Tehillim / Psalms 113, ספר תהילים קיג, Part 2, The Lord Raises Us up to be Leaders

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In this week’s study from Tehillim / Psalms 113:1-9, the Psalm opens saying, א הַלְלוּיָהּ | הַלְלוּ עַבְדֵי יְהֹוָה הַלְלוּ אֶת-שֵׁם יְהֹוָה: 113:1 Praise the Lord! Praise, O servants of the Lord, Praise the name of the Lord. (NASB) How many reasons can you think of to praise the Lord as the Psalm opens calling us to do? How many ways can you think of that would give praise to the Lord God our Father in heaven? The psalmist continues saying, ב יְהִי שֵׁם יְהֹוָה מְבֹרָךְ מֵעַתָּה וְעַד-עוֹלָם: ג מִמִּזְרַח-שֶׁמֶשׁ עַד-מְבוֹאוֹ מְהֻלָּל שֵׁם יְהֹוָה: 113:2 Blessed be the name of the Lord From this time forth and forever. 113:3 From the rising of the sun to its setting The name of the Lord is to be praised. (NASB) The psalmist says that the name of the Lord is blessed for all time. What does it mean that “the name of the Lord is blessed?” The statement “from the rising of the sun to its setting” is a reference to the nature of our lives, from when we get up until we lay down, we seek to praise His name. This is paralleled to the way in which we are to live our lives according to His word. The psalm states, ד רָם עַל-כָּל-גּוֹיִם | יְהֹוָה עַל הַשָּׁמַיִם כְּבוֹדוֹ: ה מִי כַּיהֹוָה אֱלֹהֵינוּ הַמַּגְבִּיהִי לָשָׁבֶת: 113:4 The Lord is high above all nations; His glory is above the heavens. 113:5 Who is like the Lord our God, Who is enthroned on high, (NASB) Israel is said to be set apart as separate according to Parashat Balak in the prophecy of Bilam. The Lord states something about Israel that distinguishes His people from the nations. In a similar way, the Psalmist states that the Lord is high above all the nations, meaning that His glory is above even the heavens. This is a description of His being unapproachable, His might, and His ultimate power over all of creation. The psalm says, ו הַמַּשְׁפִּילִי לִרְאוֹת בַּשָּׁמַיִם וּבָאָרֶץ: 113:6 Who humbles Himself to behold The things that are in heaven and in the earth? (NASB) The idea is that the Lord is above the heavens and the earth, and yet He humbles himself to seek out men on this earth, those who would seek Him and seeking to live in righteousness, justice, holiness, and truth. The Psalm concludes saying, ז מְקִימִי מֵעָפָר דָּל מֵאַשְׁפֹּת יָרִים אֶבְיוֹן: ח לְהוֹשִׁיבִי עִם-נְדִיבִים עִם נְדִיבֵי עַמּוֹ: ט מוֹשִׁיבִי | עֲקֶרֶת הַבַּיִת אֵם-הַבָּנִים שְֹמֵחָה הַלְלוּיָהּ: 113:7 He raises the poor from the dust And lifts the needy from the ash heap, 113:8 To make them sit with princes, With the princes of His people. 113:9 He makes the barren woman abide in the house As a joyful mother of children. Praise the Lord! (NASB) The Lord is able to do what seems impossible. The psalmist uses the example of the poor the Lord raises up to sit as equals to princes in both wealth and in posterity. It is true how the Lord is able to heal the hearts of even the most desperate of things, such as the woman who is unable to bear children. The Lord works in the heart to bring joy even in the midst of sorrow.

עברית Hebrew ארמי Aramaic ελληνικός Greek

ספר תהלים פרק קיג

א הַלְלוּיָהּ | הַלְלוּ עַבְדֵי יְהֹוָה הַלְלוּ אֶת-שֵׁם יְהֹוָה: ב יְהִי שֵׁם יְהֹוָה מְבֹרָךְ מֵעַתָּה וְעַד-עוֹלָם: ג מִמִּזְרַח-שֶׁמֶשׁ עַד-מְבוֹאוֹ מְהֻלָּל שֵׁם יְהֹוָה: ד רָם עַל-כָּל-גּוֹיִם | יְהֹוָה עַל הַשָּׁמַיִם כְּבוֹדוֹ:

סםר טוביה פרק קיג

א הללויה שבחו אלהא שבחו עבדיא דיהוה שבחו ית שמא דיהוה׃ ב יהוי שמא דיהוה מברך מהשתא ועד עלמא׃ ג ממדנח שמשא עד מטמעיה משבח שמא דיהוה׃ ד רמא על כל עמיא עממיא יהוה עלוי שמיא איקריה׃

ΨΑΛΜΟΙ 113

113:1 αλληλουια αἰνεῖτε παῖδες κύριον αἰνεῖτε τὸ ὄνομα κυρίου 113:2 εἴη τὸ ὄνομα κυρίου εὐλογημένον ἀπὸ τοῦ νῦν καὶ ἕως τοῦ αἰῶνος 113:3 ἀπὸ ἀνατολῶν ἡλίου μέχρι δυσμῶν αἰνεῖτε τὸ ὄνομα κυρίου 113:4 ὑψηλὸς ἐπὶ πάντα τὰ ἔθνη ὁ κύριος ἐπὶ τοὺς οὐρανοὺς ἡ δόξα αὐτοῦ

ה מִי כַּיהֹוָה אֱלֹהֵינוּ הַמַּגְבִּיהִי לָשָׁבֶת: ו הַמַּשְׁפִּילִי לִרְאוֹת בַּשָּׁמַיִם וּבָאָרֶץ: ז מְקִימִי מֵעָפָר דָּל מֵאַשְׁפֹּת יָרִים אֶבְיוֹן: ח לְהוֹשִׁיבִי עִם-נְדִיבִים עִם נְדִיבֵי עַמּוֹ: ט מוֹשִׁיבִי | עֲקֶרֶת הַבַּיִת אֵם-הַבָּנִים שְֹמֵחָה הַלְלוּיָהּ:

ה מן כוותיה דכמת דיהוה אלהנא דגביה מותביה למתב׃ ו דממיך דמכיך עייניה למחמי בשמיא ובארעא׃ ז מקים מעפרא מסכינא מקיקלתא ומקלקלתא ירים חשוכא׃ ח לאותבא לאותובי עם רברביא עם רברבי עמיה׃ ט מיתיב כנישתא דישראל דמתילא לעקרא דיתבא מוריקא מודיקא לאינשי ביתה ״היך כרכושתא דמדורא בעיקרי ביתא ומודקא מזון מבני נשא ותהדור ירושלם מליא אוכלוסין סגיעין היך אימא די על בניא חדיא הללויה שבחו אלהא׃

113:5 τίς ὡς κύριος ὁ θεὸς ἡμῶν ὁ ἐν ὑψηλοῖς κατοικῶν 113:6 καὶ τὰ ταπεινὰ ἐφορῶν ἐν τῷ οὐρανῷ καὶ ἐν τῇ γῇ 113:7 ὁ ἐγείρων ἀπὸ γῆς πτωχὸν καὶ ἀπὸ κοπρίας ἀνυψῶν πένητα 113:8 τοῦ καθίσαι αὐτὸν μετὰ ἀρχόντων μετὰ ἀρχόντων λαοῦ αὐτοῦ 113:9 ὁ κατοικίζων στεῖραν ἐν οἴκῳ μητέρα τέκνων εὐφραινομένην

Tehillim Psalms 113

113:1 Praise the Lord! Praise, O servants of the Lord, Praise the name of the Lord. 113:2 Blessed be the name of the Lord From this time forth and forever. 113:3 From the rising of the sun to its setting The name of the Lord is to be praised. 113:4 The Lord is high above all nations; His glory is above the heavens. 113:5 Who is like the Lord our God, Who is enthroned on high, 113:6 Who humbles Himself to behold The things that are in heaven and in the earth? 113:7 He raises the poor from the dust And lifts the needy from the ash heap, 113:8 To make them sit with princes, With the princes of His people. 113:9 He makes the barren woman abide in the house As a joyful mother of children. Praise the Lord! (NASB)

Toviyah Psalms 113

113:1 Hallelujah! Give praise, O servants of the Lord, praise the name of the Lord. 113:2 May the name of the Lord be blessed, from now and forever. 113:3 From the rising of the sun to its setting, the name of the Lord is praised. 113:4 The Lord is high above all Gentiles, his glory is over the heavens. 113:5 Who is like the Lord, our God, whose dwelling is lofty in situation? 113:6 Who lowers his eyes to look on the heavens and the earth. 113:7 Who raises up the poor man from the dust; he will lift up the needy from the ash-heap. 113:8 To make him dwell with the leaders, with the leaders of his people. 113:9 Who makes dwell the congregation of Israel, who is likened to a barren woman who sits beholding the men of her house, full of people, like a mother who rejoices over her sons. (EMC)

Psalmoi Psalms 113

Alleluia. 113:1 Praise the Lord, ye servants of his, praise, the name of the Lord. 113:2 Let the name of the Lord be blessed, from this present time and for ever. 113:3 From the rising of the sun to his setting, the name of the Lord is to be praised. 113:4 The Lord is high above all the nations; his glory is above the heavens. 113:5 Who is as the Lord our God? who dwells in the high places, 113:6 and yet looks upon the low things in heaven, and on the earth: 113:7 who lifts up the poor from the earth, and raises up the needy from the dunghill; 113:8 to set him with princes, even with the princes of his people: 113:9 who settles the barren woman in a house, as a mother rejoicing over children. (LXX)

In this week’s study from Tehillim / Psalms 113:1-9, the Psalm opens saying, א הַלְלוּיָהּ | הַלְלוּ עַבְדֵי יְהֹוָה הַלְלוּ אֶת-שֵׁם יְהֹוָה: 113:1 Praise the Lord! Praise, O servants of the Lord, Praise the name of the Lord. (NASB) How many reasons can you think of to praise the Lord as the Psalm opens calling us to do? How many ways can you think of that we may do that would give praise to the Lord God our Father in heaven? King David gave praises to the Lord in the following way according to 1 Chronicles 29:10-20.

