And so now God’s people were no longer in their land. And this Psalm was written when they were in Babylon. SINGING A SONG IN A STRANGE LAND PSALM 137 BY THE RIVERS OF BABYLON WE SAT AND WEPT WHEN WE REMEMBERED ZION. Such a summary may note that the Psalm was written as a result of the siege and final destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple. Psalm 137:5-6 is a self curse used for literary intensity! Maré : Psalm 137 OTE 23/1 (2010), 116-128 119 The psalm not only relates the story of a specific period in Israel’s history, but it was probably utilised in the cult as an observance of lament by the exiles. It reflects the sorrows and thoughts of one of the captives, either during the captivity itself, or shortly afterward when the memories of the terrible experience were still fresh in the psalmist's mind. Written by that faithful servant of God M. Robert Rollok. Woah. In order to post comments, please make sure JavaScript and Cookies are enabled, and reload the page. 1. Perhaps it was when David was king, or up to 500 years after. (d) Animadv. It may also have been written many years into the exile. "An Exposition upon some select Psalms of David." It reflects the sorrows and thoughts of one of the captives, either during the captivity itself, or shortly afterward when the memories of the terrible experience were still fresh in the psalmist's mind. The psalmist penned this poem while … Or let this befall me, should I so far forget Jerusalem as to strike the harp to one of the songs of Zion in a strange land: or let it forget any of its works; let it be disabled from working at all; let it be dry and withered, which, Aben Ezra says, is the sense of the word according to some; and Schultens (d), from the use of it in Arabic, renders it, let it be "disjointed", or the nerve loosened; see Job 31:22. Psalm 137 was written when many Israelites had been conquered and forced into exile to Babylon. Here are God’s people no longer in their land, no longer in their holy city, no longer in their Temple. This sets David apart from others. THERE ON THE POPLARS WE HUNG OUR HARPS FOR THERE OUR CAPTORS ASKED US FOR SONGS, OUR TORMENTORS DEMANDED SONGS OF JOY; THEY SAID, “SING US ONE OF THE SONGS IN ZION.” ... either prophetic or written in captivity. 137:5 If I forget you, O Yerushalayim. Psalm 30: A Psalm of David. How Shall We Sing the Lord ’s Song? It provides a vivid image of what life in exile must have been like. Fab. (586 BC) The people of Judah, the Southern Kingdom, were taken captive and exiled by the Babylonians. King Jeroboam actually desired to bring the nation back to the Lord, and God promised Jeroboam that if he obeyed the Law, God would bless him and his royal line. There on the poplars we hung our harps, for there our captors asked us for songs, our tormentors demanded songs of joy; they said, “Sing us one of the songs of Zion!” How can we sing the songs of the LORD while in a foreign land? We continue to, Kevin T. Bauder Old-line liberals used to argue against the virgin birth of Christ. The occasion of this psalm was the captivity of the Jews in Babylon, and the treatment they met with there; either as foreseen, or as now endured. And in both cases, it is the vast minority that actually follow God’s commands; as far as we know, most of the nation forsake the true worship of God. The notes explain some of the words with a *star by them. . Re: Psalm 137:9 - who wrote this? The latest psalm is probably (137), a song of lament clearly written during the days when the Hebrews were being held captive by the Babylonians, from about 586 to 538 B.C. Scott Aniol is the founder and Executive Director of Religious Affections Ministries. David cannot write this as the slavery in Babylon happened after the death of David. Now, however, the Hebrews found themselves in a cultural situation that was hostile to their religion and pure worship. Words in boxes are from the Bible. You see, when they were in their land, the nation of Israel existed as a theocracy, meaning that God was their ultimate ruler, and so the culture of their worship and the rest of their culture fit together perfectly under the Law of God (at least in theory!). (x) "Amnicolae salices", Ovid. Some were written at and after the Babylonish captivity, as Psalm 126:1 and Psalm 137:1. And, of course, inevitably, false worship began to permeate the nation of Israel. This is the setting for Psalm 137. Although the author of this psalm is not known, it is obvious that it was written by someone who had survived the Babylonian captivity of Jerusalem. David did not write the psalm. 