I Will Lift Up My Hands
“I will praise you as long as I live, and in your name I will lift up my hands.” (Psalm 63:4 NIV)
A lot of the early Christians were killed because they wouldn’t bow to Caesar. They wouldn’t accept that the ruler of the Roman Empire was God. Even when their lives were at stake, they worshiped and bowed down to Jesus Christ alone. As believers, do we have the same commitment to worship God above all other gods?
The Bible speaks of lifting up our hands to God as an act of worship. I love to lift my hands to God because it means, “You, Lord, are great and I am small; and I need you.” It means praise; it means love; it means adoration. It means, “I worship you alone, oh Lord.”
It is not uncommon to see people lifting their hands nowadays, but it's not always done in worship of the Lord. Sometimes it's folks coming to the front of an auditorium at a rock concert or some other event to sway and lift their hands as they praise, not a Roman emperor, but their own earthly idols.
There are also intangible idols that even Christians can fall prey to, such as the idols of money, fame, power, and social status. The breathless pursuit and worship of these “gods” invariably take us away from our pursuit of the only true God, leaving precious little time to spend in his presence and in his Word. In the end, these gods—"which are not gods," in the words of the prophet Jeremiah (Jeremiah 16:20)—leave us feeling empty and unfulfilled, because we were made to worship God alone. On the other hand, as we spend time seeking God and his righteousness, spending time in his Word and honoring him with our lips and the raising of our hands, we will find that the things we need will be given to us as well (Matthew 6:33).
Let’s purpose in our hearts in this new year: I won’t give my adoration to anyone but the King of kings and Lord of lords! The Lord will help us by his Holy Spirit if this is the desire of our hearts in 2019.
Read Psalm 63:1-11.