1 Chronicles 29:10-20

29:10 So David blessed the Lord in the sight of all the assembly; and David said, ‘Blessed are You, O Lord God of Israel our father, forever and ever. 29:11 ‘Yours, O Lord, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the victory and the majesty, indeed everything that is in the heavens and the earth; Yours is the dominion, O Lord, and You exalt Yourself as head over all. 29:12 ‘Both riches and honor come from You, and You rule over all, and in Your hand is power and might; and it lies in Your hand to make great and to strengthen everyone. 29:13 ‘Now therefore, our God, we thank You, and praise Your glorious name. 29:14 ‘But who am I and who are my people that we should be able to offer as generously as this? For all things come from You, and from Your hand we have given You. 29:15 ‘For we are sojourners before You, and tenants, as all our fathers were; our days on the earth are like a shadow, and there is no hope. 29:16 ‘O Lord our God, all this abundance that we have provided to build You a house for Your holy name, it is from Your hand, and all is Yours. 29:17 ‘Since I know, O my God, that You try the heart and delight in uprightness, I, in the integrity of my heart, have willingly offered all these things; so now with joy I have seen Your people, who are present here, make their offerings willingly to You. 29:18 ‘O Lord, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Israel, our fathers, preserve this forever in the intentions of the heart of Your people, and direct their heart to You; 29:19 ‘and give to my son Solomon a perfect heart to keep Your commandments, Your testimonies and Your statutes, and to do them all, and to build the temple, for which I have made provision.’ 29:20 Then David said to all the assembly, ‘Now bless the Lord your God.’ And all the assembly blessed the Lord, the God of their fathers, and bowed low and did homage to the Lord and to the king. (NASB)

We read that 29:10 So David blessed the Lord in the sight of all the assembly; and David said, ‘Blessed are You, O Lord God of Israel our father, forever and ever. ( וַיְבָרֶךְ דָּוִיד אֶת-יְהֹוָה לְעֵינֵי כָּל-הַקָּהָל וַיֹּאמֶר דָּוִיד בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יְהֹוָה אֱלֹהֵי יִשְֹרָאֵל אָבִינוּ מֵעוֹלָם וְעַד-עוֹלָם:) David praised the Lord by speaking to everyone about his faith through the blessing of God’s name and the majesty, victory, and power of God to deliver His people. David recognizes it is the Lord who has brought the wealth to himself and to the people. He says that the Lord discerns our hearts and delights in uprightness and integrity. In these things, he blesses the name of the Lord. This was done by speaking well of the Lord God; David is expressing adoration and respect to the Lord. Note that this is more than just a speech or something said repeatedly or ritualistically. David was not only impressed by the character of God, so influenced by His marvelous attributes, He was compelled by the sheer power and majesty of the Lord to bless Him, and to praise His name. His Word reached his heart and had the intended influence that lead to action, his having lived out his faith. In fact, David asks that the Lord would preserve this attitude, intention, and integrity in His people forever and for all generations. Based upon the Scriptures, David blessed the Lord in the following way:

  1. Praise the Lord God of Israel in song.
  2. Praise the Lord God of Israel in prayer.
  3. Praise the Lord God of Israel in obedience.
  4. Praise the Lord God of Israel through the influence of a faithful life.

The Apostle Paul wrote to the Romans in Romans 15:11 “And again, “Praise the Lord, all you Gentiles, and sing praises to him, all you peoples.” (NIV) When we sing to the Lord, we express our praise to the Lord at a fundamental level, from our hearts. The heart is what characterizes who we are in its raw form because the heart is what the Lord sees, our intentions, and the truest nature of our faith (intention and integrity). We are told by our teacher Yeshua, that we are to express our adoration of the Lord by the phrase “Hallowed be Your Name” (Matthew 6:9). This is coming before the Lord in prayer and recognizing the sacredness of doing so and the sacredness of the name of God because of who He is. Studying the Scriptures where men and women prayed, we find the great expression of reverence and honor to the God of Israel. When we go before the Lord in prayer, we should take this approach as well to recognize the Lord for who He is, to humble ourselves before Him, and to revere and honor Him in the greatest way that we can.

When we study God’s Word and read something like what Paul wrote in Romans 3:23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, (NASB) Paul basically says “for in disobedience, we fail to glorify Him.” This illustrates the task and the struggle that we have ahead of us as we live our lives for the Lord. The Torah calls us to obedience and our faith in Yeshua also calls us to live an obedient life. It is our willful attempts by faith to act upon God’s Word, to apply the Word to our lives that the Lord our Father in heaven is looking for. We are not really praising the Lord God in heaven until we decide to follow all of His instructions. Yeshua said, “But why do you call Me ‘Lord, Lord’ and do not do the things which I say?” (Luke 6:46). This is why Yeshua taught in Matthew 5:16 “In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.” (NIV) When we follow the instructions of the Lord God according to His Words, and honor the Son in our lives, the Lord puts within us the kind of influential spirit that will work in others lives for good and not for evil. It is through godly behavior that we become a light unto the world and lead others into the faith. The Psalm opens saying, א הַלְלוּיָהּ | הַלְלוּ עַבְדֵי יְהֹוָה הַלְלוּ אֶת-שֵׁם יְהֹוָה: 113:1 Praise the Lord! Praise, O servants of the Lord, Praise the name of the Lord. (NASB) David begins his psalm with a powerful statement to praise the Name of the Lord. The Lord God of Israel deserves to be praised and He is worthy to receive our praise just as the Scriptures state.

  • “For great is the LORD and most worthy of praise; he is to be feared above all gods” (Tehillim / Psalm 96:4).
  • “Great is the LORD and most worthy of praise; his greatness no one can fathom” (Tehillim / Psalm 145:3).
  • “I call to the LORD, who is worthy of praise, and I am saved from my enemies” (2 Samuel 22:4).
  • “You are worthy, our LORD and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things, and by your will they were created and have their being” (Revelation 4:11).

By praising the Lord, we are reminded of the greatness of God and of His power and presence in our lives. Our praises reinforce this understanding, “Praise the Lord, for the Lord is good; sing praise to his name, for that is pleasant” (Tehillim / Psalm 135:3).

The rabbis say the following according to the Talmud Bavli Sukkah 38b.

Talmud Bavli Sukkah 38b:1

Many significant halakhot can be learned from the custom of hallel based on the manner in which it was recited. In reciting hallel there are allusions to several halakhic matters and customs that the Sages instituted due to circumstances extant at the time. Although due to increased literacy and familiarity with the hallel liturgy the reasons no longer apply, these customs remain in practice. The prayer leader recites: “Halleluya” (Psalms 113:1), and the congregation recites: Halleluya, in response. From here is the source that there is a mitzva to respond: Halleluya.

The idea here is that the hallel is a mitzvah. The rabbinic understanding is “Praise the Lord, for the Lord is good; sing praise to his name, for that is pleasant” (Tehillim / Psalm 135:3), this is a mitzvah (a commandment). The reason being is due to the connection to our lives being lived for God’s glory. We are called to honor and respect the name of God in the way that we live our lives. The Talmud speaks of the leader reciting the halleluyah and then the people responding in like manner saying halleluyah. This parallels the Messiah who lived his life to honor God, and in similar manner, as the disciples of Yeshua, we also honor God according to His Word.

Talmud Bavli Sukkah 38b:2

Likewise, the prayer leader recites: “Give praise, servants of the Lord” (Psalms 113:1), and the congregation recites: Halleluya, in response. From here is the source of the halakha cited in the mishna that if an adult male was reciting hallel on his behalf, he answers: Halleluya. He recites: “Thank the Lord, for He is good” (Psalms 118:1), and they respond: “Thank the Lord, for He is good.” From here is the source that there is a mitzva to respond by reciting the beginnings of chapters. It was also stated that Rav Hanan bar Rava said: There is a mitzva to respond by reciting the beginnings of chapters.

The word “hallel” means “praises,” and the rabbis say that much may be learned from the custom of the hallel. The idea is that there is a blessing in just reciting the hallel, and in the congregation saying Halleluya together in response to the liturgy. Why do you think this is so? It may be because of the things we have been discussing. We are reminded of the promises of God and our minds are taken to how often the Lord has had mercy upon us and provided us with the “good thing” when we have done nothing but lived in disobedience. The hallel increases our faith because we verbally acknowledge the power of God and His glory within the embodiment of our praises. Note the significance of this when we couple this to the way that we live our lives. This is why the liturgy is designed in the way that it is, where “the prayer leader recites: “Give praise, servants of the Lord” (Psalms 113:1), and the congregation recites: Halleluya, in response.” Where the people “follow the leader” and Yeshua the Messiah is our leader.

The psalmist continues saying, ב יְהִי שֵׁם יְהֹוָה מְבֹרָךְ מֵעַתָּה וְעַד-עוֹלָם: ג מִמִּזְרַח-שֶׁמֶשׁ עַד-מְבוֹאוֹ מְהֻלָּל שֵׁם יְהֹוָה: 113:2 Blessed be the name of the Lord From this time forth and forever. 113:3 From the rising of the sun to its setting The name of the Lord is to be praised. (NASB) The psalmist says that the name of the Lord is blessed for all time. What does it mean that “the name of the Lord is blessed?” When we consider the commandments in the Torah, the taking on of the command is synonymous to carrying the name of the Lord with us. Through the commandments we are to bless and give glory to Him throughout the week, and every day of our lives. Our goal in life, our created purpose, is to give God glory each and every day, and to bless His name as we work our way through life and on to eternal life. The phrase, “Blessed be the name of the Lord From this time forth and forever,” is a yardstick by which to measure and hold ourselves accountable. As we go through our daily activities and make our daily decisions, we should continually ask ourselves, “Is the name of the Lord blessed in the activity I am doing?” This is similar to Tehillim / Psalm 118:26 כו בָּרוּךְ הַבָּא בְּשֵׁם יְהֹוָה בֵּרַכְנוּכֶם מִבֵּית יְהֹוָה: 118:26 Blessed be he that comes in the name of the LORD: we have blessed you out of the house of the LORD. (NASB) In the First Century period, these words may have carried with it a Messianic interpretation where the one that comes in the name of the Lord was a title of the Messiah (Matthew 11:3, Mark 11:10). What this illustrates for us is in the following verse in the statement “from the rising of the sun to its setting” being a reference to the nature of our lives, from when we get up until we lay down, we seek to praise His name. This is paralleled to the way in which we are to live our lives according to His word, according to the commandments. The Talmud Bavli Megillah 17a states the following:

Talmud Bavli Megillah 17a:16

Rav Avya said: It is derived from the verse in hallel: “Blessed be the name of the Lord” (Psalms 113:2), indicating that the blessing of God must be just as it is written. Rav Nahman bar Yitzhak said, and some say that it was Rav Aha bar Yaakov who said: It is derived from here, the end of the aforementioned verse: “From now and for evermore” (Psalms 113:2), i.e., it should be like time, which cannot be reversed.

