How Praise and Worship Brings About Victory
Although in the passage of scripture in Joshua, it does not specifically state that the Israelite were praising God, the Hebrew word “rua”, which is here translated “shout” and “shouted”, is the same word used in Psalm 100:1 and Psalm 95:1 and translated “shout joyfully,” or make a joyful noise.” Other meanings include “battle cry,” “shout of triumph,’ and “sound an alarm.” “Rua” was used to denote any shout of joy or praise. In fact in public worship it would denote praise of the most animated kind. The priest blew the trumpets; the people raised a great shout of joy, triumph, and praise; God’s presence and power came down; and the walls of Jericho fell flat. When the praise went up the presence came down.
On the day of Pentecost, 120 believers were gathered together in an upper room in Jerusalem when the presence of God came down and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them. This was in fulfillment of Jesus’ promises to them. Jesus gave the last two of these promises on the day He ascended to Heave; the Spirit came ten days later. The disciples were not idle during that time, however. They spent those days preparing for His coming by creating an environment of praise.
Once, in the city of Philippi, Paul and Silas found themselves thrown into jail on trumped-up charges by the owners of a slave girl who had made her masters alot of money fortune-telling until Paul cast the demon out of her. Stripped, severely beaten, and with there feet locked in stocks, the two missionaries were not in a conducive environment for God’s presence. So they decided to create their own (Acts 16:25-26).
The basic definition of the word hymn is “a song of praise to God.” Paul and Silas were singing praise songs to the Lord when His presence came down and shook the foundations of the prison. Paul and Silas sang praises unto God, they were singing hymns of praise to God. So as you can clearly see praise was present in the prison before the presence came down. Through praise, Paul and Silas turned their prison into an “Eden” of God’s presence. As a result, that same night the jailer and his entire family were saved.