For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds.
II Corinthians 10:4
As military soldiers go into battle, they have to know with a
certainty that their weapons are in good condition. The anticipation of utilizing
those weapons is ever present, so not only do they have to be maintained, the
user has to know how and when to use them. They usually have
a clear target, have studied the enemy to gain as good an understanding as possible
of how the enemy operates, and from there have mapped out a clear strategy for
overtaking the enemy.
As this is all true in the physical realm, it is also true in the spirit realm. The Word of God tells us we have an enemy--the devil, and provides us with weapons and strategies to use against him. One of those weapons is praise. We see in Psalm 8:2: “Out of the mouths of babes and sucklings hast thou ordained strength, because of thine enemies; that thou might test still the enemy and the avenger.” As you study this passage in other versions of the Bible, the word “praise” is used instead of the word “strength.”
From a military perspective, guns are used in a hostile environment to ward off predators. If there’s one thing we can always expect from our enemy, it’s a hostile environment. Just as guns launch bullets, our bodies being the temples of the Holy Ghost have to engage our lips to launch scud missiles of praise. Sometimes we keep the praises of God inside our hearts. And as powerful as that is, how much more power would we see in operation when we open our mouths? The devil can’t hear our thoughts, but he can hear what we say. Let him hear you say “I will bless the Lord at all times; His praise shall continually be in my mouth” (Psalm 34:1). In Psalm 149:6 we read “Let the high praises of God be in their mouth, and a two-edged sword in their hand.” Let the devil hear you say “Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised…” (Psalm 48:1(a)). Jesus said in Matthew 12:34(b) “Out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks”. Go ahead and send that praise in your heart out of your mouth!
Guns are also used to ward off or destroy an enemy. This is precisely what happened in 2 Chronicles Chapter 20. King Jehoshaphat stationed a praise choir in front of the army as they headed out to the battleground. And as they sang praises to God, their enemies, which God had already told them they would not have to fight, destroyed one another! It was as they opened their mouths that their enemies were destroyed.
A very important fact of military training is that soldiers know and be trained on how his/her weapon operates; and how and when to use it. As soldiers in the spirit realm, we train our tongues and our inner man as we speak forth the praises of God daily—not just on Sunday. Enemy attack is a good training ground for firing our weapons of praise. (I will cover sacrificial praise in a future primer). But don’t wait until the enemy shows himself to speak out God’s praises. Be ready at any moment to use your weapon. That takes training; it takes getting into the Word and training your spirit to know the power that belongs to you as you shout unto God with the voice of triumph (Psalm 47:1). One thing you cannot do with your mouth closed is shout! Living the praise lifestyle doesn’t mean problems won’t come to you. It does mean, however, that with the high praises of God on your lips, no adversity can overtake you because you’re free. Training your spirit to continually bless God will bring you freedom. Paul and Silas were physically in jail, but spiritually they were free. That’s how they were able to sing in that dark, lonely jail cell. They knew who they were. They knew how to use their weapons. They kept their guns cleaned and oiled-—ready to use.
Today’s challenge? Take your praise off the shelf, out of the closet, or wherever you’ve stashed it, return to the school of the Word and learn how your weapon will work for you when you learn to fire it. Clean you gun!
Donna Renay Patrick is a worship leader, musician, praise & worship conference instructor and the founder of WORDshop Ministries based in Lewisville, Texas. This article used by permission.