from my notebook

My head is full of thoughts, and I have to write them down.

Selah Worship

I find the Hebrew word selah a fascinating little word.  It is found scattered throughout the book of Psalms with its first appearance in Psalm 3.  The Amplified Bible defines Selah as “pause, and calmly think of that”.  A notation to meditate on the previous passage.

But since Psalms is a book of songs, we can further understand its meaning in musical terms.  The Apologetics Study Bible gives a possible definition of “lift up”.  An instruction for musicians inserted when the Psalms were adapted to temple service.  When looked at that way, selah could denote an instrumental interlude like a harp solo.  Today we would translate it as that jamming electric guitar solo.

Well maybe not so much.

Even though there seems to be differing opinions on the exact purpose and meaning of this elusive word, I think it could be key to our worship time.  Remember to routinely pause and meditate not only as we read God’s word, but also as we sing his word.


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