Psalm 47 is another written by the sons of Korah who were Levites and involved with music and the tabernacle/temple activities. They begin with a bang. “Clap your hands, all peoples! Shout to God with loud songs of joy”! I can’t think of anywhere in scripture that we are told to keep our worship of God quiet and hidden. Certainly not what we hear in the Psalms, and the call here is to worship loud and proud. We need to exalt our God with all we are. Scripture tells us to keep our prayers and giving a bit more secretive, but not praise and worship. We are to shout it from the mountain tops that Jesus Christ is Lord.
Why be so vocal? “For the Lord, the Most High, is to be feared, a great king over all the earth”. Because He is worthy. He is the Most High and over all the earth. We are not worshipping a god, but the God of all the universe. “He subdued peoples under us, and nations under our feet. He chose our heritage for us, the pride of Jacob whom he loves”. We are blessed by Him in every way. The prior Psalm focused on the security of His people. Now we are told to let the world know that He is faithful and has delivered us. We are to rejoice and be happy and do it publicly and openly.
We’re told over and over in this chapter to do two things: shout to God and sing praises to our King. This isn’t to be quiet and muted but loud and enthusiastic praise. We aren’t to whisper our praises but let them flow like the sound of a trumpet, bold and powerful full of joy. “Sing praises to God, sing praises! Sing praises to our King, sing praises”! One thing I often watch at a church service is how involved the people in the congregation are in singing. We are told to sing over and over. It is a way to praise our God. It’s how we exalt His holy name.
Guzik tells us that this is a Psalm that teaches us how to praise God:
- Praise Him cheerfully when you clap your hands as an expression of your inward joy.
- Praise Him universally together with all you peoples who should praise the Lord.
- Praise Him vocally as you shout unto God with the voice of triumph.
- Praise Him frequently, as the idea of sing praises is repeated often. You cannot praise Him too much.
- Praise Him intelligently, as you are to sing praises with understanding and to know and proclaim the reasons for our praise.
He is worthy. “God reigns over the nations; God sits on his holy throne”. There is no other like Him. The throne is not empty. It belongs to Him alone. He is there being God and looking over all His people. He is worthy of our praise!