So, it is clear that God’s objective in our prayers is to take that which is in heaven and make it available on earth. Clearly, more often than not, it is not like heaven here on earth. Here, there is sin, suffering and sickness, loneliness, anxiety and confusion, war, hate and the absence of God in the lives of people. This is not what God intended for us here on earth. Despite the consequences of the gift of free will, which makes it possible for us have the capacity to love (the greatest gift God could give us), God has given us the mechanism by which we can make a difference here on earth... PRAYER!
It is important that we get into agreement with heaven. In a sense, prayer is about getting in sync with God’s will for earth and echoing that back to God on this side of heaven. His instructions for the act of prayer are that we ask for His Kingdom and authority be done in the manner that it is carried out in heaven. The implication of Matthew 6:10 is that it is God’s desire that the way it is in heaven is what He wants for us to petition Him for it to be here on earth. Prayer is the battleground that is where the warfare of heaven is waged for earth and we are the combatants. It is a strange paradox that this battle is fought with specific involvement of the most gentle and beautiful of instruments – the harp!
But before we discuss the Biblical role of the harp as seen around the Throne of God, let’s consider what it is like in heaven so we can grasp what it is that we are praying for when we ask God for His will to be done on earth “as it is in heaven.”
In heaven there is a total compliance to the will of God. It is the Head Quarters of God’s base of operations. The glorious truth is that it is His plan to one day relocate to planet earth (see Zechariah 14 and Revelation 21). But until then we are to occupy here on earth till He comes (see Luke 19:13 KJV) and the primary weapon of our warfare is prayer. So what is it that through our prayers we are to apprehend in heaven and bring to earth? In heaven there is only love and beauty, eternal life and joy unspeakable. It is the place where there is no lack and the location of the bank of His riches in glory that we are to draw from to finance the Kingdom of God on earth. Paul the Apostle concurs...
Philippians 4:19 “And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.”
One of the key aspects of Throne Room Worship that is rarely discussed is the use of the harp. As an international harp instructor and one of the few ministries that provide teaching about the very Biblical use of the harp in the prophetic, I provide a unique perspective on this topic. So if we are to observe one of the primary activities around the Throne of God we would be negligent if we did not include this mysterious aspect of the mechanism by which our prayers are handled in Heaven. It requires the we ask the question...
Why the Harp?
The harp is one of the most ancient instruments ever conceived. In Genesis 4:21, the Bible tells us that Jubal was known as the “father of all who play the harp and flute” and most cultures have their own version of a harp. However, the harp is an instrument that finds its origin in eternity past in the realm of heaven. The book of Revelation gives us a snap shot of the presence of the harp in heaven and we see that it has a particular function in the economy of heaven unlike any other instrument.
Despite my bias as a harpist towards elevating the use of the harp, in the scriptures, the only other instrument mentioned in heaven is the trumpet. Most likely there are other instruments used in heaven, but it is clear that this instrument has been chosen by God for specific reasons that begs to ask the question “Why the harp?” There must be something about the harp that intrinsically fulfills a role that affects the physics of heaven in such a way that the plans and purposes of God are realized.
Did you know every prayer that is prayed is ushered into the Throne Room of God by the sound of an elder playing harp?
Revelation 5:8 reveals to us...
“...the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb, each having a harp, and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints.”
This scripture reveals that you have an elder playing a harp over your prayers in heaven right now! And so we see that there is a specific connection between prayer and harp worship. Our prayers actually appear before God in golden bowls in the form of incense. In the physics of heaven, when we pray, a particulate of some kind physically manifests itself in the bowls. King David, in Psalm 141:2, uses this metaphor “Let my prayer be set before You as incense”, but it appears that this is more than a metaphor. Prayers literally manifest physically in the reality of heaven. The smell literally changes the atmosphere in heaven. Many religions on earth use incense in their prayer rituals. Even with Moses, in his revelation of the order of service in his tabernacle, and later in Solomon’s temple, God commanded the Levites to offer incense in their religious observances. However, this use of incense pales in comparison to the real manifestation of our prayers before the Throne of God.
The use of incense on earth is a shadow to help us to understand what is really going on when we pray. Hebrews 10:1 and Colossians 2:17 refer to the law as being a shadow, which only gives a rough outline of the real item that is casting a shadow. When we understand the reality of what is happening when we pray, we have confidence that something real will happen in response. There is a real “High Priest” who will respond to our prayer as Hebrews 4:16 assures us...
“Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.”
When we grasp the reality of what is happening in heaven in response to our prayers, we develop confidence in the reality that God, in fact, wants to answer our prayers. This confidence is called faith and faith is the currency of heaven by which we obtain results here on earth. The Apostle John tells us in 1 John 5:14-15:
14 Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. 15 And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him.
