Yâdâh

Larry BruceWorship CornerLeave a Comment

May the peoples praise you, God;
may all the peoples praise you.

Psalm 67:3

Touchdown!!!! Goal!!! Grand Slam!!! 

Context is everything, of course. So let me explain… Last month, I shared that I would be writing in a ‘series’ of sorts by taking you through the seven Hebrew words that are all translated into one English word praise. When we read “praise” in the Bible, it could literally mean a number of different things based on what the actual Hebrew word was. Today, we look at the first word. 

So put yourself in a place where those phrases above have been shouted and picture in your mind what you see people doing. If you said they are on their feet, throwing their hands in the air and shouting, then we are on the same page. This active response, particularly hands raised, is the essence behind the first word of “praise” we see in Scripture: yâdâh (yaw-daw’). Yâdâh means to physically thrust or throw out the hand or fist, in an action similar to casting a stone or an arrow, to revere or worship in thanks with extended hands. This is a good praise word to start with because it exists 111 times in Scripture. 

There’s a celebratory and triumphant connotation involved, especially when you see where this term is found in the Psalms. In Psalm 145, for example, King David writes, “All your works praise [yâdâh] you, Lord; your faithful people extol you” (Psalms 145:10 NIV). In this Psalm, David declares that God’s people were so overcome with God’s faithfulness that they felt compelled to yâdâh their Lord, just like those in the stadium when their team scores the triumphant winning goal. 

How does this inform our worship? Well, it should be clear… Finding ourselves waiting expectantly on God for His faithfulness, perhaps late in the 4th quarter of our circumstances, this is how we respond to His working all things together for the good of those who love and trust Him (Rom. 8:28). This is our eternal response for what God has done for us in Christ. As we worship in this life, we raise our hands high, and praise Him for who He is, what He has done, and what is yet to come.

Yâdâh.

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