0 0. l. 2. v. 110. In fact, David only wrote about half of the Psalms—73 out of all 150, to be precise (though the Latin Vulgate and Septuagint credit a … that is, to weep over the calamities of Jerusalem; which might be thought, if the songs of Zion were sung; or to pray for the restoration of her prosperity and peace; as the church of Christ may be said to be forgotten, when men forget to mourn over its breaches, and show no concern for the reparation of them; or at the death of principal persons, which they lay not to heart; or at the great decay of religion in those that survive; or at the sins of professors, and their disregard to the word and ordinances: also when they forget to pray for her happiness in general; for the good of her members in particular; and especially for her ministers, that they may have assistance and success; and for a blessing on the word and ordinances, and for the conversion of sinners; and when they forget the worship of the Lord in it, and forsake the assembling of themselves together; let my right hand forget her cunning; her skill in music, particularly in playing on the harp; see 1 Samuel 16:16; the harp was held in the left hand, and struck with the right; and that more softly or hardly, as the note required, in which was the skill or cunning of using it. Psalm 137 was written by the rivers of Babylon, where the exiled Jews wailed and lamented the destruction of the Beit Hamikdash.They wondered how they would continue to endure on foreign soil. Verse 1. A Psalm of David. “How shall we sing the Lord’s song in a foreign land?”. (a) "qui veluti in acervos nos redegerunt", Tigurine version, Grotius. Georgic. They cannot humour their proud oppressors, Psalm 137:3,4. Why We Won’t Livestream During Lockdown (Though We Could), Hoping Through the Darkness Before Dawn: “O Come, O Come, Emmanuel”, What Is an Apostle? This Psalm is wisely placed. Of little value. The psalms, including Psalm 23, were written over a period of more than two hundred years, during and after the Babylonian Exile. The melancholy captives cannot enjoy themselves, Psalm 137:1,2. By the rivers of Babylon, we sat and wept when we thought of Zion, our home, so far away. 4. They were in exile. Posted on Oct 31, 2017. Click here for instructions on how to enable JavaScript in your browser. Currently you have JavaScript disabled. which is true of literal Babylon, called the destroying mountain, Jeremiah 51:25; and of mystical Babylon, the destroyer both of the bodies and souls of men, Revelation 11:18; happy shall he be that rewardeth thee as thou hast served us; meaning Darius the Mede, as Kimchi; or rather, or however who must be added, Cyrus the Persian, as R. Obadiah; who were ordered by the Lord to retaliate her, and do as she had done to others, Jeremiah 50:15; and in so doing pronounced happy, being the Lord's shepherd, raised up in righteousness to perform his pleasure, Isaiah 44:28; and here wished success by the godly Jews. But when hit with a calamity such as the loss of a beloved one or any other sort of discomfort, people resort to praying. Stockium, p. 447. Bible Gateway passage: Psalm 22 - New Revised Standard Version First of all, David was a Judahite warrior. We are not to regard the imprecations of this Psalm in any other light than as prophetical. Explain the reasons they would have put away their musical instruments? Probable Occasion When Each Psalm Was Composed contains the Psalm, the scripture it was written after, the occasion on which it was composed, and the year. “by the rivers of Babylon we sat down and wept” written during the 70 year Babylonian captivity And pushing toward the end of Book 5. there are 8 select psalms David wrote. (i) "nudate", Vatablus, Junius & Tremellius, Piscator, Cocceius, Schmidt. To me, Psalm 137 is one of the saddest psalms written. for there our captors asked us for songs, our tormentors demanded songs of joy; they said, “Sing us … This time it wasn’t initially full-blown idolatry, but out of a pragmatic desire to keep his people from traveling to the Temple in Jerusalem, which was in the southern kingdom, Jeroboam made two gold calves in honor of Yahweh and made temples for Yahweh on the pagan high places and appointed priests who were not Levites, and God cursed him because of it. Words in brackets, ( ), are not in the *Hebrew Bible. It is clear that the 150 individual psalms were written by many different people across a period of a … Psalm 137 is the 137th psalm of the Book of Psalms, and ... "Rivers of Babylon", in part based on the opening verses of the Psalm, is a Rastafarian song written and recorded by Brent Dowe and Trevor McNaughton of the Jamaican reggae group The Melodians in 1970. His brothers did not treat him kindly when he went to bring them food while they were at the battle front (1 Samuel 17:28). It provides a vivid image of what life in exile must have been like. On occasion there is a relatively good king in the southern kingdom, but for the most part both kingdoms are characterized by false worship. The mourning of the exiles in Babylon. BACK; NEXT ; Verses 1-6. God does not tolerate false worship; because the people did not keep his commandments, God allowed the northern kingdom to be defeated by Assyria in a series of invasions until finally, in 722, Assyria completely defeated them and took the people captive. 