The Psalms, which are in the 19th book of the Bible, have a prophetic significance dealing with Israel for each year in the 1900s, carrying over into the 2000s. For example, Psalm 17 points to 1917, Psalm 67 points to 1967, and so on.
Biblical scholars like J.R. Church have found that many of the key events for the Jewish people and for Israel are accurately reflected by the corresponding chapter (year) in the Psalms. As you study the Psalms, please keep in mind that the Jewish years starts somewhere in our month of either March or April, so there is an overlap. This is why a few of the Psalms may seem to reference events form the previous year, of the Gregorian calendar.
Hallel (Hebrew: הלל, “Praise”) is a Jewish prayer, a verbatim recitation from Psalms 113-118, which is used for praise and thanksgiving that is recited by observant Jews on Jewish holidays. It is called “The Egyptian Hallel,” because it was chanted in the temple while the Passover lambs were being slain. It was chanted also on other festival occasions, as at Pentecost, and the feast of Tabernacles. These are the three most important feasts in the Jewish faith.
During the Jewish Passover meal of the first century, Psalms 113-114 were sung before the final meal blessing and Psalms 115-118 were sung after the final blessing. These were most probably the hymns that Jesus and his disciples sang in the context of their Passover (cf. Matthew 26:30; Mark 14:26). The theology of these songs is directly related to the theology of both the Passover and the Lord’s Supper.
These chapters are expressions of joy and faith in God, and of gratitude for salvation from their enemies. They were incorporated into the Book of Psalms by King David, and they were singled out for inclusion in Hallel because they contain the following fundamental themes of the faith of Judaism:
- the Exodus
- the Giving of the Law by God at Sinai
- the future Resurrection of the Dead
- the Coming of the Messiah
Psalms 117 is specifically to a universal call to praise, and points to the beginning of the building of the third Temple. It corresponds to the year 2017.
Praise the Lord, all nations!
Glorify Him, all peoples!
For His faithful love to us is great;
the Lord’s faithfulness endures forever.
Psalm 117 is also the shortest chapter in the Bible, and is exactly in the center of your Bible.
Psalm 118 is a beautiful Psalm of praise and this Psalm would correlate to 2018, seventy years after Israel’s rebirth and a harbinger of the last 7 years.
Psalm 118 is placed in between the shortest and the longest Psalm, making it stand out from all others. It is a picture of Christ as the beginning and the end. It is the last Hallel Psalm, and also contains the middle verse of the Bible: verse 8.
There are 1189 books in the Bible, 594 chapters before Psalm 118:8 and 594 after. If you add 594+594 you get 1188, the chapter and verse of the middle verse in the Bible: “It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man.“
Psalm 118 depicts the Ezekiel invasion, with Israel being surrounded on all sides. Verses 10-14:
“All nations surrounded me, but in the name of the LORD I will destroy them. They surrounded me, yes, they surrounded me; but in the name of the LORD I will destroy them. They surrounded me like bees; they were quenched like a fire of thorns; for in the name of the LORD I will destroy them. You pushed me violently, that I might fall, but the LORD helped me. The LORD is my strength and song, and He has become my salvation.”
Notice that “surrounds me” is mention four times, showing the attacks from the kings of the North, South, East and West. “He has become my salvation,” is in past tense, meaning it is done! Also, Psalm 118:22 speak of the future second coming when Jesus becomes the capstone, quoted by Him in Mark 12.
“The stone which the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone.”
Psalms 117 and 118 are in the center of the Bible, and reflect the center of Jewish and Christian life. It looks a lot like the Hallel is a prophetic countdown, and the Rapture happens in 2017, with the 7 year Tribulation beginning in 2018.