I Will Celebrate

“Let them praise (halal) His name in the dance…” Psalm 149:3

Halal is one Hebrew word for “praise,” and it means “to shine, to boast, to rave, to show, to celebrate, to glory, to dance, to be clamorously foolish.” It also means to be clear, to be brilliant, used of a clear sharp tone or sound. The word “hallelujah” comes from halal.

When I think about what to compare halal praise to, I think of a football fan raving for their team. I’ve seen some clamorously foolish fans that will celebrate their team’s win by jumping, shouting and dancing. They love their team, and they love to see victory for their team. The King James Version translates the word as “mad,” as in acting madly or like a madman. Thousands of men and women act like fools in the excitement of points in a football game, so it isn’t surprising that people would react with excitement when they recognize God for who He is.

King David was known for praising God. In I Chronicles 23:5 David appointed 4,000 to praise the Lord with instruments. David said they were for “giving praise” and the word for praise that he used was halal. Imagine a 4,000 piece band leading the nation to celebrate God without reservation. In II Chronicles 7:6 David used the word halal again when referring to leading the nation in worship for this purpose, “His mercy endures forever.” We also see halal in the following scriptures:

Psalm 106:5 “That I may see the benefit of Your chosen ones, that I may rejoice in the gladness of Your nation, that I may glory (halal) with Your inheritance.”

Jeremiah 9:24 “Let him who glories glory (halal) in this, that he understands and knows Me, that I am the Lord, exercising lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness in the earth. For in these I delight, says the Lord.”

When we realize the victory that we have in Christ, we want to celebrate God and celebrate His kingdom. When we realize how much was at stake for our salvation, how high the price was for freedom and how great a victory our redemption is, we celebrate it. We may jump. We may shout. We may dance. We may act clamorously foolish. We do so because we realize how great our God is and want to celebrate Him.

Application: Go ahead and be passionate about God. Celebrate who He is and what He does. He is worthy of our halal praise. Hallelujah!

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