3 For there our captors. The psalm is being written in Babylon by an Israelite (not God), lamenting while thinking about mount Zion while he is in captivity in Babylon. His son, Solomon, the wisest man on earth, built the Temple and dedicated it to the Lord in a grand festival in which God visibly displayed his presence to them. Morning Song (My Soul Gives Glory to My God) ... All metrical versions of the psalms have been written by Tim and Julie Tennent in order to provide an open source psalter for public and private worship. Historical Context The Necessity of the Incarnation, Sale On Some of Our Favorite Homeschool Curricula, The Future of Fundamentalist Education: Delivery, By the Waters of Babylon, Episode 13 now available: “Three Forms of Culture”. David cannot write this as the slavery in Babylon happened after the death of David. Commentary on Psalm 137:5-9 (Read Psalm 137:5-9) What we love, we love to think of. This may have been written shortly after the captivity ended or possibly some time into the captivity, but the early period of Israel’s captivity in Babylon is most certainly the immediate historical context of the psalm. This they said, not merely on account of their unsuitable circumstances, being in distress and affliction, and so not disposed for such work; nor as if unlawful to them, being forbidden: for, though sacrifices were not to be offered but at Jerusalem, yet songs of praise might be sung elsewhere, on proper occasions, as David did, Psalm 18:49; but as wondering at their insolence, and complaining of their cruelty and inhumanity, thus to insult them and jeer at them: or rather, because it was "the Lord's song" they required, and so sacred, and not to be sung in any place, or at any time, and in any company; which would be but casting pearls before swine, and giving that which was holy to dogs, Matthew 7:6; or it may be they required this to be done in one of their temples, and to their idols, just as these songs were sung in the temple at Jerusalem, and to the honour of Jehovah; and therefore they refused to do it: for it may be rendered, or however interpreted, "in the land of a strange god" (c); as it is by Aben Ezra, Kimchi, and Ben Melech: they required them to sing with mirth and joy, which they could not do in their present case; see Psalm 137:2. The psalm begins with the phrase, “By the waters of Babylon.” To what does this refer? This is the context for Psalm 137. (function($) {window.fnames = new Array(); window.ftypes = new Array();fnames[0]='EMAIL';ftypes[0]='email';fnames[1]='FNAME';ftypes[1]='text';fnames[2]='LNAME';ftypes[2]='text';fnames[3]='ADDRESS';ftypes[3]='address';fnames[4]='PHONE';ftypes[4]='phone';}(jQuery));var $mcj = jQuery.noConflict(true); Powered by Headway, the drag and drop WordPress theme, (c) Copyright Religious Affections Ministries, I am pleased to add a resource to the growing collection of Tune My Heart, During this time of Advent and Christmas, the church rightly turns its attention to the, Kevin T. Bauder If the ghost of Christmas past is composed of the memories of, It is the end of another great year for Religious Affections Ministries. 137. What Psalm 44 means. This verse actually gives us a lot of information. This writing is a … l. 10. In this verse, King David makes a very personal claim, that God searches David and knows David. we hung up our lyres. Background and themes. Remember, O LORD, the children of Edom in the day of Jerusalem; who said, Rase, O daughter of Babylon, who art to be destroyed; happy. They were God’s people in a strange land; they had no homes, no place for worship; they were a unique people with a unique identity, but they were aliens and strangers. When suffering, we should recollect with godly sorrow our … Two of the most well-known stories from the Old Testament are specifically meant to highlight how difficult it was for the Hebrews to worship God as he had commanded in such a pagan setting. But they lamented to you, because they knew you were still listening to their prayers. Psalm 137. Psalm 137 is in the context of the Jewish exile in Babylon (Psalm 137:1) where they had been taken as slaves after the Babylonians burned down the city of Jerusalem. "immediately the Levites said, how shall we sing the hymns of the Lord in a strange land?''. So it is very likely that the setting of this psalm—“by the waters of Babylon”—refers to their attempt to gather for worship in exile. Here I. And translated out of Latine into English by Charles Lumisden, Edinborgh, 1600, 8vo. By the rivers of Babylon, there we sat down, yea, we wept, when we remembered Zion. "my right hand forget her skill" Notice that the words "her skill" are italicized in the NASB, which means that they are not in the MT. (c) "in terra peregina, sc. 2 On the willows # 137:2 Or poplars there. yea, we wept, when we remembered Zion; they imitated the flowing stream by which they sat, and swelled it with their tears; they wept for their sins, which brought them thither; and it increased their sorrow, when they called to mind what privileges they had enjoyed in Zion, the city of their solemnities; where they had often seen the tribes of Israel bowing before and worshipping the God of Israel; the daily sacrifices and others offered up; the solemn feasts kept; the songs of Zion, sung by the Levites in delightful harmony; and, above all, the beauty of the Lord their God, his power and glory, while they were inquiring in his sanctuary: and also when they reflected upon the sad condition and melancholy circumstances in which Zion now was; the city, temple, and altar, lying in heaps of rubbish; no worship and service performed; no sacrifices offered, nor songs sung; nor any that came to her solemn feasts; see Lamentations 1:2. 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