The thought on my mind deserves a lot of contemplation and I feel like a few quick notes are only a clumsy attempt to describe something that is bigger than my ability. It has to do with the relationship between our methods of expression and our devotion to God. Among the Jews there is a Sabbath liturgy that says:
“By the mouth of the upright you are praised;
By the words of the righteous you are blessed;
By the tongue of the faithful you are extolled
And within the holy you are sanctified.”
The levels, or types, of expression are mouth, words, tongue and within. The identification is the upright, righteous, faithful and holy. The result is praise, blessing, extolling (to praise highly), and sanctified.
Those who reach the lowest stage of devotion are called the upright; their worship is expressed through the mouth. Higher than these are the righteous; and their worship is not expressed through the mouth but in the mere movement of the lips. Higher than these are the faithful; their worship is on the tongue; it does not even pass the lips. The highest kind of worship is the holiest; their worship is hidden and concealed within them and is apparent only to Him who knows all secrets.
Each of these expressions goes from the most outward to the most inward. Silence is the ultimate and the mouth filled praise is the least level of praise. There are times when in community, shared praise from many mouths, words and tongues are simply ways to escape the silence. What is within is revealed first in silence and not in sound. Sound and noise can be much like masks to hide the reality of our inner souls.
“Out of the mouth of infants and nursing babies you have prepared praise.” Jesus