Oh That Men Would Praise The Lord!

"Oh that men would praise the LORD for his goodness, and for his wonderful works to the children of men"

To praise means also to bless, it means to sing in honor of someone, it means to extol, to express respect and gratitude. Praise comes about because of what one has done, which is why David says, Bless the Lord Oh my soul and forget not His benefits. Praise goes hand in hand with remembering the works of the Lord. 

The Bible tells many remarkable stories and one of such is in Numbers 17, there are many lessons to learn in this chapter, today we focus on the part concerning praise. 

What happened in Numbers 17

The Lord said to Moses"Speak to the Israelites and get twelve staffs from them, one from the leader of each of their ancestral tribes.Write the name of each man on his staff. On the staff of Levi write Aaron’s name, for there must be one staff for the head of each ancestral tribe. Place them in the tent of meeting in front of the ark of the covenant law, where I meet with you. The staff belonging to the man I choose will sprout, and I will rid myself of this constant grumbling against you by the Israelites."

The Hebrew word matteh, means staff or rod. Staff/rod/scepter is the symbol of office or royalty.

  • it also stands as a symbol of authority, function, purpose
  • it signifies an embodiment of responsibility or will
  • it represents what you stand for
  • it also stands as a weapon
  • it can be used for support

Note that even though on the staff was written the name on each man, the staff wasn't for the person."On the staff of Levi write Aaron's name", the bearer of the staff represented their ancestral tribes. The staff stood for something that was bigger than the person. 

The staff stood for something that was bigger than the person.

Moses collects the staff of each tribe, one for the leader of each of their ancestral tribes. So, basically Moses gets these men's staffs and brings it before God. God tells him to deposit these in the tent of meeting, in front of the testimony- the prayer house, in the courts of Heaven

"The staff belonging to the man I choose will sprout" This verse is very interesting. It brings to mind John 15:16a where Jesus says, "You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit—fruit that will last" 

It is clear then that the choosing comes before the bearing of fruit. You bear fruit, not because you want to, or work hard to, it is simply because you have been chosen. You shall bear fruit because you have been chosen. Remember, "the staff belonging to the man I choose, will sprout"

Back to Numbers 17, verse 8, "The next day Moses entered the tent and saw that Aaron’s staff,which represented the tribe of Levi, had not only sprouted but had budded, blossomed and produced almonds"

Take note that Aaron's rod was displaying all four stages of growth. It had sprouted, it had budded, it had blossomed and produced almonds. I'll like to liken that to many of us on our christian race, consider carefully and you will see certain areas of your life, your ministry in these stages. Its a reminder to hold on to God words, testimonies and prophecies concerning your life. Somethings you have been perfected in them, somethings you are just learning how to become and to do, and somethings are just being brought to your notice that you should work on them.

In God's Kingdom, there is no stagnancy, - there is always a sprout somewhere, a bud, a blossom, a ripe fruit. Sometimes we don't see the fruits, but there'll be a sprout or a bud. At the end of day, "...all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose" (Romans 8:28).

Pay attention to the last part of Romans 8:28, let's not use this verse to represent our selfish interests, remember, the sprouting of Aaron's rod wasn't for Aaron but for the tribe of Levi and all of the Israelites.

Skipping to verse 10, God tells Moses “Put back Aaron’s staff in front of the ark of the covenant law, to be kept as a sign to the rebellious. This will put an end to their grumbling against me, so that they will not die.”

In essence, this verse is saying, bring back all your evidences, testimonies before God, the staff was to remain in front of the ark, continually place before God all that He has done, show Him, remind Him, Bless the Lord and forget not his benefits. Remember all the fruits, the blossoms, the sprouts, the buds. While we do not know what the journey holds ahead, we must remember and keep testifying of how far He has brought us. This is praising God.

As Christians, what is the opposite of praising? Its not necessarily cursing, it is murmuring, complaining, grumbling. 

Murmuring/Grumbling means obstinacy, refusal to surrender, refusal to obey. This is because you feel God hasn't done a lot, you feel let down and dissatisfied. Dissatisfaction with God causes us to criticize Him, to accuse Him, we begin to protest and object to God.

As God instructed Moses to Put back Aaron’s staff in front of the ark of the covenant law, I admonish you today, praise God at all times, never stop testifying to His goodness. Go in to your prayer tent, your secret place with Him, bless Him and cause yourself to remember all His benefits. 

Your praising God will stop you from dying, it will stop you from being burnt out, complaining leaves us burnt out. It is a good thing to praise the Lord. 

Oh that men would praise the LORD for his goodness, and for his wonderful works to the children of men!
 Psalm 107:31


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