Thursday, November 05, 2009

Psalm 137

Wow, someone -- the enemy-- wants to hear our songs. Hey, maybe they like our tunes. They don't know, do they? If we can sing one of the songs of God while we're surrounded by our enemies, how powerful we will be!

Yes, we can sing the Lord's song in a strange land. We have to. No matter what the world does to us -- we have to sing the Lord's song.

They that hold us captives don't know the power of our songs.

Now, about that last line. YEAH, we gotta talk about it. Yeah, it's one of those imprecatory psalms that offend some noble folks who think anger, vengeance and spite are tacky in religious circles. Well, they don't know what it's like to have seen their little ones dashed to pieces by an enemy. So they wouldn't understand what it's like for the writer of Psalm 137 to wish the same upon his enemies.

I'm not up on Christian pacifism so I don't know how to answer it. And I'm no lover of war either. But I know the desire for revenge. And I know about singing the Lord's song in a strange land.


Psalm 137

 1By the rivers of Babylon, there we sat down, yea, we wept, when we remembered Zion.
 2We hanged our harps upon the willows in the midst thereof.
 3For there they that carried us away captive required of us a song; and they that wasted us required of us mirth, saying, Sing us one of the songs of Zion.
 4How shall we sing the LORD's song in a strange land?
 5If I forget thee, O Jerusalem, let my right hand forget her cunning.
 6If I do not remember thee, let my tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth; if I prefer not Jerusalem above my chief joy.
 7Remember, O LORD, the children of Edom in the day of Jerusalem; who said, Rase it, rase it, even to the foundation thereof.
 8O daughter of Babylon, who art to be destroyed; happy shall he be, that rewardeth thee as thou hast served us.
 9Happy shall he be, that taketh and dasheth thy little ones against the stones.
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