to his father. When Esau realized that Isaac had already blessed Jacob [thinking Jacob was Esau], Genesis 27:38 says:
"Esau said to his father, 'Have you only one blessing, father? Bless me, me also, father!' And Esau LIFTED UP HIS VOICE and wept."
When someone mistreats us, it is imperative that we "lift up our voices." This is what Martin Luther King, Jr., did when narrow-minded Anglo-Americans were mistreating African-Americans in the USA. He "lifted up his voice," and as a result changed our nation.

2. A Situation in which people are under great stress.
When the twelve spies returned from spending forty days in the promised land of Canaan and ten of the spies gave a negative report, Numbers 14:1 says:
"Then all the congregation LIFTED UP THEIR VOICES with a loud cry, and the people wept all night."
When we expect to receive a good report and the report is very bad, it is natural for us to "lift up our voices" and complain. This is what God's people did when they received the bad report from the ten spies.

3. A Situation in which people sin and a godly spokesperson rebukes them.
During the time of the Judges, an angel came to the people of God and rebuked them because they did not obey Yahweh and thus Yahweh will punish them. Judges 2:4 says:
"When the angel of the Lord spoke these words to all the Israelites, the people LIFTED UP THEIR VOICES and wept."
When godly people rebuke us because we commit sins against God, we need to "lift up our voices" in remorse and repents, and return to God.

4. A Situation in which God's people are worshipping God.
2 Chronicles 5 relates the account in which Solomon and the priests brought the ark of the covenant into the Jerusalem temple which they had just finished, and were worshipping God. 2 Chronicles 5:13 says:
"It was the duty of the trumpeters and singers to make themselves heard in unison in praise and thanksgiving to the Lord, and when they LIFTED UP THEIR VOICES in song, with trumpets and cymbals and other musical instruments, in praise to the Lord,
For he is good,
his steadfast love endures forever,
the house, the house of the Lord, was filled with a cloud."
When we gather as God's people to praise and give thanks to God, it is important for us to "lift up our voices" to God.

Share YOUR experiences and thoughts and feelings with others. Let me hear from YOU.

John Willis


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