The rabbis say that “blessed be the Name of the Lord” is exactly as it is written. This is interpreted as something that is forever and cannot be reversed. The promises of God are immutable, they do not change, however, the way we live our lives may impact the level of blessing the Lord brings into our lives.

The psalm states, ד רָם עַל-כָּל-גּוֹיִם | יְהֹוָה עַל הַשָּׁמַיִם כְּבוֹדוֹ: ה מִי כַּיהֹוָה אֱלֹהֵינוּ הַמַּגְבִּיהִי לָשָׁבֶת: 113:4 The Lord is high above all nations; His glory is above the heavens. 113:5 Who is like the Lord our God, Who is enthroned on high, (NASB) Israel is said to be set apart as separate according to Parashat Balak in the prophecy of Bilam. The Lord states something about Israel that distinguishes His people from the nations. In a similar way, the Psalmist states that the Lord is high above all the nations, meaning that He is different, and that His glory is above even the heavens. This is a description of His being unapproachable, His might, and His ultimate power over all of creation. This description reminds us of the Torah’s description of the Lord God according to Bamidbar / Numbers 23:19, יט לֹא אִישׁ אֵל וִיכַזֵּב וּבֶן-אָדָם וְיִתְנֶחָם הַהוּא אָמַר וְלֹא יַעֲשֶֹה וְדִבֶּר וְלֹא יְקִימֶנָּה: 23:19 ‘God is not a man, that He should lie, Nor a son of man, that He should repent; Has He said, and will He not do it? Or has He spoken, and will He not make it good? (NASB) The rabbis have the following to say concerning the Lord being high above the earth and not being as a man.

Akeidat Yitzchak 21:40

2) The vagueness in describing the site of the sacrifice, as well as the distance to be traversed till arriving at that site, were all meant to give Abraham a chance to reflect on what he was about to do. Speedy decisions are liable to produce second thoughts; a resolve of this nature which has had three days to mature, however, is not likely to be revoked at the last moment. The problem that G’d appears to have reversed His original intention, and that this is not compatible with His own statement “G’d is not like man in that he deceives, when He says something, will He not carry it out?”, (Numbers 23:19) can be resolved The letter lamed in Hebrew has several functions. It can mean tachat, instead of, such as in Genesis 11:3 when the invention of kiln dried bricks is described. There it means “the bricks served them instead of stones.”

Akeidat Yitzchak states that when one makes a rash and quick decision, these decisions are liable to produce “second thoughts,” in the sense that man tends to rehash and rethink what he had decided to do and may change his mind depending upon the situation. The Lord God on the other hand does no such thing. When the Torah speaks of the Lord repenting, it means that He turns from. The commentary states, “G’d is not like man in that he deceives, when He says something, will He not carry it out?” This delineates the fact that our actions play an important role in our relationship with the Lord. If we are living sinfully, the Lord will turn from the promise as is related to us. The promise is not done away with; the promise remains but we are not able to lay hold of it due to our sins. Here is where the mercy of God comes into effect as it pertains to our being consistent to live repentant lives. If we sin in unrepentance, there is no hope of receiving the promises which the Lord has stated. So the Lord does not promise and then deceive as the commentary states. The deception is in our own lives by acting out in disobedience to God’s commands.

Rashi on Bamidbar / Numbers 23:19

Part 1

לא איש וגו׳ [GOD IS] NOT A MAN [THAT HE SHOULD LIE] — He has already sworn to them that He will bring them thither and give them as a possession the land of the seven peoples, and you think to slay them in the wilderness?! (cf. Midrash Tanchuma 1:4:13)

Part 2

ההוא אמר וגו׳ — Read this in the form of a question: HATH HE SAID, [AND SHALL HE NOT DO IT]? — The rendering of ויתנחם in the Targum, ותיבין ומחמלכין, means, “[and not as the doings of mortals who decide to do things] and again reconsider” — to withdraw from them.

Rashi states based upon the Scriptures that God does not lie, He will bring them into their inheritance and will give them the land of the seven peoples (the Land of Canaan). The Lord promised to bring the people into the Land, note how that generation that sinned, they all died in the wilderness. It was their children that were brought into their inheritance. Their parents were so rebellious and obstinate against God’s Word that they were left to die in the wilderness, to die in their sins, and their children were given what they were unwilling to receive. Note how God’s Word has the tendency to reveal the intentions of the heart (Hebrews 4). When we consider a mitzvah (command) and reject it on the basis that it is old, or passed away, which is the end result of the modern theologies, this type of theological basis enables one to disregard what the Lord wants for our lives. This is why the Torah reveals something about our heart and who we are at a very deep spiritual level. The point is that we should have a deep desire to serve and live for the Lord in the way that He wants us to. Paul wrote in Romans 7 about the difficulty and the war that is waging within the body between the spirit and the body.

The commentary Shney Luchot Habrit states the following:

Shney Luchot HaBrit, Bereshit, Torah Ohr 54

Another difficulty is whether what the sages describe means that G’d had re-considered? Surely this cannot be; do we not have it on good authority that one of the things that distinguishes G’d from man is כי לא בן אדם ויתנחם, “For He is not human that He should reconsider or regret!” (Numbers 23:19)

The Lord does not re-consider His own ways or the promises that He has made. Man on the other hand reconsiders everything, including whether he should obey the Lord or choose to sin at any given time. Our struggle with sin is one of the tell tale signs that we are the children of God. Have you ever thanked the Lord God our Father in heaven for sending His Holy Spirit into your life for the conviction of sin? What about thanking the Lord for His help in leading you in the paths of righteousness and truth?

The psalm states, ו הַמַּשְׁפִּילִי לִרְאוֹת בַּשָּׁמַיִם וּבָאָרֶץ: 113:6 Who humbles Himself to behold The things that are in heaven and in the earth? (NASB) The idea is that man is to humble himself to seek out the Lord who is in heaven, and to seek the Lord while here on earth. The Lord is above the heavens and the earth, and yet He humbles himself to seek out men on this earth, those who would seek Him and desire to draw near by living in righteousness, justice, holiness, and truth. The Aramaic Targum states, ו דממיך דמכיך עייניה למחמי בשמיא ובארעא׃ 113:6 Who lowers his eyes to look on the heavens and the earth. (EMC) in agreement with the interpretation that the Lord humbles Himself to look down upon the heavens and the earth. The idea is that He is above the heavens and the earth. This interpretation is taken from Tehillim / Psalms 14:2 The LORD looks down from heaven on the children of man, to see if there are any who understand, who seek after God. (NASB) The Lord God of Israel seeks those who would seek him. This is what it means to be a true worshiper, to seek and to walk according to God’s ways. The Lord created us for communion. We were made to relate to him, having been created in his image in order to walk with the Lord who is Spirit, we were designed so that we may walk in this physical world which demonstrates our faith by walking in the spirit. The Scriptures state that no one naturally seeks God, therefore it is the Lord who seeks us. Remember how the Lord sought Adam and Eve as they hid in the Garden (Bereshit / Genesis 3:9). Yeshua the Messiah gave this as His mission statement saying, “The Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost” (Luke 19:10). In Romans 7:18, Paul says, “For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out.” In and of ourselves, we cannot seek after the Lord and therefore it is imperative that we ask for His help to have faith and to continue in our living for Him on a daily basis. Yeshua said, “No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws them” (John 6:44). In other words, the only way we can seek our Father in heaven is if our hearts have first been stirred by God’s Spirit with a desire to draw near and to seek Him. Based upon these verses, it is the Lord who draws us to Himself. Ephesians 2:8 underscores this truth saying, כי בחסד נושעתם על ידי האמונה ולא מידכם היתה זאת כי מתת אלהים היא׃ “By grace/mercy/chesed are you saved, through faith, and that not of yourselves. It is the gift of God.” Therefore, the faith to believe for salvation does not originate within ourselves, but it is a gift of God where the Lord God enables our hearts to seek Him, when in our own self-centered state we would never do so. The Apostle James said that every good thing originates with God (James 1:17). The prophet Jeremiah states in Jeremiah 29:13 that God says, “You will seek me and you will find me, when you seek me with all your heart.” This is similar to what Moshe wrote in the Torah in Devarim / Deuteronomy 4:29 But from there you will seek the LORD your God, and you will find Him if you search for Him with all your heart and all your soul. (NASB) This is significant because finding, knowing, and being known by God is connected to the way we live our lives. The reason being, we live our lives based upon our faith. We decide what to do with the faith God gives. We can ignore it, we can misuse it by chasing after false gods, or we can receive it gladly and use it to embrace the gospel message which is to seek the Lord and His Messiah according to His Torah. When the Lord God says we must seek Him with all our heart, we understand that He has taken the first step toward us. He has done all that is necessary for us to draw near to Him. It is now up to us to engage our will and sinful desires to turn from them and to follow Him. The faith to seek Him is a gift, but we must accept it and exercise it to have a relationship with Him. It is kind of like our relationship with our spouses. Our spouse has given us love, and so we are must also do likewise. It is kind of like the saying, “you get what you give.” If we are not giving the Lord our lives in love to live according to His Word, if we are not at least “trying,” what do you think you will get in response from our Father in heaven?

