In “encouraging your throat” Jefferson Vann shares an example of scriptural self-encouragement. He also explains why the Hebrew word for “soul” actually means “throat.”
Psalm 42:11 (JDV)
Why, my throat, are you melting away? Why are you in such uproar? Put your hope in God, because I will still praise him, my Savior and my God.
encouraging your throat
The Hebrew word nefesh – the word often translated “soul” in English – referred to the throat or neck, because it was believed this is where the breath came from. As such, this part of the body was often used in figures of speech for the life force, or vitality of an individual.
The psalmist was not making a theological statement, as much as a biological one. He was asking his throat why it was melting away. He felt like he was losing his life force, that he was dissolving, dying. He spoke to his own throat, commanding it to put its hope in God, and insisting that he will still praise God. He expected deliverance. God would not let him down.
Have you ever been depressed or anxious, and needed some encouragement, but it seemed there was no one to go to? Encourage your own throat. Trust God to be what he says he will be.
Lord, we choose to trust you for deliverance – from our troubles today, and for ultimate deliverance when Christ returns.
For more on the actual meaning of the word “soul,” see below: