And now my head shall be lifted up above my enemies all around me, and I will offer in His tent sacrifices with shouts of joy; I will sing and make melody to the Lord. | Psalm 27:6
When you read many psalms by David, you’ll notice a recurring theme where he is surrounded by enemies, but David has faith that God will provide salvation. I’m currently working on a word study on “joy”, and my research led me to this particular verse in chapter 27. The whole chapter shows how David loves and trusts God, and his response to God’s deliverance is to offer sacrifices of teruah.
What is a teruah? It’s literally a shout of joy! After I let that digest a bit, I got perplexed. How is a verbal expression of joy the equivalent of a sacrifice? I was under the impression that sacrifices during David’s era consisted of shedding the blood of an animal of some kind like a lamb, bull, or a pigeon on an altar by the High Priest. It didn’t make sense!
Then I thought about the present day. We don’t offer animal sacrifices anymore because Jesus was the perfect sacrifice once and for all! No more shedding of blood required because Jesus paid the penalty. As the wheels continued to spin in my brain, I just kept wondering about what we DO in the local church/assembly. Then it finally hit me! We have corporate worship.
Worship is not just how you sing for fifteen minutes on Sunday morning. True worship is what you do outside the church building on a day to day basis. How you are alone and how you interact with others all play a major role in how you worship God. In a corporate setting, worship includes prayer, speaking Words of truth, and singing praises. The one question I have been chewing on for the past few days is this… Is worship and sacrifice interchangeable? Check out this passage:
For the bodies of those animals whose blood is brought into the holy places by the high priest as a sacrifice for sin are burned outside the camp. So Jesus also suffered outside the gate in order to sanctify the people through His own blood. Therefore let us go to Him outside the camp and bear the reproach He endured. For here we have no lasting city, but we seek the city that is to come. Through Him then let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of lips that acknowledge His name. Do not neglect to do good and to share what you have, for such sacrifices are pleasing to God. | Hebrews 13:11-16
I can’t say it any better than God. It’s right there in black and white. God desires us to CONTINUALLY offer sacrifices to Him. Well, David had it right. He offered sacrifices of teruah, and we are called to do the same. Praise God with your voice, your hands, and your heart every single day!