When we get a revelation of the willingness of the Lord to respond to our prayers, our faith grows and our prayer life becomes an exciting adventure. As we draw near to God, He draws near to us (James 4:8) and He promises that we will find Him if we search for Him with all of our heart (Jeremiah 29:13). These portions of scripture imply a high level of intimacy with God as we interact with Him in prayer. This is why the beauty of the harp is the perfect instrument to accompany our prayers.
All of this interaction with incense and our prayers in the heavenly realm is accompanied by the 24 elders playing harp around the throne of God. Is it that God simply likes the sound of harps? Apparently He does, but for what purpose?
Let’s for a moment consider the mechanism of the harp. The harp, in actuality, is a very simple device. All it is, is a string stretched across a frame of some kind. The strings are pulled tight so as to vibrate musically at a set of predetermined frequencies depending on its length and tension. (Note that the frame must be strong as a significant number of strings pull at the frame building a fair amount of kinetic energy that is stored up in the system.) That’s it. Technically, it gets a bit complicated, when you add levers or pedals that activate a mechanism to change the key of the instrument (see my solution to the complexity of this with Harpella at www.harptronics.com) but essentially the harp is as simple a musical instrument as you can get. There is something elemental and ancient about the concept.
Now let’s consider the creation and nature of all matter in the universe. Currently, in the field of Quantum Physics, String Theory is one of the most accepted theories of all that is. Please note the humor in juxtaposing harp strings with a grand theory of everything, but bear with me (also much more detail on this can be found in my book “Frequency of Faith – Kingdom Thoughts on Light, Sound and Quantum Physics). Simply stated, everything is comprised of filaments stretched out as strings of vibrating energy. All atoms have an initial potential energy infused into them at the time of their creation. This is evident in Einstein’s famous E=mc2 equation showing the relationship between energy and matter (and of course the release of this energy when splitting the atom). Before anything existed God used the vibration of His voice to create everything. He simply spoke and the whole universe began reverberating with the energy of His omnipotence. In a sense, like the well tuned harp, every atom was created with an initial “tightening of the strings” when He wound up creation.
So let’s connect the dots. Playing the harp sets up a harmonious vibration that, when played as worship, carries the presence of God. In fact, our prayers are ushered into God’s presence with the sound of the harp via golden bowls. This is comparable to how a radio receives waves at certain frequencies – interestingly, a radio signal often uses what is called a “carrier frequency” to deliver the signal to our radios. So it appears that harp worship is the medium by which our prayers are conveyed to God. Part of this beautiful mystery is the opportunity for us to reciprocate heaven with the playing harp here on earth.
Study Questions (useful in a group discussion of this material):
1. What is God’s objective when we pray?
2. What are the consequences of “free will” and what capacity do we have as a result of this?
3. What is the mechanism by which we can make a difference here on earth?
4. What are God’s instructions to us in regards to our prayers?
5. What tool is used in the battle of prayer that is paradoxical?
6. What is it that through our prayers we are to apprehend in heaven and bring to earth?
7. What is one of the key aspects of Throne Room Worship that is rarely discussed?
8. Who is the father of all that play the harp and where is this found in the Bible?
9. What are the only two instruments found in Heaven that are named in the Bible?
10. What two objects do the 24 elders possess and what are they used for?
11. What is King David’s metaphor for prayer and is it in fact a metaphor?
12. What is it that we can have confidence in as mentioned in 1 John 5:14-15
13. What does God promise us in Jeremiah 29:13
14. What do harps and the Quantum theory of matter have in common?
15. How are radio signals similar to prayer as it relates to the sound of the harp?
The answer to these questions are found in the text above, but will be posted specifically in the next session of Throne Room Worship, which will be available by enrolling and becoming a member of the KingsBridge Study Center.
Welcome to Throne Room Worship the venue in our KingsBridge Study Center that focuses on the reality of the spiritual dynamic that surrounds the Throne of God. When we understand the mystery of this heavenly realm, we can comprehend how the Love of the Lord is extended to earth from this Holy Place where our prayers are received and heard... and answered! It is our goal to help usher you into the presence of God through the door of this revelation, and in so doing, increase the effectiveness of your prayers and be a catalyst for you to experience the Glory of God.
We invite you to take in this first session of Throne Room Worship in The KingsBridge Study Center, free of charge, but hope you will be inspired to join our membership (fees are $20 USD per month or $30 for all 3 areas of study) and continue on with our Virtual Study Hall. To join please click on the Enroll button above.
The Mystery of Throne Room Worship, is the subtitle of my book project entitled “As It Is In Heaven”. (Click here to see a short video about the book) The premise that the way it is in Heaven, is what God desires for it to be on earth, is the basis for the advancement of the Kingdom of God. And so, this foundational understanding is critical if we are to fulfill our identity and destiny here on earth as the Children of the King of Heaven.
Jesus taught us the ultimate prayer principles in Matthew 6, but in verse 10 He states
“Your kingdom come. Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.”