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Praise God, Hallelujah!

Devotions

I don’t know about you, but I have started more books than I have finished. I’m just not always able to make it to the end. However, the last five chapters of Psalms are so incredibly life giving that to miss them would be like sleeping through Thanksgiving Day dinner.

These last five chapters are sometimes referred to as The Hallelujah Psalms. This title is appropriate, since each psalm begins and ends with the phrase “Praise the Lord” The word Lord is often in capital letters in our English Bibles, because in the original language, this is the word Yahweh. It is also important to note that the Hebrew word Hallelu means “praise.” Therefore, when we put the Hallelu and Yah together we get Hallelujah, which means “Praise the Lord.”

In our text today, we see the phrase repeated four times. In verse 2, the Psalmist literally writes, “I will hallelujah all my life.” But what does the life of praise look like? The Psalmist goes on to tell us that the person who lives this life does not put their trust in princes or moral men (vv. 3–4), but rather in Yahweh, the “Maker of heaven and earth” (vv. 5–6). Verses 7–9 expound upon Yahweh’s justice for the oppressed and righteousness for the troubled. The final verse concludes by acknowledging Yahweh’s eternal reign for all generations. Then, just as the psalm began, the Psalmist proclaims, “Hallelujah!”

This psalm, like the four that follow, begins and ends with praise to Yahweh. It also goes deep and draws attention to why one should praise Yahweh all of one’s life. Let us not forget that God has called us to hallelujah all our lives as well.

Apply the Word

When people look at your life, do they see praise? To be more specific, when someone looks at the beginning, middle, or end of your day or week, do they see you praising the Lord? At what time do you struggle most with praising the Lord? Perhaps whenever you don’t feel like praising the Lord, read one of The Hallelujah Psalms.

BY Chris Rappazini

Chris Rappazini is the associate professor and program head of the BA and MA in Pastoral Studies at Moody Bible Institute and Moody Theological Seminary. He is the vice president of the Evangelical Homiletics Society and previously served as the associate minister of preaching and teaching at Southside Christian Church in Spokane, Washington. While currently on sabbatical from teaching at Moody, Chris and his wife, Ashley, and their three children reside in Texas.

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