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The Song of Our Captivity

137 Along the banks of Babylon’s rivers
    we sat as exiles, mourning our captivity,
    and wept with great love for Zion.
Our music and mirth were no longer heard, only sadness.
    We hung up our harps on the willow trees.
Our captors tormented us, saying, “Make music for us and
    sing one of your happy Zion-songs!”
But how could we sing the song of the Lord
    in this foreign wilderness?
May my hands never make music again
    if I ever forget you, O Jerusalem.
May I never be able to sing again if I fail to honor Jerusalem supremely!
And Lord, may you never forget
    what the sons of Edom did to us, saying,
    “Let’s raze the city of Jerusalem and burn it to the ground!”[a]
Listen, O Babylon, you evil destroyer!
    The one who destroys you will be rewarded above all others.
    You will be repaid for what you’ve done to us.
Great honor will come to those who destroy you and your future,
    by smashing your infants against the rubble of your own destruction.


  1. 137:7 The Hebrew text reads “Strip her [Jerusalem] naked!”

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