The Psalm concludes saying, ז מְקִימִי מֵעָפָר דָּל מֵאַשְׁפֹּת יָרִים אֶבְיוֹן: ח לְהוֹשִׁיבִי עִם-נְדִיבִים עִם נְדִיבֵי עַמּוֹ: ט מוֹשִׁיבִי | עֲקֶרֶת הַבַּיִת אֵם-הַבָּנִים שְֹמֵחָה הַלְלוּיָהּ: 113:7 He raises the poor from the dust And lifts the needy from the ash heap, 113:8 To make them sit with princes, With the princes of His people. 113:9 He makes the barren woman abide in the house As a joyful mother of children. Praise the Lord! (NASB) The Lord is able to do what seems impossible. The psalmist uses the example of the poor the Lord raises up to sit as equals to princes in both wealth and in posterity. Rashi comments on the poor in the following way:

Rashi on Genesis 49:11:5

אסרי is the same as אוסר (i.e. the yod is redundant). Similar forms are: (Psalms 113:7) “who raiseth (מקימי instead of מקים) the poor out of the dust”, (Psalms 5:1) “that art enthroned” (היושבי instead of היושב) in the heavens”. In the same way is בני אתנו (instead of בן אתנו) to be explained. Onkelos translates v.11 as having reference to King Messiah: גפן “the vine” symbolizes “Israel” (cf. Psalms 80:9): “Thou didst pluck up a vine out of Egypt”); עירה (taken as עיר city with the ה suffix instead of ו, like סותה instead of סותו in thin verse) means Jerusalem; שורקה alludes to Israel as the prophet exclaims (Jeremiah 2:21) “Yet, I had planted thee a noble vine (שורק)”.

It is interesting how Rashi interprets the raising up of the poor to the King Messiah. This is consistent with the Targum translation, where the Aramaic Targum states, ז מקים מעפרא מסכינא מקיקלתא ומקלקלתא ירים חשוכא׃ ח לאותבא לאותובי עם רברביא עם רברבי עמיה׃ 113:7 Who raises up the poor man from the dust; he will lift up the needy from the ash-heap. 113:8 To make him dwell with the leaders, with the leaders of his people. (EMC) The Messiah is not believed to be raised up from wealthy persons. The reason one is raised up from the status of being poor is due to his having faith in the Lord, the sustainer and creator of all things. The Messiah is to be a leader of His people. The Lord raises him up to dwell with leaders. The character and kind of leader based upon the bible is to be a leader in righteousness, justice, and truth according to God’s Word and to lead others to do the same. To be raised in wealth would cause one to place their faith in their wealth. The Lord raises us up out of our troubles and from our sins to be leaders of truth and righteousness, and to speak of the Lord to all peoples to lead them to know the Lord and His Messiah. Just as the psalm states, ט מוֹשִׁיבִי | עֲקֶרֶת הַבַּיִת אֵם-הַבָּנִים שְֹמֵחָה הַלְלוּיָהּ: 113:9 He makes the barren woman abide in the house As a joyful mother of children. Praise the Lord! (NASB) it is true how the Lord is able to heal the hearts of even the most desperate of people, such as the woman who is unable to bear children. The Lord works in the heart to bring joy even in the midst of sorrow. For this we too can say Halleluyah (הַלְלוּיָהּ) Praise the Lord! Let’s Pray!

Rabbinic Commentary

The Rabbinic Commentary (Midrash) on Tehillim / Psalms 113 has 4 parts. Reading through the Midrash we will be looking at Part 1, 2, 3, and 4. Let’s begin by outlining Midrash Tehillim Chapter 113, Parts 1, 2, 3, and 4.

Outline of Midrash Tehillim / Psalms, Chapter 113, Part 1, 2, 3, and 4

Part 1

  • The Midrash introduces the Psalm with the דיבור המתחיל (Dibur Hamathil) saying, “Praise you the Lord. Praise, O you servants of the Lord, praise the name of the Lord (Tehillim / Psalms 113:1).”
  • The פתיחתא (Petihta) the homiletic introduction to the midrash states, “These words are to be considered in the light of the verse I have considered the days of old, the years of ancient times.
  • The משל (mashal) “the parable,” goes on to explain the פתיחתא (Petihta), the rabbis speak of calling to remembrance something the Lord has done.
  • The נמשל (Nimshal) “expansion on the parable” expands upon the משל (mashal), with descriptions of how the Lord delivers us from our enemies and for this we are able to give Him our praises.
  • The Concluding phrase says, “Accordingly, Rabbi Judah son of Simon took the words my song (neginati) in the night to refer to the song that night when You did redeem us and bring us forth into freedom. We were Pharaoh’s servants and You did redeem us, and make us Your servants. Therefore, it is said, Praise O you servants of the Lord, and not Praise, O you servants of Pharaoh.”

Part 2

  • The Midrash introduces the Psalm with the דיבור המתחיל (Dibur Hamathil) saying, “As different comment on Praise the Lord. Praise, O you servants of the Lord. Of the generation that uttered these words, Scripture says it opened its mouth with wisdom; and the law of kindness was on its tongue (Mishley / Proverbs 31:26).”
  • The פתיחתא (Petihta) the homiletic introduction to the midrash states, “You can count twenty six generations from the time that the Holy One blessed be He, created His universe until the time that Israel went forth out of Egypt; but no one of these generations said Praise the Lord until Israel went forth from Egypt, went forth from their servitude to clay and bricks.
  • The משל (mashal) “the parable,” goes on to explain the פתיחתא (Petihta), the rabbis speak of how closely tied to God’s deliverance from bondage are our praises.
  • The נמשל (Nimshal) “expansion on the parable” expands upon the משל (mashal), the rabbis expand upon the mashal speaking of freedom bring the root of our praises.
  • The Concluding phrase says, “So, too, Scripture says, For unto Me the children of Israel are servants (Vayikra / Leviticus 25:55). And again, You will have a song as in the night when a feast was hallowed (Isaiah 30:29).”

Part 3

  • The Midrash introduces the Psalm with the דיבור המתחיל (Dibur Hamathil) saying, “In a different interpretation of the phrase, Praise you Yah, it is observed, Why does not Scripture say, Praise you YHVH?”
  • The פתיחתא (Petihta) the homiletic introduction to the midrash states, “Rabbi Jeremiah explained in the name of Rabbi Eleazar, The world is not worthy enough to praise God with His whole Name, but with only half of His name, as is said, Let every thing that has breath praise Yah (Tehillim / Psalms 150:6).
  • The משל (mashal) “the parable,” goes on to explain the פתיחתא (Petihta), the rabbis speak of the name of God using the circumlocution.
  • The נמשל (Nimshal) “expansion on the parable” expands upon the משל (mashal), the rabbis expand upon the mashal speaking of the number of men who are to proclaim the hallel (praises) of God.
  • The Concluding phrase says, “And they say, Praise the name of the Lord (Tehillim / Psalms 113:1), the name in which He made war for us as is said, The Lord is a man of war, the Lord is His name (Shemot / Exodus 15:3).”

Part 4

  • The Midrash introduces the Psalm with the דיבור המתחיל (Dibur Hamathil) saying, “Blessed be the name of the Lord. From this time forth and forever more (Tehillim / Psalms 113:2).”
  • The פתיחתא (Petihta) the homiletic introduction to the midrash states, “In this world they praise Him, and then they provoke Him.
  • The משל (mashal) “the parable,” goes on to explain the פתיחתא (Petihta), the rabbis speak of how the people of this world give praise to the Lord and then turn around and provoke the Lord.
  • The נמשל (Nimshal) “expansion on the parable” expands upon the משל (mashal), the rabbis expand upon the mashal speaking this will not be so in the world to come.
  • The Concluding phrase says, “From this time forth and for ever (Tehillim / Psalms 125:2).”

Midrash Tehillim 113, Part 1 opens with the Dibur Hamathil (דיבור המתחיל) saying, “Praise you the Lord. Praise, O you servants of the Lord, praise the name of the Lord (Tehillim / Psalms 113:1).” The homiletic introduction to the midrash states, “These words are to be considered in the light of the verse I have considered the days of old, the years of ancient times.” The midrash speaks of ancient times and of the days of old. This reminds us of something Moshe said in the book of Deuteronomy.

Devarim / Deuteronomy 32:3-9

32:3 ‘For I proclaim the name of the Lord; Ascribe greatness to our God! 32:4 ‘The Rock! His work is perfect, For all His ways are just; A God of faithfulness and without injustice, Righteous and upright is He. 32:5 ‘They have acted corruptly toward Him, They are not His children, because of their defect; But are a perverse and crooked generation. 32:6 ‘Do you thus repay the Lord, O foolish and unwise people? Is not He your Father who has bought you? He has made you and established you. 32:7 ‘Remember the days of old, Consider the years of all generations. Ask your father, and he will inform you, Your elders, and they will tell you. 32:8 ‘When the Most High gave the nations their inheritance, When He separated the sons of man, He set the boundaries of the peoples According to the number of the sons of Israel. 32:9 ‘For the Lord’s portion is His people; Jacob is the allotment of His inheritance. (NASB)

Note how Moshe points out, according to Parashat Haazinu, the greatness of God’s power, He is a Rock, unshakable, perfect, and faithful. In the midst of this the people acted in disobedience, unfaithful, and unloving and an unwise people towards God. He then states, 32:7 ‘Remember the days of old, Consider the years of all generations. Ask your father, and he will inform you, Your elders, and they will tell you. (NASB) The idea is that we are called to study the Scriptures and to realize how the Lord has been so merciful to our forefathers, and how He continues to be merciful today in the midst of our own rebellion. The Lord separated His people setting us apart and stating (Devarim / Deuteronomy 32:8-9) that we are his allotment and inheritance.

The entire midrash states the following:

מדרש תהלים פרק קיג סימן א

א הללויה הללו עבדי ה׳ הללו את שם ה׳. זהו שאמר הכתוב אזכרה נגינתי בלילה עם לבבי אשיחה (תהלים עז ז), מהו אזכרה נגינתי, ר׳ אייבו ור׳ יהודה בר סימון, ר׳ אייבו אמר אמרה כנסת ישראל לפני הקב״ה רבש״ע מדכרא אנא תיברי, ואין נגינתי האמור כאן אלא שברוני, כמה דאת אמר אשר מגן צריך בידך (בראשית יד כ), אזכרה נגינתי בלילה לפיכך עם לבבי אשיחה, ר׳ יהודה בר סימון אמר אמרה כנסת ישראל לפני הקב״ה נזכרתי אני שעשית לי נסים במצרים והייתי מנגנת לך על ידי אותן נסים, ואמרתי לך שירים וזמרים באותה הלילה, שנאמר השיר (הזה) יהיה לכם כליל התקדש חג (ישעיה ל כט), ואימתי בשעה שהרגת בכורי מצרים בלילה, שנאמר ויהי בחצי הלילה (שמות יב כט), הוי אומר נגינתי בלילה באותה הלילה שגאלתנו והוצאתנו לחירות, שהיינו עבדים לפרעה, וגאלתנו ועשיתנו לך לעבדים, לכך נאמר הללו עבדי ה׳, ולא עבדי פרעה.

