Further Reflections on Confessions and Statements of Faith References
How can the worshiper not conclude with such acclamations! When God is the “overflowing source of all good” (Belgic Confession, Article 1) and when he has provided all the benefits of Christ’s atonement and makes them ours so that “they are more than enough to absolve us from our sins,” (Belgic Confession, Article 22) our hearts cry out to him with praise and adoration. Therefore, Heidelberg Catechism, Lord’s Day 52, Question and Answer 128 includes the ending doxology of the Lord’s Prayer and teaches that “your holy name, and not we ourselves, should receive all the praise, forever.” And so consistent with these thoughts, Our World Belongs to God, paragraph 2 exclaims, “Our World Belongs to God! God is King: Let the earth be glad! Christ is victor: His rule has begun! The Spirit is at work: Creation is renewed! Hallelujah! Praise the Lord!” And the Belhar Confession, Section 5 concludes: “Jesus is Lord. To the one and only God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, be the honor and the glory forever and ever.”
This song is perhaps the simplest of the many choruses that arose out of the Jesus People movement during the 1960’s and 70’s in the United States, especially in southern California. There is only one word, “Alleluia,” sung eight times, which is untranslated in every language (except from the Hebrew spelling of “Halleluia” to the Greek spelling “Alleluia”—both meaning “Praise God.” The two musical phrases are also almost identical. This humble chorus serves well to respond communally in worship to any number of reasons for praising God. In the improvisatory character of many such songs, additional verses were soon added. Such a simple song hardly needs to be written down, and certainly can be led best by someone who simply starts singing in invitation for others to join in.
Jerry Sinclair (b. 1943) began writing songs when he was a teenager in northeastern Maine. Moving to Southern California during the early days of the Jesus People Movement, he ministered with a singing group, The Chosen Ones, in various churches in the western United States, often in association with evangelists such as Arthur Blessitt. He is known especially for “Alleluia” that became known around the world. Later he became an executive of a cellular phone company and owned his own publishing business, Southern California Music.