Psalm 137

An Experience of the Captivity.

137 By the rivers of Babylon,
There we [captives] sat down and wept,
When we remembered Zion [the city God imprinted on our hearts].
On the willow trees in the midst of Babylon
We hung our harps.
For there they who took us captive demanded of us a song with words,
And our tormentors [who made a mockery of us demanded] amusement, saying,
“Sing us one of the songs of Zion.”

How can we sing the Lord’s song
In a strange and foreign land?
If I forget you, O Jerusalem,
Let my right hand forget [her skill with the harp].
Let my tongue cling to the roof of my mouth
If I do not remember you,
If I do not prefer Jerusalem
Above my chief joy.(A)

Remember, O Lord, against the sons of Edom,
The day of [the fall of] Jerusalem,
Who said “Down, down [with her]
To her very foundation.”
O daughter of Babylon, you devastator,
How blessed will be the one
Who repays you [with destruction] as you have repaid us.(B)
How blessed will be the one who seizes and dashes your little ones
Against the rock.

Cross references

  1. Psalm 137:6 : Ezek 3:26
  2. Psalm 137:8 : Is 13:1-22; Jer 25:12, 13

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