Midrash Tehillim 113, Part 1

1. Praise you the Lord. Praise, O you servants of the Lord, praise the name of the Lord (Tehillim / Psalms 113:1). These words are to be considered in the light of the verse I have considered the days of old, the years of ancient times. I call to remembrance neginati in the night; I commune with my own heart (Tehillim / Psalms 77:6-7). What is meant by I call to remembrance niginati? Rabbi Avihu and Rabbi Judah son of Simon differed. Rabbi Aibu took it to mean that the congregation of Israel says to the Holy One blessed be He, I call to remembrance the breaking of mine enemies’ power, neginati, meaning the breaking of mine enemies’ power as indicated by the verse God the Most High has delivered (miggen) your enemies into your hand (Bereshit / Genesis 14:20). And so the congregation of Israel says, Because I call to remembrance the breaking of mine enemies’ power in the night, therefore I commune with mine own heart. Rabbi Judah son of Simon took it to mean that the congregation of Israel said to the Holy One blessed be He, I call to remembrance the miracles which You did for me in Egypt, and how I sang songs to You because of the miracles, how indeed, I sang songs and Psalms to You during that night, as it is said, You will have a song as in the night when a feast was hallowed (Isaiah 30:29). And what was the night when a feast was hallowed? The night when You did strike the first born in the land of Egypt, as is said, And it came to pass at midnight, that the Lord struck all the first born in the land of Egypt (Shemot / Exodus 12:29). Accordingly, Rabbi Judah son of Simon took the words my song (neginati) in the night to refer to the song that night when You did redeem us and bring us forth into freedom. We were Pharaoh’s servants and You did redeem us, and make us Your servants. Therefore, it is said, Praise O you servants of the Lord, and not Praise, O you servants of Pharaoh.

The Midrash speaks of the “considering the days of old, the years of ancient times” as a reference to remembering and communing with our own heart, to consider our ways as opposed to the ways of God. The rabbis take this to mean that the remembrance is related to how the Lord broke the power of the enemy delivering our enemies into our hands. We according to the Scriptures know how the Lord works in the hearts of men. As the people proceeded to enter into the Promised Land, the Lord worked in the hearts of the people of the Land of Canaan to strike great fear and to cause them to loose their skill at fighting. In addition remembering the days of old, the ancient times, we are also told that the Lord God in heaven is given the title “Ancient of Days” which first appears in Daniel 7:9. When Daniel speaks of the Lord as the Ancient of Days, he is describing a vision of heaven. In the vision, he describes the Ancient One as sitting upon a flaming throne with wheels of fire, His hair and clothing white as snow. Note how these descriptions of the flaming throne are symbolic of judgment, while the white hair and title “Ancient” indicate that God existed before time began and these things are related to the Lord having victory over our enemies. Note that the greatest enemy of our lives is sin. In Isaiah 43:13 we are told that the Lord God refers to Himself existing from ancient of days which means literally that he existed “before days were.” This suggests that the Lord God existed before days were even created, which is consistent with the Torah account according to Bereshit / Genesis 1 that the Lord created time itself (days and nights, etc), The Lord existed from before the beginning of time. The Psalmist also represents the Lord God as ancient, saying He that is “from everlasting to everlasting” (Tehillim / Psalm 90:2) which is synonymous to His being “the first and the last” according to Isaiah 44:6. A similar description occurs in Revelation 1:14-15, wherein Yeshua the Messiah is described as having snow-white hair and blazing eyes. The title “Ancient of Days” is found only three times in Scripture, all three in prophetic passages in Daniel 7:9, 13, and 22, and is in reference to the power of God over the nations, and all of creation.

The midrash states, “I call to remembrance the breaking of mine enemies’ power, neginati, meaning the breaking of mine enemies’ power as indicated by the verse God the Most High has delivered (miggen) your enemies into your hand (Bereshit / Genesis 14:20). And so the congregation of Israel says, Because I call to remembrance the breaking of mine enemies’ power in the night, therefore I commune with mine own heart.” The idea is that this is in reference to the power of God over our situations in life. The alternative interpretation according to the midrash states:

Rabbi Judah son of Simon took it to mean that the congregation of Israel said to the Holy One blessed be He, I call to remembrance the miracles which You did for me in Egypt, and how I sang songs to You because of the miracles, how indeed, I sang songs and Psalms to You during that night, as it is said, You will have a song as in the night when a feast was hallowed (Isaiah 30:29). And what was the night when a feast was hallowed? The night when You did strike the first born in the land of Egypt, as is said, And it came to pass at midnight, that the Lord struck all the first born in the land of Egypt (Shemot / Exodus 12:29). (Midrash Tehillim 122, Part 1)

Remembering the Lord’s abilities are also connected to remembering the miracles the Lord has brought on our behalf because of His mercy and promises. Rashi speaks of remembrance in the following way:

Rashi on Deuteronomy 32:7, Part 2

בינו שנות דר ודר [CONSIDER] THE YEARS OF GENERATION AFTER GENERATION — the generation of Enosh over whom He caused the waters of the ocean to flow, and the generations of the flood whom He drowned by flood. Another explanation is: If you have not set your attention to the past (i.e. if you fail to remember the days of old, then) בינו שנות דר ודר CONSIDER at least THE YEARS OF GENERATION AND GENERATION so that you become conscious of what might happen in the future — that He has the power to bestow good upon you and to make you inherit the blissful days of Messiah and the world to come (cf. Siphre).

Rashi states that “the years of generation after generation” is a reference to remembering what the Lord has done and speaks of the generation of Enosh and the flood. This causes us to consider our ways, to seek the Lord and to walk in His ways of righteousness, justice, and truth, so we do not bring the curse due to living a sinful unrepentant life. We must keep God’s word in remembrance to understand what has happened in the past and to live our lives with the hopeful expectation of the future and how the Lord will work in our lives for deliverance from the enemy (i.e. persons, sin, habits, and even mental illness, etc). The future expectation of the Lord working in power, Rashi parallels to the days of the Messiah and of the Olam Haba (The world to come).

Sforno has the following to say:

Sforno on Deuteronomy 32:7 Part 1

זכור ימות עולם, After concluding the introductory section of his poem, during the course of which he announced that it was his purpose to proclaim the perfect righteousness of the Lord G’d, Who has proven a loyal G’d showering goodness upon the people of Israel, and Who would not reverse a blessing once bestowed, Moses begins to discuss Israel’s past and future. First, Moses reminds the people that G’d had originally hoped to bestow a brilliant future for all of mankind, i.e. ימות עולם, He had hoped that history would develop in that direction. When this failed to happen, שנות דור ודור, during the years of one generation after another, G’d decided on His pilot project the Jewish people and He raised them to an elevated position among the nations. This is basically what He will do at the end of “history,” [history is perceived as a period of education for the people filling or making a brief appearance on the stage of history. Ed.] Second, G’d had provided the people with optimum conditions to serve Him joyfully while they enjoyed all the material advantages that life on earth has to offer. He gave them a beautiful country, one flowing with milk and honey, to do this in. Instead, they rebelled and repaid good with evil. There can be no question that the people responsible for frustrating G’d’s master plan deserve to be severely punished for this. Third, due to the serious nature of their sin they deserve to be wiped out completely. If it were not for the desecration of the Lord’s name that would be a by-product of the destruction of His chosen people, nothing would have prevented G’d from administering this punishment. Fourth, Moses reveals the reason why the redemption of the Jewish people will occur at the end of what we call “history,’ באחרית היים. Fifth, Moses elaborates somewhat on the nature of this redemption and the retribution G’d will wreak at that time on the other nations of the world. The nations will primarily be punished for what they did to the Jewish people throughout history. These then are the five sections into which the portion of Haazinu is divided, our sages having given us an easy way of reminding ourselves of this division by calling the portion הזי’ו ל’ך. (Rosh Hashanah 31) Moses therefore commences with the words: זכור ימות עולם, “study history and thereby learn to recognize how much G’d had endeavored to shower good upon you, starting already with first man whom He transferred to Gan Eden, the most exclusive environment on earth.

Sforno states what Moshe had hoped for according to the Torah, that the Lord had a plan to bless Israel and through Israel then all of mankind. The Lord also provided optimum conditions in order to serve Him joyfully. These conditions were all the material advantages that life on earth had to offer (i.e. He gave them a beautiful country, one flowing with milk and honey). The people rebelled and did not live up to what the Lord had planned. Isn’t that the story of our lives too? The story of our lives that we do not want is how the people rebelled to such a great extent that the Lord cause them to die in the wilderness. In the process of remembering, we are to take these things into consideration in our own lives so we too are not wiped out due to unrepentant sins. Sforno comments that Moshe mentions the nature of God’s redemption, how it is dependent upon our seeking the Lord Himself. Parashat Haazinu was divided into sections as a reminder and to recognize how the Lord desires to shower upon us blessing after blessing which is illustrated in the idea that the Lord had placed Adam in the Garden of Eden. Our rebellion however can have the opposite effect due to the Lord working in our lives to draw us back to the truth, His ways, and to Himself.

Midrash Tehillim 113, Part 1 concludes saying, “Accordingly, Rabbi Judah son of Simon took the words my song (neginati) in the night to refer to the song that night when You did redeem us and bring us forth into freedom. We were Pharaoh’s servants and You did redeem us, and make us Your servants. Therefore, it is said, Praise O you servants of the Lord, and not Praise, O you servants of Pharaoh.” According to the Torah, the Lord is known as our redeemer, and this is why we are told to remember and how the remember of the ancient times makes us to remember the days of Messiah and the world to come. The Messiah Yeshua delivered us and payed that redemption price and lead us forth into freedom in this life and in the life that will be in the world to come.

