A CALL TO PRAISE YAH! - Psalm 135

Shabbat Shalom all,

Tonight I want us to be reminded of who we are to be continually praising and be reminded why we should not forget to be praising our Might Elohim! In a short message called, ‘A CALL TO PRAISE YAH!’, I hope that you all hear the clear call to PRAISE YAH! Please turn with me to Tehillim/Psalm 135 (Read)

Here we have a truly magnificent Psalm of praise for Elohim, and much of what is in this Psalm is also found in Tehillim/Psalm 115! I often recognise that with the business of daily schedules, demands and extreme pressures that most find themselves pegged under, the ability to be a praising people of Mighty Yah often dwindles and at times becomes non-existent. How is your praise life? Or rather put…. ‘are you praising Yah continually, despite the circumstances?’, or have you found yourselves being filled with unwanted and completely unnecessary grumbling? As we go through this Psalm, and meditate on the joyous truth that is being expressed here, it certainly has a way of causing us to respond positively to the call that this psalm is calling for – and that is to be praising YAH!

The Hebrew word here for praise is הָלַל halal Strong’s H1984 which means, ‘to shine; to be boastful; to be clear; to make a show; to rave; be foolish; to celebrate; praise, cheer, brag or extol, i.e., extol the greatness or excellence of a person, object or event.

We are to praise His Name, extol His name, make known His Name and revere His Name. His Name reveals His Character and we in our actions are to display His very character being shaped and formed in us – We praise the Name of יהוה, for His Name clearly declares to us that the Great I AM ‘causes us to be’ – He gives us our very existence; and so our breath, that is from Him, ought be rendering back to Him the praise due to His wonderful Name!

In this Psalm the call is very clear to the true servants of יהוה, and that is to PRAISE our Master and Mighty Elohim!!!

We have discussed this before, but in order to remind you, the Hebrew word for servant is עֶבֶד eḇeḏ – Strong’s H5650 meaning, ‘servant, slave, bondservant, and ‘eḇeḏ’ is used 800 times in the Tanak (O.T.) and is used as a noun and comes from the primitive root verb עָבַד aḇaḏ – Strong’s H5647 meaning, ‘to work, serve, observe, do the work, cultivate, worship’ and carries the understanding of ‘expending considerable energy and intensity in performing a task or function’ – in other words – ‘giving it your all’!

In the ancient script the word עֶבֶד eḇeḏ is pictured as:    daletbeitayin

 Ayin  - עֶ  - The original pictograph for this letter is ayin and represents the idea of seeing and watching, as well as knowledge as the eye is the window of knowledge

Beyt בֶ  -  The ancient script has this letter as beit, which pictures a tent floor plan and means, ‘house’ or ‘tent’. It represents family and the importance of those who are inside the tent as opposed to the tent structure itself.

Daletד - The ancient script has this letter as dalet and is pictured as a ‘tent door’. It can also have the meaning of a back and forth movement as one goes back and forth through a tent door and so speaks of an access point. It can also carry the meaning of ‘dangle’ or hanging as the tent door would hang from the roof pole of the tent. It speaks a great deal in terms of understanding the door of the tent of appointment as the only means of access.

When we look at this word in the ancient script for a servant, we can see that it speaks of “One who watches at the door of the house” – and this is what our Master calls us to do; and when we consider that יהושע Messiah is The Door, then we further see our need to continually be looking at Him, and praising Him as we diligently are serving in spirit and truth, guarding to do all His commands – and this is how we too keep watch over the House/Body of Messiah with true joy!

Verse 2 again reiterates to us the ones who are expected, and called upon, to praise יהוה, and to be boasting in Him as they shine the light of His truth in all circumstances. Here we see that the call is given to all who are standing in the House of יהוה. The phrase ‘who are standing’ is שֶׁעֹמְדִים – ‘she’omdiym’ and is constructed from two words: 1) -  שֶׁ· she – Strong’s H7945 which is a primary particle that means, who, which, that and also can mean, for whose cause, for my sake; and 2) - עָמַד amaḏ – Strong’s H5975 which carries the meaning, to take one’s stand, present oneself, abide, appoint, arise, stay, be steadfast, remain, be or become a servant’. When we see the construct of this word, we see that not only is it יהוה Himself who causes us to stand in His presence, but we also realise whose presence, or for whose sake we are standing in His House – it is for His Name’s sake – the One who causes us to be!

For whose sake are you standing to praise? For יהוה’s sake!!! I often wonder how often we can so easily forget why we assemble and gather to praise our Almighty Elohim.

Our praise of Him is as important as our hearing of His Word; and this means that we should not neglect to recognise for whose sake we are coming together to praise. I say this with great respect, and remind us all that we should not take lightly our collective time of praise and worship – because it is not for any others’ sake but יהוה’s alone!!! So if you show up late or come in and disturb praise by greeting others while praise of יהוה is happening, perhaps you have neglected to realise for whose sake we are gathering! Neglecting praise is neglecting יהוה!

Verse 3 makes it very clear – praise יהוה for He is ‘GOOD’ which is the Hebrew word טוֹב  toḇ – Strong’s H2896 and carries the meaning, pleasant, good, agreeable, beautiful, to be pleasing, done well. In the true understanding of this word   טוֹב  to, we can see that it may best be translated in most cases as ‘functional, for when יהוה  said in Berěshith/Genesis 1:31 that when He saw all that He had made, that He said it was very good. What He saw was His creation functioning properly and working the way it should and this is why it was ‘good’.

He has given us His Torah, and through Messiah He has given us the ability to stand and be dressed in His Armour – that is His Word, and serve as a faithful priesthood, offering Him the praises due to His Name!

We are able to confidently praise Him for He is GOOD.

