The Lifting of the Hand
The Lifting of the Hand
The human hand, a very detailed and intricate part of the body. Consisting of 27 bones, and 14 movable joints. Known to be one of the most used parts of the antinomy, well… except for some of us, that would be the …tongue, I have been told I have the ‘Holy anointed gift of gab’, I just add ‘study‘ to it, to give it teeth!
Within the hand lies a unique mark that positively identifies each individual, the fingerprint. Every person is born with their own ‘calling card’ if you will, no two prints are alike.
The gentle brush against the cheek of an infant while sleeping, is in the hand. Strength, when toiling the soil, is found in the hand and it is in the grip, that ‘welcome’ is expressed. But the lifting of the hand, is at times where the heart connects in worship to God. Many of you may be getting a little hesitant here, by that statement. Lifting the hands in worship is not reserved just for those sitting in the ‘Pentecostal’ pews. Moses and David lifted their hands to God. One of my all time favorite heroes of the bible, Abraham too lifted his hand…. Gen. 14:22 Abraham said to the King of Sodom, ‘I have lift up mine hand unto the LORD, the Most High God, the possessor of heaven and earth.’ This is one of the most solid statements Abraham had declared, as he sat across in conversation with this king, he was saying he had predetermined a value, a standard by which he was going to conduct his life and that of his family. It was a clear statement of relationship… declaring he had already done business with the Lord, with a raised hand, a commitment was made.
‘I have set the LORD continually before me,
because He is at my right hand, I will not
be shaken.’ (Ps. 16:8 )
One of the Hebrew words used for hand is ‘yad’ the open hand, the ‘palm’ – indicating power, direction, but it means more…. it denotes our desire to fill or have them filled. And God wants to fill those hands with Himself! We find Him ‘filling’ in Ex. 40:34 ‘then the cloud covered the tent of the congregation and the glory filled the Tabernacle’. The verb used, is to fill to overflowing…. not just filling up to the limits of something, but filling so as to go beyond it’s limits. ( Vine’s Heb./Grk Dictionary). It reminds me of Michelangelo’s famous painting found on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, The Creation of Man , he portrays God’s arm stretched out and man’s hand raised up to make that connection.
At the same time it is yielding as in consecration, the lifting of the hands as mentioned in Ps. 28:2 by David, ‘Hear my cry for mercy as I lift my hands toward Your Most Holy place.’ denotes to hand oneself over . Haven’t we all at certain times in our lives, thrown our hands in the air, as in surrender, ‘I give up, I can’t do this anymore’. So it is in our worship, we lift our hands to acknowledge we no longer want the direction we are going, we yield to the Most High God, fill us with Your presence, YOU are full of POWER, MIGHT and MAJESTY! With the opening of the hand, the palm, we symbolize we release us, and in turn receive Him.
There are many postures of worship – standing, kneeling, a slight bow of the head, the lifting of the hands, I have even found myself prostrate on the floor face down. All are unique in our response to Him.
Do we need to recommit, surrender – declare as Abraham did, ‘I set You as my standard to conduct my life, do business with God?’ Or is there a cry in our hearts…. I need YOU, and YOU alone! So we feel silly getting fanatical in our worship …. I believe if David had been brought on the scene of the N.T. (particularly the book of Acts) he too, would have been as Pentecostal as they come, a tongue speaking, hand raising, dancing before the Lord – man after God’s own heart – guy.
Father it is in humility that we bow our heads, and raise our hands to You, we position ourselves to declare YOU are awesome! We desire to receive from You. Our bodies were created by You and for You. As the fingerprints on our hands are unique, may our worship of You be the same.
Have a God-loving, fanatical hand raising week.
In Him, DeDe
Ps. 92:4 You thrill me Lord!
Resources: Strong’s Concordance, Vines Heb./Grk. Dictionary, Theological Wordbook of the O.T. , Complete Word Study Dictionary of the O.T. Websites: Yahoo Educational Encyclopedia, www.justfingerprints.com , Translations Referenced: KJV, NIV, NASB, NLT.