Midrash Tehillim 113, Part 2 opens with the Dibur Hamathil (דיבור המתחיל) saying, “As different comment on Praise the Lord. Praise, O you servants of the Lord. Of the generation that uttered these words, Scripture says it opened its mouth with wisdom; and the law of kindness was on its tongue (Mishley / Proverbs 31:26).” The opening phrase speaks of wisdom that is found in the Scriptures and of the Law of Kindness. The פתיחתא (Petihta) the homiletic introduction to the midrash states, “You can count twenty six generations from the time that the Holy One blessed be He, created His universe until the time that Israel went forth out of Egypt; but not one of these generations said Praise the Lord until Israel went forth from Egypt, went forth from their servitude to clay and bricks.” The entire midrash states the following:

מדרש תהלים פרק קיג סימן ב

ב דבר אחר הללויה הללו עבדי ה׳. זהו שאמר הכתוב פיה פתחה בחכמה ותורת חסד על לשונה (משלי לא כו), אתה מוצא עשרים וששה דורות משברא הקב״ה את עולמו עד שיצאו ישראל ממצרים, ולא אמרו הלל, עד שיצאו משיעבוד מצרים, שהיה של טיט ולבנים ואמרו הלל, ואימתי אמרו בשעת מכות בכורות, עמד פרעה והלך אצל משה ואהרן בלילה, שנאמר ויקרא למשה ולאהרן לילה (שמות יב לא), היה דופק פרעה על פתחיהן של משה ואהרן בלילה ואמר להם קומו צאו מתוך עמי (שם שם שמות י״ב), אמרו לו שוטה וכי בלילה אנו עומדין, וכי גנבים אנו שנלך בלילה, בבוקר אנו יוצאין, שכך אמר לנו הקב״ה ואתם לא תצאו איש מפתח ביתו עד בקר (שם שם שמות י״ב כב), אמר להם הרי כבר מתים כל מצרים, שנאמר כי אמרו כולנו מתים (שם שם שמות י״ב לג), אמרו לו מבקש אתה לכלות המכה הזאת , אמור הרי אתם בני חורין, הרי אתם ברשותכם, ואין אתם עבדי, אלא עבדי ה׳, [התחיל פרעה צווח ואומר לשעבר הייתם עבדי, אבל עכשיו הרי אתם בני חורין, הרי אתם ברשותכם, הרי אתם עבדי ה׳] וצריכים אתם להללו שאתם עבדיו, שנאמר הללויה הללו עבדי ה׳, וכן הוא אומר כי לי בני ישראל עבדים (ויקרא כה נה), וכן הוא אומר השיר יהיה לכם כליל התקדש חג (ישעיה ל כט).

Midrash Tehillim 113, _Part 2

2. As different comment on Praise the Lord. Praise, O you servants of the Lord. Of the generation that uttered these words, Scripture says it opened its mouth with wisdom; and the law of kindness was on its tongue (Mishley / Proverbs 31:26). You can count twenty six generations from the time that the Holy One blessed be He, created His universe until the time that Israel went forth out of Egypt; but no one of these generations said Praise the Lord until Israel went forth from Egypt, went forth from their servitude to clay and bricks. It was then they said, Praise the Lord. During the plague of the first born. In the night Pharaoh arose and went to Moshe and Aaron, as is said, And he called for Moshe and Aaron by night (Shemot / Exodus 12:31). And in the night he knocked on the doors of Moshe and Aaron, and said to them, Rise up, get you forth from among my people. They answered, Fool, are we to arise in the night? Are we thieves that we should go forth by night? In the morning we will leave. It was thus, the Holy One blessed be He, charged us, None of you will go out of the door of his house until the morning (Shemot / Exodus 12:22). Pharaoh said to them, But by that time all the Egyptians will be dead. As it is written, They said, We are all dead men (Shemot / Exodus 33). Moshe and Aaron replied you seek to end this plague? Then say, Behold, you are free; behold, you are your own men, you are no longer servants of mine; you are servants of the Lord. Whereupon Pharaoh cried out, saying, Formerly you were my servants, but now behold, you are free. Behold, you are your own men. Behold, you are servants of the Lord, and being His servants, you are not obligated to praise Him, as is said, Praise the Lord. Praise, O you servants of the Lord. So, too, Scripture says, For unto Me the children of Israel are servants (Vayikra / Leviticus 25:55). And again, You will have a song as in the night when a feast was hallowed (Isaiah 30:29).

The rabbis cite Mishley / Proverbs 31:26 referring to the law of kindness. This reminds us of Paul’s words to the Ephesians according to Ephesians 4:21-5:2.

Ephesians 4:21-5:2

4:21 if indeed you have heard Him and have been taught in Him, just as truth is in Jesus, 4:22 that, in reference to your former manner of life, you lay aside the old self, which is being corrupted in accordance with the lusts of deceit, 4:23 and that you be renewed in the spirit of your mind, 4:24 and put on the new self, which in the likeness of God has been created in righteousness and holiness of the truth. 4:25 Therefore, laying aside falsehood, speak truth each one of you with his neighbor, for we are members of one another. 4:26 Be angry, and yet do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, 4:27 and do not give the devil an opportunity. 4:28 He who steals must steal no longer; but rather he must labor, performing with his own hands what is good, so that he will have something to share with one who has need. 4:29 Let no unwholesome word proceed from your mouth, but only such a word as is good for edification according to the need of the moment, so that it will give grace to those who hear. 4:30 Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. 4:31 Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. 4:32 Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you. 5:1 Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children; 5:2 and walk in love, just as Christ also loved you and gave Himself up for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God as a fragrant aroma. (NASB)

The Torah speaks of these things for the life of the children of God. The mercy of God leads us to having mercy on others and everything Paul is teaching to the Ephesians. Paul speaks of all of these things within the context of the sanctuary incense saying, 5:2 and walk in love, just as Christ also loved you and gave Himself up for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God as a fragrant aroma. (NASB) This concept is derived from the idea that whoever smelled the fragrance of the incense when it was being burned upon the altar would have had thoughts of repentance when going before the Lord with a sacrifice to make atonement for sin. The reason being, this incense was only burned at the Tabernacle and when one would present himself before God he would have done so in repentance. The incense effected the heart, and the heart would be purified of all the evil thoughts and from the defilement of the evil urge which is described as the “base animalistic drive of man.” Because of the incense, the heart would come to a state of Teshuvah before God, and as a result, the incense is said to be able to “break the power of the other side” so as to cause the one bringing the offering to make his heart right before God. This is significant when we consider the prohibition on the use of the incense by the general public. If the incense was taken for general use, the effective outcome would be that it would have no power over the heart of man for Teshuvah. This speaks of the necessity of sanctifying our hearts for the service of God. The Lord calls us to draw near to “The Place” (המקום), that sacred place, to seek His ways, where the sanctuary incense leads us to understand that our hearts and our lives are not for general use, but are sacred, and holy, and righteous.

The midrash speaks of all the generations prior to the Exodus from Egypt did not say “praise the Lord.” It was only following Israel’s deliverance that they praised the Lord for the deliverance of His people from bondage. The midrash describes the moments during the last plague in Egypt in the following way:

During the plague of the first born. In the night Pharaoh arose and went to Moshe and Aaron, as is said, And he called for Moshe and Aaron by night (Shemot / Exodus 12:31). And in the night he knocked on the doors of Moshe and Aaron, and said to them, Rise up, get you forth from among my people. They answered, Fool, are we to arise in the night? Are we thieves that we should go forth by night? In the morning we will leave. It was thus, the Holy One blessed be He, charged us, None of you will go out of the door of his house until the morning (Shemot / Exodus 12:22). (Midrash Tehillim 113, Part 2)

The idea is that Pharaoh rose and spoke to Moshe and Aaron to leave at night because of the plague, and both Moshe and Aaron argued that we do not raise up during the night because we are not thieves. This is a significant observation as it is related to who we are as God’s people, where we seek the Lord our Father in heaven as the children of the light and in broad daylight and understand that our hearts and our lives are sacred, and holy, and righteous.

Pharaoh said to them, But by that time all the Egyptians will be dead. As it is written, They said, We are all dead men (Shemot / Exodus 33). Moshe and Aaron replied you seek to end this plague? Then say, Behold, you are free; behold, you are your own men, you are no longer servants of mine; you are servants of the Lord. Whereupon Pharaoh cried out, saying, Formerly you were my servants, but now behold, you are free. Behold, you are your own men. Behold, you are servants of the Lord, and being His servants, you are not obligated to praise Him, as is said, Praise the Lord. Praise, O you servants of the Lord. (Midrash Tehillim 113, Part 2)

Serving the Lord is freedom and not bondage. This is why we are told in the midrash that we are not obligated to praise Him, but that the reason we praise is because of our love for Him due to His mercy and deliverance that He provides. As men that are free, we realize that we are not free to do as we will. In addition, we also realize that sin always wants to reign us back in to bondage. Because of these things, it is imperative that we seek the Lord each day, and seek the Lord for help and for victory in our daily lives.

Midrash Tehillim 113, Part 2 concludes saying, “So, too, Scripture says, For unto Me the children of Israel are servants (Vayikra / Leviticus 25:55). And again, You will have a song as in the night when a feast was hallowed (Isaiah 30:29).” We are called His children and His servants. The midrash quotes Isaiah to say that we will have a song, this highlights the fact that we are His servants and that serving Him is a joyful thing.

Midrash Tehillim 113, Part 3 opens with the Dibur Hamathil (דיבור המתחיל) saying, “In a different interpretation of the phrase, Praise you Yah, it is observed, Why does not Scripture say, Praise you YHVH?” The פתיחתא (Petihta) the homiletic introduction to the midrash states, “Rabbi Jeremiah explained in the name of Rabbi Eleazar, The world is not worthy enough to praise God with His whole Name, but with only half of His name, as is said, Let every thing that has breath praise Yah (Tehillim / Psalms 150:6).” The entire midrash states the following:

מדרש תהלים פרק קיג סימן ג

ג דבר אחר הללויה למה לא אמר הללו ה׳. ר׳ ירמיה בשם ר׳ אלעזר אומר אין העולם כדאי להלל בכל השם, אלא בחציו שנאמר כל הנשמה תהלל יה (תהלים קנ ו) לכך הללו יה. [הללו יה הללו עבדי ה׳ הללו את שם ה׳], מכאן אמרו חכמים אין הלל פחות משלשה בני אדם, למי אומר הללו לשנים [והאומר אחד הרי כאן שלשה], והאומרים הללו לשם שעשה לנו מלחמה, שנאמר ה׳ איש מלחמה ה׳ שמו (שמות טו ג).

