This section contains articles from our newsletter that we call Selah. What does that mean? Read on to find out more.
Selah...What's in a Name?
You may look at the title of this newsletter, Selah...and wonder what it means. What is the significance of the name? The word Selah (seh'-law) is a Hebrew word used in the book of Psalms to indicate pauses in the music. Perhaps you haven't thought about the fact that the Psalms are actually songs. The word Selah is derived from a word meaning to hang up and weigh in order to determine the value of a thing. Given this information, one can easily see a deeper meaning to the inclusion of the word Selah in the text of the Psalms as translated by the King James translators. After all, why didn't they just translate the word Selah as they did all of the other words? Let's look at an example of the use of the word Selah in a Psalm.
Hear my cry, O God: attend unto my prayer . From the end of the earth will I cry unto thee, when my heart is overwhelmed: lead me to the rock that is higher than I. For thou hast been a shelter for me, and a strong tower from the enemy. I will abide in thy tabernacle for ever: I will trust in the covert of thy wings. Selah Psalm 61.1-4
When we pause at this point in the scripture and think on the words we just read, we are in fact weighing them and learning their value. In effect, Selah means "pause and think on this". In the book of Luke we see that after the miraculous birth of Messiah, the word quickly spread about His birth and caused all who heard it to be amazed. But the scripture says "Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart". She may not have understood completely all that had occurred, but she thought on it, considered it, pondered it. Whether or not she realized it, Mary was practicing Selah.
It is my hope that we can, through this newsletter, share some thoughts and teachings which will help us to stop and ponder the beautiful truths of the scripture. I encourage you to submit Bible questions, comments and suggestions for this newsletter, Selah...
- Ken Swiger