Monday 25th March
Popularised by Alexander Burke’s rendition, in her triumphant X-Factor victory in 2008, the song “Hallelujah” originally written by Leonard Cohen, became the fastest selling single of all time. When I first heard the chorus on the radio I thought I was listening to a worship song. I soon realised it wasn’t (although it does contain some Biblical references). However the interesting thing is, whether Christian or not, when people sing along to the lyrics in the chorus they are both praising God and singing the one word that is the same in every nation in the world.
Hallelujah derives it meaning from 2 compound Hebrews words. The first being Hallel which mean praise and the second Jah, which is taken from the Hebrew word for God, Yahweh. Put together we have the word Hallelujah, which is commonly translated as praise the Lord. What I find interesting is that in whatever country I have visited, the word Hallelujah is the same in their native tongue. Ok, it might have a slight tonal variation here and there but the word is still the same. In fact the more I think about it, the more I wonder, why is that word is never translated into different languages. I mean take the word God for example. If you said God in a non-English context, generally people wouldn’t understand you. Or how about the word salvation, would non-English speakers understand that in South-East Asia?? Why is it that every nation on the earth understands Hallelujah?
I believe that the reason for this, is that God desires all men to praise Him. Sadly as with the song Hallelujah, most people use this word in a derogatory way, either in a sarcastic comment when something finally happens or in passing blasphemous comments. The wonderful thing though, is that not matter how their heart condition is, they are in fact praising God. Maybe a starting point for an evangelistic conversation for a friend??
John, in his letter to the churches, writes down the vision he is shown by God of the end times and the future God has for all mankind, both in glory and judgement. In the 19th chapter of the book of Revelation, we read of a picture whereby John describes the vision he was given of Heaven and all the saints worshipping in glory. Every tribe, nation and tongue are all united in their common praise, in one thunderous voice, as the sound of mighty waves or the crashing of loud thunder, exclaiming “Hallelujah” to the Lord of Lords and King of Kings. What a wonderful image. Yet the truth is that this picture is already happening across churches worldwide…. In churches you really do find every tribe and nation, joining together in the united praise to and of God, Hallelujah. Join with the saints and the angels today. Shout out His praise. Hallelujah, Hallelujah to the Lord God Almighty. Remember you are not only singing or shouting His praise as an individual; you are joining with others around the world and with the angels in the Heavens, proclaiming the praise of our Lord Almighty.