Do you have a reason to shout! I have to admit that I am as guilty of this as any other rabid football fan during the college football season. When the big games are on, I find myself talking to and sometimes shouting at the television screen as if I were standing on the sideline with the coach! We find ourselves shouting for many different reasons, some positive and some not so positive. But what if making this kind of “joyful” noise could actually be a way to rejoice and glorify God in worship? This kind of joyful shouting brings us to the seventh and final word in our series on the BIG words for worship.
We are not told what Gideon said when his army of 300 men caused the retreat of an enemy army that was too numerous to count. This enemy had become as “thick as locusts,” with camels that “could no more be counted than the sand on the seashore” (Judges 7:12). Yet, with only 300 men, God brought about an amazing victory that was against all odds and would have caused Gideon and his troops to shout out victorious praises to God. That is the kind of context where the Hebrew word, “shabach” finds its origin as a classic word for worship. It is used only eleven times in the Old Testament, but each time it captures a moment when there is a reason to glorify God with a declaration of victory. The word literally means to raise up a holy roar for the glory of the Lord.
Think about a time when you found yourself joining in this holy roar. Was it a shout of praise when you understood the beauty of your salvation for the first time? Could it have been a shout of praise with the birth of a child or the healing of a loved one? Perhaps Sunday morning could become one of those moments as we celebrate our victory in Jesus and join together with one collective voice for the glory of the Lord. Let our holy roar be heard! -Jason