‘I will praise [yadah] You, O LORD, with my whole heart.’ (Psalm 9:1 NKJV)
You’ve probably heard of the phrase ‘yada, yada, yada’. It means ‘so on and so forth’, and colloquially it’s like saying ‘blah, blah, blah!’ The phrase is often used when something spoken or written is predictable, repetitive or tedious.
I hope that’s not the case when we come to worship God as a community of believers, for our worship should never be predictable, repetitive or tedious. In other words it shouldn’t be ‘yada, yada, yada’.
Interestingly, according Strong’s Hebrew dictionary, the Hebrew Yadah has the meaning to,
‘cast out, make confession, praise, shoot, give thanks.’ It derives from the word Yad; literally, to use (i.e. hold out) the hand; physically, to throw (a stone, an arrow) at or away; especially to revere or worship (with extended hands); intensively, to bemoan (by wringing the hands), make confession, praise, give thanksgiving.
Yadah then means to willfully throw your hands up to praise, make confession, and give thanks, all of which are important components of worship.
The throwing up of our hands
‘In every place of worship, I want men to pray with holy hands lifted up to God, free from anger and controversy’. (1 Timothy 2:8 NLT)
‘Through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise—the fruit of lips that confess his name’. (Hebrews 13:15 NIV)
‘Then I acknowledged my sin to you and did not cover up my iniquity. I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the LORD “—and you forgave the guilt of my sin’. (Psalm 32:5)
‘Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever…Let them give thanks to the Lord for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for mankind, for he satisfies the thirsty and fills the hungry with good things.’ (Psalm 107:1, 8-9 NIV)
All of these elements are brought together beautifully in Psalm 28.
‘To you I call, O LORD my Rock…Hear my cry for mercy as I call to you for help, [confession] as I lift up my hands toward your Most Holy Place [throwing up our hands]…Praise be to the LORD, for he has heard my cry for mercy. [praise] The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and I am helped. My heart leaps for joy and I will give thanks to him in song. [thanksgiving] The LORD is the strength of his people, a fortress of salvation…Save your people and bless your inheritance; be their shepherd and carry them forever’. (V.1, 2, 6-7, 8, 9 NIV)
How’s the worship of your congregation? How is your own personal worship?
If it’s ‘yada, yada, yada,’ let’s ask God to make it ‘yadah, yadah, yadah’.
Father, thank you for the opportunity of worship, may the words of our mouths and the meditation of our hearts be pleasing in your sight,
Have a good week worshipping God.