(BY NGOZI ADIGHIBE)
Christians must also spend time to praise God, because the sacrifice of praise is pleasing to God.
This was the submission of the Most Rev. Nicholas D. Okoh, the Primate of All Nigeria Anglican Communion and Bishop of Abuja diocese at this year’s diocesan Easter Singspiration programme held at St. Matthew’s Anglican Church, Maitama, Abuja. Speaking on the topic, “The Sacrifice of Praise,” Primate Okoh charged the congregation to join the choir to sing to the glory of God for the power of the resurrection.
He explained that God saved the world from the power of sin and death, and so, He is entitled to the sacrifice of praise.
The Cleric cited scriptures, where believers are charged to praise God, and further drew a comparison between the old way of sacrifice and the new way. He said that in the Old Testament, the blood of animals was used to cleanse the sins of man, but in the New Testament, Jesus’ blood was used to atone for man’s sins once and for all. He added that after Jesus’ death on the cross, animal sacrifice on the altar was no longer needed, because Christ’s sacrifice was superior to that of any other. Hence, he called on all present to appreciate Jesus, who offered His life to save mankind.
The Bishop of Abuja Anglican diocese pointed out that those at the programme were expected to offer two things- themselves as living sacrifices and the sacrifice of praise. He said that some do not understand that singing is a form of sacrifice and therefore they do not see it as an offering unto God. Primate Okoh emphasized that the sacrifice of praise is an act of worship, adding that when one lifts God up in songs of praises, God is pleased.
The Primate of all Nigeria, Anglican Communion concluded his brief exhortation by reiterating why it is important for Christians, the Church and family to praise God. He said that when believers praise God, God is pleased and He meets their needs and answers their prayers.
Highpoints of the Singspiration programme included song renditions by the Abuja Diocesan Mass Choir, Solo performances, and special song presentations by the Choirs of the Chapel of the Advent, Primate’s office and St. Jude’s Church, Wuse Zone 3, Abuja. It was indeed a service of worship and thanksgiving to the Almighty God.