Sunday, April 14, 2019
There are 7 Hebrew words in the Old Testament that we translate “praise” in English. They are: hallal, yadah, barak, tehillah, zamar, towdah, and shabach. Each gives us a slightly different understanding of what God asks from us as we approach His throne with praise.
Hallal means to shine, rave, boast… to act clamorously foolish. This is a dancing, excited, demonstrative kind of praise. This is what you might do and feel inside after you’ve just experienced a miracle and you can’t help but enthusiastically hoot and holler about what God has done.
Yadah means to revere, to worship, to give thanks. It means to shoot out one’s hands. This is a lifting of gratefulness to our God.
Barak means to kneel, to bless or to salute. This is the posture of a knight before his King, bowed low, ready to hear his next orders.
Tehillah is a song or hymn of praise. This is where we get the main idea that we should sing together in corporate worship, using music to express the greatness of our God.
Zamar is to pluck the strings. It’s to play an instrument, to make music with one’s fingers. This is where our guitarists do our praising for us! This is where the atmosphere is changed just because someone is playing their instrument. It’s a place where the tension of life sings a beautiful and haunting song to our Lord.
Towdah is a moment of confession and thanksgiving. This is praise for what God is going to do in the future. This is a combination of faith and praise, an outpouring of confidence in who our God is and what He has promised to do.
And last, but not least, Shabach. Shabach is an exclamation, a shout of praise. This is a roar of testimony for who God is and what He’s done for us. This is the moment of praise where you just can’t help yourself, but a great “whoop” of excitement comes pouring out.
So, thanks for coming together with us this morning and praising our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ corporately. God asks us to “praise him in the great congregation” in psalms (Psalm 35:18). Our hosanna went up and out to the heavens, saying once again to Jesus – You are our Lord, King, Savior. You are the Son of God, the one prophesied from the lineage of David. Blessed and holy are you! We remembered the Triumphal Entry together with joy. And in this, we allowed God to be enthroned upon our praises (Psalm 22:3). Thank you for participating with us!
Have a wonderful afternoon of Sabbath. And check in with us tomorrow as we talk through taking praise into our personal lives.
- Pastor Bethany