Yahweh in the storms and clouds (Nah 1:3-1:3)

Beth

“Yahweh’s way is

In whirlwinds.

Yahweh’s way is

In storms.

The clouds are

The dust of his feet.”

In classical poetic language, Yahweh was described as being in the whirlwinds and the storms.  However, there was a new graphic concept that the clouds were the dust of his feet, in this 2nd letter of the Hebrew alphabet, Beth.

Silence is good (Lam 3:28-3:30)

Yod

“It is good

To sit alone

In silence,

When Yahweh

Has imposed it.

It is good

To put

One’s mouth

To the dust.

There may yet be hope.

It is good

To give one’s cheek

To the one who

Strikes you.

It is good

To be filled

With insults.”

Now this author says that is good to sit alone waiting in silence for Yahweh. It is also good to put your mouth to the dust, indicating that one has hope for the future. You should also give your cheek to the one who is hitting you, an idea mentioned later in the Christian gospels. Finally it is good to accept insults. Here there is an important element of silence, self control, and humility.   These three verses start with the Hebrew consonant letter Yod in this acrostic poem.

Abraham (Sir 44:19-44:21)

“Abraham was the great father

Of a multitude of nations.

No one has been found

Like him in glory.

He kept the law

Of the Most High.

He entered into

A covenant with him.

He certified the covenant

In his flesh.

When he was tested,

He was found faithful.

Therefore the Lord assured him

With an oath.

The nations would be blessed

Through his offspring.

He would make them

As numerous as

The dust of the earth.

He would exalt his posterity

Like the stars.

He would give them

An inheritance

From sea to sea,

From the Euphrates River

To the ends of the earth.”

It is obvious why Abraham should show up as one of the famous holy men as indicated in the stories of Genesis, chapters 12-25. Abraham was considered to be the father of many nations, not just Israel. His glory was beyond anyone else. He kept the law of the Most High God, although it was not written anywhere. There is no mention of Yahweh. However Abraham entered into a covenant with the Most High God that was sealed with his flesh, the circumcision of the foreskin of his penis. Then there was his test about obeying God, when he was asked to kill his son. Abraham proved faithful to God. Thus the Lord, or Yahweh, assured him with an oath that he would have many blessed descendants as numerous as the dust on the earth. He also promised them an inheritance of the land from the Euphrates River to the Mediterranean Sea to the ends of the earth. Wow! This was a big chunk of land.

Yahweh helps the poor (Ps 113:7-113:9)

“Yahweh raises the poor from the dust.

He lifts the needy from the ash heap.

He makes them sit with princes.

He makes them sit with the princes of his people.

He gives the barren woman a home.

He makes her the joyous mother of children.

Praise Yahweh!”

This short psalm ends with Yahweh, from his heights, raising up the poor from the dust. He lifted the needy from the ash heaps. He made them sit with the princes of his people. He provided the barren women with homes and children so that they could be happy. Thus we all should join in and praise Yahweh as this short psalm concludes with the phrase “praise Yahweh,” another way of saying alleluia, the Hebrew “Hallelujah.”