Midrash Tehillim 113, Part 3

3. In a different interpretation of the phrase, Praise you Yah, it is observed, Why does not Scripture say, Praise you YHVH? Rabbi Jeremiah explained in the name of Rabbi Eleazar, The world is not worthy enough to praise God with His whole Name, but with only half of His name, as is said, Let every thing that has breath praise Yah (Tehillim / Psalms 150:6). Hence it is said, Praise you Yah. Praise you Yah. Praise, O you servants of the Lord. From this verse, the Sages concluded that the Psalms of Hallel should be said by no fewer than three men, For to whom is the verse Praise, O you servants of the Lord said? To at least two men, who with the man that speaks the verse make no fewer than three. And they say, Praise the name of the Lord (Tehillim / Psalms 113:1), the name in which He made war for us as is said, The Lord is a man of war, the Lord is His name (Shemot / Exodus 15:3).

The opening phrase of the midrash speaks of the circumlocution Yah that is written in place of the YHVH. The idea that writing the Name of God warrants special consideration is derived from the rabbinic interpretation on Devarim / Deuteronomy 12:3 which states the following:

Devarim / Deuteronomy 12:3-4

12:3 ‘You shall tear down their altars and smash their sacred pillars and burn their Asherim with fire, and you shall cut down the engraved images of their gods and obliterate their name from that place. 12:4 ‘You shall not act like this toward the Lord your God. (NASB, ג וְנִתַּצְתֶּם אֶת-מִזְבְּחֹתָם וְשִׁבַּרְתֶּם אֶת-מַצֵּבֹתָם וַאֲשֵׁרֵיהֶם תִּשְֹרְפוּן בָּאֵשׁ וּפְסִילֵי אֱלֹהֵיהֶם תְּגַדֵּעוּן וְאִבַּדְתֶּם אֶת-שְׁמָם מִן-הַמָּקוֹם הַהוּא: ד לֹא-תַעֲשֹוּן כֵּן לַיהוָֹה אֱלֹהֵיכֶם:)

The command to destroy idols is given in Devarim / Deuteronomy 12:3. Immediately following this verse is Devarim / Deuteronomy 12:4 which states that you must never do anything like this to the Lord your God. Based upon a careful discussion on these verses, the rabbis declared that it is forbidden to deface the divine Name that is written on paper, cloth, metal, or a seal upon which the name is written. As a result, in Judaism writing the name is avoided in order to circumvent the risk of defacing, obliterating, or accidentally destroying the name. In Jewish Halakhah, the writing of the name does not apply to the computer screen, but only to what is printed from the computer screen, something that is considered a permanent form. Since Jewish Halakhah states that it is forbidden to erase the Name that is written, the common practice then is to write the name using letter substitutes, examples would be Elokim (for Elohim), G-d (for God), and L-rd (for Lord), etc. This roundabout way of writing the Name is called a circumlocution. This was accomplished in the Masoretic text on the Psalms by writing Yah as opposed to YHVH. Note in the Aramaic Targum we find יהוה >> יי where the rabbis choose to write the name in a different form, not to hide its true pronunciation as some would suggest, but to protect the sacredness of the name from being destroyed per Devarim / Deuteronomy 12:3-4.

The midrash states that the name being spelled as Yah is meant that the world is not worthy to speak the whole name of God but only half of His name. This is an important observation that the rabbis are making here. The midrash states that Yah is only “half” of the name of God. I have come across many who follow the sacred name movement who believe it is the whole and not the half. If we are to consider the experts (the rabbis) interpretation on the name Yah, then Yah is only half the name and the YHVH is the whole name of God. In addition, to pronounce the name with the wrong motivation would be wrong to do as well, meaning that the name of God is sacred and we should not attempt at public pronunciations of the name as many today are claiming is necessary. The rabbis go on to interpret the meaning of the Psalm saying that based upon the repetition of the name Yah in the psalm, the Hallel (Praise) should be said by no fewer than three men.

Midrash Tehillim 113, Part 3 concludes saying, “And they say, Praise the name of the Lord (Tehillim / Psalms 113:1), the name in which He made war for us as is said, The Lord is a man of war, the Lord is His name (Shemot / Exodus 15:3).” Contained within the name is the character of God that is coupled with His mighty works as we read according to the Scriptures. This is why there is such emphasis placed upon the sacredness of the name and on the manner in which it should be used (or guarded). The idea is due to the sacredness of the name, holy books that contain the name of God are not to be destroyed. Books or scrolls that are retired are not discarded when containing any of the Names of God. These are placed in a genizah, or cemetery, for sacred writings (usually a storeroom in a synagogue). It is for this reason we have so much historical record of the finding of the Scriptures in archeology in the land of Israel. The protection (guarding) of the name due to Devarim / Deuteronomy 12:3-4 has provided us with much historical evidence on the precision (reproduction) of the Scriptures that we have today.

Midrash Tehillim 113, Part 4 opens with the Dibur Hamathil (דיבור המתחיל) saying, “Blessed be the name of the Lord. From this time forth and forever more (Tehillim / Psalms 113:2).” The פתיחתא (Petihta) the homiletic introduction to the midrash states, “In this world they praise Him, and then they provoke Him.” The entire midrash states the following:

מדרש תהלים פרק קיג סימן ד

ד יהי שם ה׳ מבורך מעתה ועד עולם. בעולם הזה קלסוהו ואח״כ הכעיסוהו, אבל לעתיד לבוא אינו כן, אלא מעתה ועד עולם, ואף אני אומר לכם שתעמדו לעולם, אמר הקב״ה אתם ברכתם אותי מעולם ועד עולם, ואף אני מברך אתכם ואומר וה׳ סביב לעמו מעתה ועד עולם (תהלים קכה ב).

Midrash Tehillim 113, Part 4

4. Blessed be the name of the Lord. From this time forth and forever more (Tehillim / Psalms 113:2). In this world they praise Him, and then they provoke Him. But not so in the time to come, for then they will praise Him from this time forth and fore ever more. Therefore, I say to you that you also will endure for ever, for the Holy One blessed be He, says, you praise Me from this time forth and for ever more, so I will bless you, as Scripture says, The Lord is round about His people. From this time forth and for ever (Tehillim / Psalms 125:2).

The Rabbis say in the Megillah 17a:16 the following:

Megillah 17a:16

Rav Avya said: It is derived from the verse in hallel: “Blessed be the name of the Lord” (Tehillim / Psalms 113:2), indicating that the blessing of God must “be” just as it is written. Rav Naḥman bar Yitzḥak said, and some say that it was Rav Aḥa bar Ya’akov who said: It is derived from here, the end of the aforementioned verse: “From now and for evermore” (Tehillim / Psalms 113:2), i.e., it should be like time, which cannot be reversed.

The Megillah speaks of the blessing of the name of the Lord according to Tehillim / Psalms 113:2. The blessing of the name of the Lord is coupled to that which cannot be reversed. What the Lord has promised He will do. The rabbis of De-Rab Kahana Piska 20:1 states that the ending verse Tehillim / Psalms 113:9 He makes the barren woman abide in the house As a joyful mother of children. Praise the Lord! (NASB) is a reference to Hannah.

Pesikta De-Rab Kahana, Piska 20:1

(trans. William G. Braude and Israel Kapstein) at 331 “Who maketh the barren woman to dwell in her house as a happy mother of children.” There were seven such barren women: Sarah, Rebekah, Rachel, Lead, Manoah’s wife, Hannah, and Zion….The words “he maketh the barren woman to dwell in her house” apply to Hannah: “Peninnah had children, but Hannah had no children” (1 Sam. 1:2); and so do the words “as a happy mother of children”–”Hannah conceived and bore three sons and two daughters” (1 Sam. 2:21).

The Peskita lists seven barren women and how being barren causes the women to abide in the house, which may be the house of the Lord to seek the Lord for help to be fruitful and produce children. This is in agreement with the Talmud Bavli in Berakhot 31a and 31b.

Talmud Bavli Berakhot 31a

Rab Hamnuna said : How many weighty Halakot there are to be learnt from the passage relating to Hannah ! “Now Hannah, she spake in her heart” (I Sam. i. 13) — hence it is deduced that one who prays must direct his heart. “Only her lips moved” — hence, one who prays must pronounce [the words] with his lips. “But her voice was not heard” — hence, it is forbidden to raise the voice when praying. “Therefore Eli thought she had been drunken” — hence, it is forbidden to pray when intoxicated. “And Eli said to her. How long wilt thou be drunken?” (ibid. v. 14) — [[fol. 31 b.]] R. Eleazar said: Hence, if one sees in his neighbor (ברכות ל״א א, אמר רב המנונא כמה הלכתא גברוותא איכא למשמע מהני קראי דחנה (שמואל א א, יג) וחנה היא מדברת על לבה מכאן למתפלל צריך שיכוין לבו רק שפתיה נעות מכאן למתפלל שיחתוך בשפתיו וקולה לא ישמע מכאן שאסור להגביה קולו בתפלתו ויחשבה עלי לשכורה מכאן ששכור אסור להתפלל ויאמר אליה עלי עד מתי תשתכרין וגו’ א”ר אלעזר מכאן לרואה בחברו)

