| הַלְלוּ אֶת יְהוָה כָּל גּוֹיִם||Praise יהוה all nations|
|שַׁבְּחוּהוּ כָּל הָאֻמִּים ||congratulate him all the peoples|
|כִּי גָבַר עָלֵינוּ חַסְדּוֹ ||for his mercy has prevailed against us|
|וֶאֱמֶת יְהוָה לְעוֹלָם ||and the truth of יהוה is forever|
|הַלְלוּ יָהּ||Praise Yah|
Structurally, the psalm opens and closes with a varied pair of brackets. The opening bracket also plays a second structural role in the first of two bi-cola. Congratulate? I chose this term to stop a mindless quick read of praise or laud. It is better if it is more like 'well done, my love.' The second 'parallel' is also surprising. The reason given for congratulations is stronger than God's desire for mercy. It has prevailed - past, completed, as in the flood waters prevailing over the earth. There seems a finality in the promise of mercy that cannot be undone. This truth is faithful in all respects and in all ages. It's a bi-colon, but not a parallel of similarity, or even of tense. Instead our reason for believing can encompass what is both complete and continuing for ever.
Psalm 117:1 is picked up by Paul (Romans 15:11) as justifying his 'Gospel to the Gentiles'. I see in the Comparative Psalter (Kohlenberger) that the LXX translators chose truth rather than faithfulness for the translation of verse 2. Verse 2 alludes to Exodus 34:6. So the psalm recognizes a universal aspect of God's mercy and lovingkindness as revealed to Moses. As Luther commented somewhere, the entire Gospel is contained in the Psalter. This Psalm implies that the mercy is universally available. Paul recognizes that universal aspect of the revelation in the Scriptures as fully expressed and realized in Jesus, son of God (Romans 1:4).
This psalm has only 17 words - so we can see them all at once. There also seems to be a remarkable foreshadowing of Psalm 118 that I just noticed - only three words are shared between these two psalms (excluding the name and some shorter words) all nations, his mercy, for ever. A curious accident of my now aging algorithm for comparing psalms.
Now here are its letters in two (three) piles - Of 62 letters, only 9 are from the non-grammatical group of 11. Of the remaining 52 letters, 17 are written in grammatical roles (omitting the prepositions from the count) leaving 36, if I haven't miscounted, of the grammatical letters acting as consonants. (Green is for grammatical, Blue for the group of letters that does not play a role in forming prefixes and suffixes, and Orange for the letters of the grammatical group of 11 that are behaving like consonants in this word.)
| הַלְלוּ אֶת יְהוָה ||Praise יהוה||hallu et hashem|
|כָּל גּוֹיִם ||all nations ||col goyim|
|שַׁבְּחוּהוּ כָּל הָאֻמִּים ||congratulate him all the peoples||shavxuhu col ha'umim|
|כִּי גָבַר עָלֵינוּ חַסְדּוֹ ||for has prevailed against us his mercy||ci gavar `lenu xesedo|
|וֶאֱמֶת יְהוָה לְעוֹלָם ||and the truth of יהוה is forever||ve'emet hashem l`olam|
|הַלְלוּ יָהּ ||Praise Yah||hallu Yah|
|הַלְלוּ||Praise||2nd person plural imperative, root הלל|
|יהוה||direct object market followed by tetragrammeton|
|all as adjective|
|3rd person singular suffix הוּ following second person plural imperative, root שבח (and I cannot stay with my prodding first translation - be free in him).|
הָאֻמִּים is plural with definite article הָ and the root word is what? It's rare (Numbers 25:15, and Genesis 25:16) - it is not the usual root for people which would be with an ayin עַם. And though it looks a lot like the word in Psalm 2, וּלְאֻמִּים apparently it is distinguished by all my sources, English, Latin, and Hebrew as different. It is said to be derived from mother - so perhaps all who are born of woman.
it has prevailed
|for - acting as conjunction of purpose|
strong - towering (Net Bible) root גבר perfect third person singular
first person plural pronoun with preposition
third person singular pronoun
|and the truth of|
|Truth (LXX) preceded by connector|
with construct implied making 'the' truth
- definite of proper name
verbless clause, preposition, a word meaning to the age or forever
|closing the opening bracket|