Concluding Hymn of Praise.
The last Hallelujah Psalm is a fitting doxology for the whole Book of Psalms, proclaiming the place, theme, mode, and extent of God’s praise. V. 1. Praise ye the Lord! Praise God in His Sanctuary, in the places set aside for His worship here on earth, no matter where they may be; praise Him in the firmament of His power, which was considered the foundation of the heavens. Earthly and heavenly places of dwelling and worship are mentioned together to indicate the universal extent of God’s worship. V. 2. Praise Him for His mighty acts, the miraculous exhibitions of His creative power; praise Him according to His excellent greatness, or “abundance of greatness,” the absolute and limitless manifestation of His attributes. V. 3. Praise Him with the sound of the trumpet, or cornet, as used by the Jews to announce religious assemblies, Num. 10, 1-10; praise Him with the psaltery, a kind of lute, and harp, or zither. V. 4. Praise Him with the timbrel, a form of tambourine, and dance, rather, the pipe; praise Him with stringed instruments and organs, the latter being a series of graduated pipes used by shepherds. V. 5. Praise Him upon the loud cymbals, or castanets; praise Him upon the high-sounding cymbals, the larger form, with deeper and fuller tones. Musical instruments of every kind, wood instruments, string instruments, and instruments of percussion - a full orchestra is needed if one would even attempt adequately to sing the praises of Jehovah. V. 6. Let everything that hath breath praise the Lord, all living beings joining with their voices to proclaim the glory of His name. Praise ye the Lord! “There is nothing in the Psalter more majestic or more beautiful than this brief, but most significant finale, in which solemnity of tone predominates, without, however, in the least disturbing the exhilaration which the close of the Psalter intended to produce, as if in emblematical allusion to the triumph which awaits the Church and all its members when, through much tribulation, they shall enter into rest.”