The Bible is replete with commands to praise God. God commands it because this is the ultimate goal of all who have believed – “to be glorified in his saints, and to be marveled at among all who have believed” (2 Thessalonians 1:10). Three times in Ephesians chapter one this great aim is proclaimed: “According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love: Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will, To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.” (vv. 4-6); we have been predestined and appointed to “that we should be to the praise of his glory” (v. 12); the Holy Spirit “is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory” (v. 14).
All the different ways God has chosen to display His glory in creation and redemption seem to reach their culmination in the praises of His redeemed people. God governs the world with glory precisely that He might be admired, marveled at, exalted, and praised. The climax of His happiness is the delight He takes in the echoes of His excellence in the praises of the saints.
But again and again, people stumble over this truth. People do not like to hear that God is uppermost in His own affections, or that He does all things for His own glory, or that He exalts Himself and seeks the praise of men.