Talmud Bavli Berakhot 31b

anything that is unseemly, he must rebuke him. “And Hannah answered and said, No, my lord” (ibid. v. 15) — ‘Ulla (another version: R. Jose b. R. Hannina) declared : She said to Eli, “Thou art not ‘a lord’ in this affair, nor does the Holy Spirit rest upon thee, seeing thou hast suspected me of this thing.” Some declare that she spoke to him thus : “Thou art not a lord ; neither the Shekinah nor the Holy Spirit is with thee, for thou hast judged me in the scale of guilt and not in the scale of merit. Dost thou not know ‘I am a woman of sorrowful spirit’?” “I have drunk neither wine nor strong drink” — R. Eleazar said : Hence it is deduced that one who is wrongly suspected must clear himself. “Count not thy handmaid for a wicked woman” (I Sam. i. 16) — R. Eleazar said : Hence it is inferred that if a drunken person prays, it is as though he practiced idolatry; for it is written here “a wicked woman,” and elsewhere it is written, “Certain base fellows are gone out from the midst of thee” (Deut. xiii. 14) — as the reference in this latter passage is to idolatry, so also in the other passage idolatry is intended. “Then Eli answered and said, Go in peace” (I Sam. i. 17) — R. Eleazar said : Hence, if one wrongly suspected another, he must conciliate him ; nay more, he must bless him ; as it is said, “And the God of Israel grant thy petition” (ibid.). “And she vowed a vow and said, O Lord of hosts” (ibid. v. 11) — R. Eleazar said : From the day that the Holy One, blessed be He, created His universe, there was nobody who called Him “[Lord of] hosts” until Hannah came and gave Him that designation. Hannah said before the Holy One, blessed be He, “Lord of the universe ! From all the multitudes of hosts which Thou hast created in Thy universe, is it hard in Thine eyes to grant me even one son?” (ברכות ל״א ב, דבר שאינו הגון צריך להוכיחו ותען חנה ותאמר לא אדני אמר עולא ואיתימא רבי יוסי ברבי חנינא אמרה ליה לא אדון אתה בדבר זה ולא רוח הקודש שורה עליך שאתה חושדני בדבר זה איכא דאמרי הכי אמרה ליה לא אדון אתה לאו איכא שכינה ורוח הקודש גבך שדנתני לכף חובה ולא דנתני לכף זכות מי לא ידעת דאשה קשת רוח אנכי ויין ושכר לא שתיתי אמר רבי אלעזר מכאן לנחשד בדבר שאין בו שצריך להודיעו אל תתן את אמתך לפני בת בליעל אמר רבי אלעזר מכאן לשכור שמתפלל כאלו עובד ע”ז כתיב הכא לפני בת בליעל וכתיב התם (דברים יג, יד) יצאו אנשים בני בליעל מקרבך מה להלן ע”ז אף כאן ע”ז ויען עלי ויאמר לכי לשלום אמר רבי אלעזר מכאן לחושד את חברו בדבר שאין בו שצריך לפייסו ולא עוד אלא שצריך לברכו שנאמר ואלהי ישראל יתן את שלתך: ותדר נדר ותאמר ה’ צבאות אמר רבי אלעזר מיום שברא הקב”ה את עולמו לא היה אדם שקראו להקב”ה צבאות עד שבאתה חנה וקראתו צבאות אמרה חנה לפני הקב”ה רבש”ע מכל צבאי צבאות שבראת בעולמך קשה בעיניך שתתן לי בן אחד)

The rabbis interpret Hanna’s manner in prayer (her heart, her silence, the moving of her lips) as a way to define how we go before the Lord in prayer. We are to turn our hearts to the Lord, speaks words with our lips but do not raise our voice, and to be humble. Note that the rabbis interpret a person who goes before the Lord in prayer drunk, is as one who practices idolatry. This is an interesting concept and is related to the state of our minds, we are not to go before the Lord with any sort of mind altering drugs in our bodies. Hannah’s prayer is found in 1 Samuel 2:1-10.

1 Samuel 2:1-10

(1) And Hannah prayed, and said: My heart exulteth in the LORD, My horn is exalted in the LORD; My mouth is enlarged over mine enemies; Because I rejoice in Thy salvation. (2) There is none holy as the LORD, For there is none beside Thee; Neither is there any rock like our God. (3) Multiply not exceeding proud talk; Let not arrogancy come out of your mouth; For the LORD is a God of knowledge, And by Him actions are weighed. (4) The bows of the mighty men are broken, And they that stumbled are girded with strength. (5) They that were full have hired out themselves for bread; And they that were hungry have ceased; While the barren hath borne seven, She that had many children hath languished. (6) The LORD killeth, and maketh alive; He bringeth down to the grave, and bringeth up. (7) The LORD maketh poor, and maketh rich; He bringeth low, He also lifteth up. . (8) He raiseth up the poor out of the dust, He lifteth up the needy from the dung-hill, To make them sit with princes, And inherit the throne of glory; For the pillars of the earth are the LORD’S, And He hath set the world upon them. (9) He will keep the feet of His holy ones, But the wicked shall be put to silence in darkness; For not by strength shall man prevail. (10) They that strive with the LORD shall be broken to pieces; Against them will He thunder in heaven; The LORD will judge the ends of the earth; And He will give strength unto His king, And exalt the horn of His anointed. (שמואל א ב׳:א׳-י׳, (א) וַתִּתְפַּלֵּ֤ל חַנָּה֙ וַתֹּאמַ֔ר עָלַ֤ץ לִבִּי֙ בַּֽיהוָ֔ה רָ֥מָה קַרְנִ֖י בַּֽיהוָ֑ה רָ֤חַב פִּי֙ עַל־א֣וֹיְבַ֔י כִּ֥י שָׂמַ֖חְתִּי בִּישׁוּעָתֶֽךָ׃ (ב) אֵין־קָד֥וֹשׁ כַּיהוָ֖ה כִּ֣י אֵ֣ין בִּלְתֶּ֑ךָ וְאֵ֥ין צ֖וּר כֵּאלֹהֵֽינוּ׃ (ג) אַל־תַּרְבּ֤וּ תְדַבְּרוּ֙ גְּבֹהָ֣ה גְבֹהָ֔ה יֵצֵ֥א עָתָ֖ק מִפִּיכֶ֑ם כִּ֣י אֵ֤ל דֵּעוֹת֙ יְהוָ֔ה ולא [וְל֥וֹ] נִתְכְּנ֖וּ עֲלִלֽוֹת׃ (ד) קֶ֥שֶׁת גִּבֹּרִ֖ים חַתִּ֑ים וְנִכְשָׁלִ֖ים אָ֥זְרוּ חָֽיִל׃ (ה) שְׂבֵעִ֤ים בַּלֶּ֙חֶם֙ נִשְׂכָּ֔רוּ וּרְעֵבִ֖ים חָדֵ֑לּוּ עַד־עֲקָרָה֙ יָלְדָ֣ה שִׁבְעָ֔ה וְרַבַּ֥ת בָּנִ֖ים אֻמְלָֽלָה׃ (ו) יְהוָ֖ה מֵמִ֣ית וּמְחַיֶּ֑ה מוֹרִ֥יד שְׁא֖וֹל וַיָּֽעַל׃ (ז) יְהוָ֖ה מוֹרִ֣ישׁ וּמַעֲשִׁ֑יר מַשְׁפִּ֖יל אַף־מְרוֹמֵֽם׃ (ח) מֵקִ֨ים מֵעָפָ֜ר דָּ֗ל מֵֽאַשְׁפֹּת֙ יָרִ֣ים אֶבְי֔וֹן לְהוֹשִׁיב֙ עִם־נְדִיבִ֔ים וְכִסֵּ֥א כָב֖וֹד יַנְחִלֵ֑ם כִּ֤י לַֽיהוָה֙ מְצֻ֣קֵי אֶ֔רֶץ וַיָּ֥שֶׁת עֲלֵיהֶ֖ם תֵּבֵֽל׃ (ט) רַגְלֵ֤י חסידו [חֲסִידָיו֙] יִשְׁמֹ֔ר וּרְשָׁעִ֖ים בַּחֹ֣שֶׁךְ יִדָּ֑מּוּ כִּֽי־לֹ֥א בְכֹ֖חַ יִגְבַּר־אִֽישׁ׃ (י) יְהוָ֞ה יֵחַ֣תּוּ מריבו [מְרִיבָ֗יו] עלו [עָלָיו֙] בַּשָּׁמַ֣יִם יַרְעֵ֔ם יְהוָ֖ה יָדִ֣ין אַפְסֵי־אָ֑רֶץ וְיִתֶּן־עֹ֣ז לְמַלְכּ֔וֹ וְיָרֵ֖ם קֶ֥רֶן מְשִׁיחֽוֹ׃ (פ))

Faithful is the Lord in giving life to the dead. Praised is the Lord for the works of His hands. The Midrash states that the people praised the Lord and then they provoked Him. As people who live in this world are given to sin, it is understandable how the people of Israel provoked the Lord all of their lives. In similar ways, we too provoke the Lord. The difference is that we do not seek the provocation. We are called to earnestly seek the Lord God of Israel and Yeshua the Messiah in repentance, and to turn from our sinful ways. We live with this hopeful expectation as the midrash states, that “in the time to come, for then they will praise Him from this time forth and fore ever more.” This means that one day we will be with the Lord face to face and we will not rebel in the world to come (Olam Haba) which is a way of saying that one day our bodies will also be redeemed, leading us to the idea of the importance of the resurrection and of taking part in the resurrection of God. Midrash Tehillim 113 Part 4 concludes saying, “Therefore, I say to you that you also will endure for ever, for the Holy One blessed be He, says, you praise Me from this time forth and for ever more, so I will bless you, as Scripture says, The Lord is round about His people. From this time forth and for ever (Tehillim / Psalms 125:2).“From this time forth and for ever (Tehillim / Psalms 125:2).” The Lord is round about His people meaning that He has us in His hands and we may confidently trust in His righteousness and justice for our lives. Let’s Pray!

Tehillim 113-Part1-and-2

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Duane D. Miller received his Ph.D., M.S., and B.S. Degree in Chemical Engineering from The University of Akron Ohio. He is currently a Chemical Engineering Researcher. Duane’s research expertise has focused upon functional materials development for the control, conversion, and release of process gases in Energy production technologies. His R&D interests include computational chemistry, developing novel technologies for converting biomass to fuels and studying their fundamental interactions during the chemical conversion process. His past experience includes sorbent development for pre- and post-combustion CO2 and SO2 capture, selective absorption of H2S from methane streams, O2 capture for oxy-fuel combustion, photocatalytic reduction of alcohols, NOx reduction catalysis, the development of oxygen carriers to combust fossil fuels (CH4 and coal) for the chemical looping combustion processes, and the extraction of rare earth elements using patent pending sorbents. His research expertise has focused on operando-characterization using Infrared, Raman, and UV-Vis spectroscopy to observe the nature of the catalytic active sites and reaction intermediates under realistic reaction conditions, allowing direct correlation of molecular/electronic structures with catalyst performance during Gas-Solid / Liquid-Solid Adsorption and Photocatalytic Processes with real time online analysis of reaction products using ICP-MS and mass spectrometry. His current work involves a multi-disciplinary approach to developing, understanding, and improving the catalytic gasification of coal and methane, high temperature chemical looping combustion, and the catalytic decomposition and gasification of biomass and coal using novel microwave reactor.​ He has been studying the Hebrew Scriptures and the Torah for 20+ years and sharing what he has learned. The studies developed for MATSATI.COM are freely to be used by everyone, to God be the Glory!