Worship Moments, Episode 27 – Lifting Hands

Episode 27 - Lifting Hands

In Episode 27 of Worship Moments, Dr. Wyrick shows that one of the most common postures in Old Testament worship was lifting of the hands.


Text of Video

For those who prefer to read, here is the text of the video.

In this video I want to introduce you to the Hebrew word “Yadah”. Hebrew was the primary language of the Old Testament and “Yadah” is a word that is almost always translated as “praise” or “thanksgiving”.

But the word literally means “to hold out, or extend, the hand.” So why is it normally translated as praise or thanksgiving? Why did the Biblical writers use it to mean “praise”? The Hebrew language tends to use more concrete words like “raising hands” and “bowing” rather than abstract words like “praise” and “worship”. It is likely that the action of raising or extending the hand became so associated with praise and thanksgiving that it began to be used interchangeably.

My point is this: one of the most common postures we see used in worship in the Old Testament is raising hands. It is even more common than we realize because the word “Yadah” occurs over 100 times and it is most often translated as “praise” or “thanksgiving”, but it actually implies the raising of hands.

So next time you praise or thank God, I encourage you to consider raising your hands. Start small if you need to – just a little opening of the hands in front of you. Or go all out. Whatever feels right to you, but I strongly encourage you to give it a try.

Your posture impacts your emotions and raising hands is a biblical posture for praise and thanksgiving. Why not try it out right now? As Psalm 134:2 says, “Lift up your hands in the holy place and praise the Lord!”

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