Give praise to the name of Adonai! Blessed be the name of Adonai from this moment on and forever. From sunrise until sunset Adonai’s name be praised forever.
Tremble, earth, at the presence of the Lord, at the presence of the God of Jacob, who turned the rock into a pool of water, flint into a flowing spring.
Israel, trust in Adonai! He is their help and shield.
You who fear Adonai, trust in Adonai! He is their help and their shield.
I love that Adonai heard my voice when I prayed; because He turned His ear to me, I will call on Him as long as I live.
Praise Adonai, all you nations! Worship Him all you peoples! For His grace has overcome us, and Adonai’s truth continues forever.
From my being hemmed in I called on Yah; He answered and gave me more room. With Adonai on my side, I fear nothing. What can man do to me? With Adonai on my side as my help I will look with triumph at those who hate me.
These expressions are part of the Hallel, a portion of Jewish feasts and festivals where Psalms 113-118 are sung.
Jesus was deeply troubled when He came into the upper room to have the Pesach meal with His disciples. During their feast and fellowship, He washed the feet of them, silenced an argument between them over which one was best, and said one would betray Him.
Mark and Matthew both tell that as supper ended, song began. Silence found sound as they became of one accord. They touched one chord. Humanity strummed Heaven with the Hallel. From the unashamed and unafraid came moments breathy with adoration and pregnant with praise.
In those moments held by harmony, Jesus drew His disciples into doxology. He taught them how to occupy a hallelujah. They remembered the song they used to know and that glory spilled like water from rock when they tenanted worship together.
Jesus, steps away from His gravest trial, the trial of the grave, would not move towards it until they were moved towards God. Godward, the compass point for Gethsemane.
When they had sung, they went to the Mount of Olives. Jesus in the wait for Judas, told His beloved the unbelievable:
“You will all fall away because of me this night.”
Far from the Hallel, hallowed and holy. These near ones, fell fast, quicksand hearts, sinking as He bowed bleeding. The moved now motionless, praise paralyzed. Eyes heavy, hope hostage.
“Wake up!” I want to shout from here to there. But I must sound alarm for my own awe to stay awakened, so I might adore always. In all ways. For, I too, fall away fast. Back to that which I left behind to be with Him, when my whole heart longs to follow and ever find Him, first.
So, in these days, I sing. I hold the Hallel upon breath unbroken. No going back to the worry of was. Moved and motioned for His “to come”. To occupy means to drive out previous tenants and posses in their place. I hold the ground of my hallelujah when I conquer my own squatting in places I don’t belong and wasn’t delivered to. It is then and there, hallelujah becomes home.
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