150:0Christians and Jews say that this is a very special psalm. Someone wrote it to finish the Book of Psalms. This was perhaps after the exile. The exile was 600 years before Jesus came to the earth. Babylon was a country 800 kilometres east of Jerusalem. Today we call it Iraq. The army of Babylon destroyed Jerusalem. They also destroyed the temple in Jerusalem. The temple was God's house in Jerusalem. The army of Babylon took many Jews to Babylon. They made them live there. This was the exile.
The Jews went back to their own land 70 years later. They built Jerusalem and the temple again. Then the Jews made the Book of Psalms. It was to sing in the new temple. They used psalms by Moses, by David, by Isaiah, by the sons of Korah and by many other people. But Bible students think that they wrote two new psalms for their book. They were Psalm 1 and Psalm 150. Maybe they wrote other psalms also, perhaps Psalms 146-149.
God is the Best! (The Last Hallelujah Psalm)
Shout, ‘You are the best’ to God the LORD.
Do it in his temple. Do it in the skies.
2 Shout, ‘You are the best’ to him because he is very strong.
Shout, ‘You are the best’ to him because he is very powerful.
3 Sing, ‘You are the best’ to him with music.
Use horns and harps and guitars.
150:3The Jews did not have guitars. We translated ‘lyre’ as ‘guitar.’ Today we also have musical instruments that use electricity, such as the electric guitar. Strings now include the violin and the cello. Christians believe that we should use these new instruments to praise the LORD, as well as the old ones!
4 Sing, ‘You are the best’ to him with music.
Use dancing and drums, strings and pipes.
5 Sing, ‘You are the best’ to him with music.
Use big and small cymbals.
6 Everything that is alive, shout to the LORD, ‘You are the best.’
150:6The word ‘hallelu’ is in every verse of this psalm in the Hebrew Bible. We usually translate it ‘praise’, or ‘tell someone that they are great.’ But here we translated it ‘you are the best.’ Nobody is better than God. LORD is another name for God. It is his covenant name. A covenant is when two people, or groups of people, agree. Here, God agreed to love and send help to his people. His people agreed to love and obey God.
Many Christians still use the Hebrew word hallelujah:
‘HALEL’ means tell someone that they are great
‘U’ means all of you
‘JAH’ means a name for God that we translate ‘LORD’