Luke 19:40- But He answered and said to them, “I tell you that if these should keep silent, the stones would immediately cry out.” NKJV
Jesus was entering the city of Jerusalem. The people were going wild with their praises. As He progressed down the street, they threw their robes in the way so His donkey would not have to walk on the stone pavements. Luke wrote these words:
Then, as He was now drawing near the descent of the Mount of Olives, the whole multitude of the disciples began to rejoice and praise God with a loud voice for all the mighty works they had seen, saying: “ ‘Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord!’ Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!”Luke 19:37-38 NKJV
The word for praise used in this verse is “aineō,” which corresponds with the Hebrew word tehillah, which means to sing! As the people sang joyously over the entry of Jesus into Jerusalem, the Pharisees were upset. David Guzik, in his commentary on Luke, wrote these words:
Nothing tells Satan and his followers that they have lost like the praises of God ringing in their ears. Satan loses because when God’s people are really worshipping, their hearts and minds are on Him — and not on sin, self, or Satan’s distractions.Blue Letter Bible, David Guzik, Luke 19 commentary
These words sum up the power of praise. As we focus on praising our Lord, we have little time for distractions or other diversions that try to pull us off course. While the people were in united praise, they were not concerned about anything else.
However, the Pharisees couldn’t stand the praise that was directed at Jesus! After all, if the people were praising Jesus, then there was no focus left to give them praise. So they did the only thing that they could. They told Jesus to rebuke the people, to tell them to stop giving Him the praise due Him. Jesus responded,
“I tell you that if these should keep silent, the stones would immediately cry out.”Luke 19:40 NKJV
This is an interesting statement, for we all know that rocks are inanimate objects and, therefore, they do not have the breath to praise the Lord. Yet, Jesus said that if the people didn’t praise Him, the rocks would cry out!
In Psalm 148, we see that the psalmist wrote that all of creation praises God:
Praise Him, all His angels; praise Him, all His hosts! Praise Him, sun and moon; praise Him, all you stars of light! Praise Him, you heavens of heavens, and you waters above the heavens!Psalm 148:2-4 NKJV
The psalmist continues by commanding everything in the seas and the oceans to praise the Lord. He calls for the lightning, the hail, the snow, and the clouds to praise the Lord! He remembers that the mountains, hills, trees, animals, birds, and every living thing on the earth are to give praise to the Lord!
In Psalm 98, the psalmist wrote:
Let the rivers clap their hands; let the hills be joyful together before the Lord,Psalm 98:8-9 NKJV
Even Isaiah declared that creation gives praise to God:
“For you shall go out with joy, and be led out with peace; the mountains and the hillsIsaiah 55:12 NKJV
shall break forth into singing before you, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.
I see it like this: creation has its way of praising God, and I don’t want to take its praise from it. By the same token, it can’t praise God for me! I’m going to give God all the praise due to His name because the rocks can’t praise Him like I can!
The rocks can’t praise Jesus for saving me! Only I can give Him praise for that! You might also praise Him for my salvation, but you can’t praise Him like I can for it! No one else loves me like He does! No one has delivered me like He has! And no one has healed me like He has healed me! Therefore, while others may rejoice with me, they can’t praise Him for the things He has done for me, like I can praise Him!
By the same token, although I might praise God for His marvelous works in your lives, only you can truly praise Him for what He has done! Only you know how good God has really been to you! Only you can testify to the greatness of His faithfulness towards you!
So not only should we not sit back and allow the rocks to praise God on our behalf, we should not allow others to praise Him more than we do for what He has done! God is too good to not give Him praise! God is too faithful to not be praised! There’s no other name whereby we can be saved except the name of Jesus, and we ought to praise Him for it! Don’t let the rocks beat you at praising God, for they have not experienced His goodness like we have!
As I conclude this mini-series on praise, for the moment, I just want to take some time and praise God for you! Although I am blogging in obedience to the prompting of the Holy Spirit, it would not have any value if you didn’t read it! Don’t ever think I am blogging for any reason other than to lift up the name of Jesus and encourage fellow believers! You!
So go ahead and give Him some praise so that the rocks and all of creation don’t beat you to it! Wonderful Jesus!