by Brad ScottOne of the most universal and controversial words is also one of the most simple in its etymology. This word comes from the Hebrew verbal root yadah (ידה). It means to lift up the hand in praise. This word is very descriptive of the nature of God's people and those who choose to follow Him. The first occurrence of this word so succinctly describes it's meaning.
Bere’shiyt (Genesis) 29:35And she conceived again, and bare a son: and she said, now will I praise YHVH: therefore she called his name Judah; and left bearing.
Because of this meaningful name, this is the tribe that YHVH always chose to lead the twelve tribes of Israel. Much modern day worship services from God's people today comes from the meaning of this word. Praise always leads us. In 2 Chronicles Jehoshaphat is victorious over Ammon and Moab by sending out the praise first:
Divre-Hayamim Bet (2 Chronicles) 20:21And when he had consulted with the people, he appointed singers unto YHVH, who should praise the beauty of holiness, as they went out before the army, and to say, Praise YHVH; for his mercy endureth for ever.
Judah (hands of praise) led the children of Israel in the wilderness.
Bemidebar (Numbers) 2:9All that were numbered in the camp of Judah were an hundred thousand and fourscore thousand and six thousand and four hundred, throughout their armies. These shall first set forth.
Those who choose to lift up their hand in praise and obedience to the God of Israel are seen as joining with Judah in the eyes of the only One that counts.
1 Kefa (1 Peter) 2:9But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:
Shalom Alecheim! ◊