The Emotions of Captivity in Psalm 137 Essay

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The book of Psalms contains some of the most beloved pieces of scripture across centuries and cultures of this world. Psalms have been frequently cited is sermons, devotionals, movies, poetry, and songs. Most often, Psalms are attributed to King David of the 10th century BCE. But regardless of the authorship of the different psalms, each seem to carry a special place in describing human relationships to God, to country, to friends, to enemies and more. As time has progressed, certain psalms have become favorites because of their encouraging and uplifting messages, such as the timeless Psalm 23. However, other psalms are neglected in Christian circles because of the difficulty they present in interpretation. Often, these psalms are…show more content…
For there our captors demanded of us songs, And our tormentors mirth, saying, "Sing us one of the songs of Zion." How can we sing the Lord's song in a foreign land? If I forget you, O Jerusalem, May my right hand forget her skill. May my tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth. If I do not remember you, if I do not exalt Jerusalem, above my chief joy. Remember, O Lord, against the sons of Edom the day of Jerusalem, who said, "Raze it, raze it, to its very foundation." O daughter of Babylon, you devastated one, how blessed will be the one who repays you with the recompense with which you have repaid us. How blessed will be the one who seizes and dashes your little ones against the rock. (Ps 137, NASB) It is not often that theologians can agree upon the date of authorship of a text, but Psalm 137 is an exception. It is widely accepted that this psalm was written during or shortly after the exilic waves of the Southern Kingdom during the Babylonian captivity of 597 BCE and 587 BCE , extending to 538 BCE . While no specific author is identified as the author of Psalm 137, it certainly is not King David due to the time elapse from King David’s reign and the Babylonian Captivity. The anguish described in the beginning of the Psalm paired with the vengeful remarks at the end of the Psalm, in addition to the reference to Babylon while the writer’s heart longs for Zion undoubtedly make this Psalm a description of the exile written during or shortly

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