Mattithyahu/Matthew 19:17 “And He said to him, “Why do you call Me good? No one is good except One – Elohim. But if you wish to enter into life, guard the commands.

Part of obeying the command of our One Good Elohim, is to be praising Him and His pleasant Name! The Hebrew word for pleasant  is נָעִים na’iym – Strong’s H5273 which means, pleasant, delightful, lovely, surpass in beauty. His Name is lovely and surpasses all beauty, and as Ya’aqoḇ tells us:

Ya’aqoḇ/James 1:17 “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no change, nor shadow of turning.

His Name is good and lovely and every good gift comes from Him – now why would anyone who knows this hesitate to praise Him!!! We sing praises to His pleasant Name; and the Hebrew word for ‘sing praises’ is זָמַר  zamar – Strong’s H2167 meaning, to make music (in praise of Elohim), sing praises’.

This word carries with it the idea of ‘striking with the fingers’, and more properly meaning ‘to touch the strings or parts of a musical instrument’. This praise goes further than just the voice, but carries the clear picture of making music or singing with the aid of instruments! In Tehillim/Psalms 149:3 we see ‘zamar’ being translated as ‘sing praises’ or in other translations as ‘make melody’, and that is with tambourine and harp. What a joy it is to have the gift of ‘zamar’ praise happening here in our midst as יהוה continues to inspire Marcia to produce such wonderful songs in praise unto our Elohim – together with the ‘striking of the fingers’!

We may not all be able to ‘strike with the fingers’ an instrument like Marcia, but we certainly can join as a family together in singing praises as she leads us with zamar singing, causing us to join together in making that joyful praise of song with instruments unto יהוה. And we can all certainly ‘clap our hands’ and make music to Elohim!

We are His chosen and His treasured possession! I love this language here, as we see that Ya’aqoḇ He has chosen, and Yisra’ĕl is His treasured possession! You see, while we were still sinners, He delivered us, chose us and called us to Himself, and we who have overcome with Him are His treasured possession!  The Hebrew word for ‘treasured possession’ is סְגֻלָּה  segullah – Strong’s H5459 meaning valued possession or property. This could also be expressed as My uniquely valued and guarded treasure above all the nations! How awesome is that!!! A hearing, guarding and doing people are the uniquely valued and guarded treasure of יהוה’s; that is to say that He holds us firmly in His hand and never takes His eyes off of us and guards us continually so as to never let us go, for we are extremely valued and precious to Him. When outsiders look at us they may see it as being locked away in a box, thinking that we ‘have to do’ things that are not required by them and claim erroneously that we have lost our rights and are ‘under law’ so to speak – but it is not so – we are kept secure and safe and are a prized possession.

Overcomers are His ‘segullah’!!!

Romiyim/Romans 8:37 “But in all this we are more than overcomers through Him who loved us.

Yoḥanan Aleph/1 John 5:3-4 “For this is the love for Elohim, that we guard His commands, and His commands are not heavy, 4 because everyone having been born of Elohim overcomes the world. And this is the overcoming that has overcome the world: our belief.

Our active belief – that is our – hearing, guarding and DOING of His commands, causes us to be overcomers, and therefore become His treasured possession, assured of everlasting life!!!

Ḥazon/Revelation 2:7 “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the assemblies. To him who overcomes I shall give to eat from the tree of life, which is in the midst of the Paradise of Elohim.

Overcomers in Messiah, “know” יהוה, and that He is good and is above all!!! He is Sovereign Most High, and He has done whatever pleased Him. This Psalm reminds us of His mighty works in all creation, as well as His Mighty outstretched Arm of deliverance, and how He rightly rules His people, showing great compassion to His true praising servants!

He has given us ears to hear and eyes to see, for Messiah has opened our eyes and ears to His Truth; for His sheep know His voice and they follow Him!

Those how do not obey His commands and reject the Torah, clearly do not know יהוה, and hear but do not understand and see but do not know – and therefore we continually see the prophecies of Yeshayahu being fulfilled by the clear evidence of so many who have hardened hearts and dimmed eyes. In fact this Psalm, which is also part of Tehillim/Psalm 115 makes it clear that the people who trust in anything other than יהוה, become like those things that they make and put their trust in! We, who put our trust in יהוה, who is Mighty, Good, Pleasant and shows us compassion, praise His lovely Name and become more and more like Him, as we walk in Him and stay in His Word that shapes us and makes us into vessels unto value in His House!

The call is clear – His Bride is called to praise Him. The House of Yisra’ĕl is His Bride, for they are overcomers in Him. The name of Aharon - אַהֲרוֹן  - Strong’s H175 means,light bringer’, and as high priest he is a clear shadow picture of יהושע Messiah, our High Priest and ‘light bringer’ – for He is the Light, and we walk in His light, having fellowship with one another, having been cleansed from all sin, which is lawlessness! This then explains why we also see the call for the House of Lĕwi  to bless יהוה; for Lĕwi – לֵוִי – Strong’s H3878 means, joined to; and so we who have been ‘joined to’ the Light Bringer – that is יהושע Messiah, and overcome is Messiah as a set-apart priesthood, are called to bless יהוה. You who fear יהוה bless His Name!!! (For more on the fear of יהוה, please see my message called, ‘Those fearing Elohim, listen!’, which can be found on our website under sermons 2012 menu – http://atfotc.com)

My very short encouraging message tonight is simply a call to praise YAH! I also encourage you to dig further into the great power of the poetic language found in the Psalms and be stirred to praise YAH in all things, aměn!

Perhaps it would be very fitting for us to end tonight with a song or two of praise unto YAH, our great and Mighty Elohim!

יהוה bless you and guard you; יהוה make His face shine upon you and show you favour; יהוה lift up His face to you and give you Shalom!