Psalm 137

Psalm 137

A Psalm of Anger and Wrathful Thoughts


The psalmist has been through

a terrible, traumatizing event that went on and on.

He lived through

Babylon taking captive God's people in Jerusalem.

He lived through being a slave in Babylon.


The psalmist is angry, bitter, and resentful.

I hope that

no one reading this page

has experienced such horror. 


One of the reasons that God put this psalm in the Bible

is to show us

that we can be

totally open with God.

We can say anything to him.

We can vent our most terrible thoughts and emotions.



the appropriate place

to work through

our hurts and wounds from others

- and our issues from our own personal sins -

is by

being open and transparent before God.

God wants us to share our

deepest, darkest thoughts and emotions.

Only through God's guidance

can we truly get healed.


Introduction to Psalm 137

History of this Psalm

Here are

the events that led to this Psalm

The people of God

living in the area of Jerusalem

were being rebellious to God.

They were continually rejecting the Word of God. 

They were continually practicing the kinds of serious sins

that leads to God's judgment.


After God's many attempts to call them to repentance,

he lifted his shield of protection


allowed the Babylonians

to capture them and take them to Babylon as slaves.


This rebellious stance of the heart

and lifestyle

had happened before.

God had warned his people to stay true to God

from the time of Moses to this man's day.


God always reached out to the wicked and told them that what they were doing was dangerous.

He sent prophets to warn them.

God told them not to causally cross the border into
terrible sin and rebellion.


From the time of Moses,

God promised to protect and bless the Hebrew people


they would be dedicated to him.

For Example: Deuteronomy 7:12

Moses and the people of God promised to be true to God.


most of them became rebellious instead....

This cycle of

repentance and rebellion

was seen

over and over through the generations.


Here is the pattern

that the Jewish people

went through over and over...

God gives truth >

The people walk in it >

The people rebel from it >

God sends prophets to preach repentance >

The majority harden their heart >

God sends judgment >

The people repent >

God gives truth ..... and the pattern starts again.


Daniel 9:1-12 - Here Daniel is praying to God about the wickedness of all of the people of God.

Isaiah 46:8-9 - God warns the people through the prophet Isaiah -
 “Don’t forget this, O guilty ones. And don’t forget the many times I clearly told you what was going to happen in the future. For I am God—I only—and there is no other like me.

We see "the pattern" in Psalm 107. 

Proverbs 1:23 AMP - God is calling out to wayward people to hear his rebuke and repent -  so God can bless them. See below.

God says...


you will turn

and pay attention to my rebuke,

Behold, I  [Wisdom]  will pour out my spirit on you;

I will make my words known to you.

Proverbs 1:23 AMP



Often we see - 

sinful people

who refuse to follow their Creator,

blame God when judgment comes.

The smart ones change their mind and repent.


Click here for understanding of how God deals with people who have no knowledge of God and his commands.



that pattern

and the judgment that results



was going on

when the

psalmist and his town

were captured.


The psalmist

had seen horrible things during the capture.

Homes and buildings destroyed.

People violently treated and injured.

Some people were murdered.

Even babies were murdered in front of his eyes.

Then he taken far away to Babylon.

There he and the others were tormented and taunted


The psalmist gives one specific example of the mental abuse.

They were forced to sing "happy" sounding songs

for their captors. 


This man
and his family and friends were
broken, shattered, traumatized people.

The result for this man was anger, bitterness, and resentment. 

God allowed the Babylonians

to capture the people.

Note -

God did not approve of the brutality

of the Babylonians.

Here is a short video

on Psalm 137.

The sound begins at 6 seconds.

The most difficult verse to read


verse 9.

Happy shall he be, that taketh and dasheth
thy little ones against the stones.


Hearing about brutality to babies

makes us want to turn away from this psalm.



the word "happy"



that the psalmist

was wanting this brutality

as revenge for what was done to the Jewish babies,

makes us

shudder and recoil in disbelief.


Why  would  God  put  this  in  the  Bible?

I previously stated my idea of the main reason,

which is to

encourage open communication with God.

Here are some

thoughts from others. 


Psalm 137 Thoughts

The following is from an

Anonymous Youtube Commenter

speaking about this Psalm...

The Psalms deal with the


of the human experience -

ALL of the emotional ups & downs.

It's not intended to be a strict instruction manual

for how we ought to conduct ourselves.

Nor is it necessarily sanctioning

the emotions it chronicles.

But there is a sense in which

God HONORS the Psalmist's



over the genuine anguish of the human condition...

As long as, at the end of it all,

"we yet put our hope in God."



a video sharing on

verse 9.

Note that

at the beginning of this video,

there are

comments from



which are placed in the video

to show us

how the world tries to use this verse against God.


I did not listen to the two sermons that were suggested.

With the true depth of horror

that the psalmist is feeling in verses 8 - 9,

we realize that nothing is off the table

while communicating with God.

* * * 

God wants us to be completely open with him.

* * * 

No matter how dark and evil your thoughts are,

God can handle it.

No matter what sin

you have done or thought about -

God can forgive that sin and

cleanse that sin


make you whole. 


God wants to transform us.

For example

One of my favorite Christian speakers (now deceased)


Ben Kinchlow.

Years ago as I was reading his book

Plain Bread,

I came across a story that happened to him before he was saved...

Ben had a terrible temper,

and one day

he was violently angry at a man.

He headed over to that man's house to kill him.

The only reason Ben didn't kill the man

was because

the man wasn't home.


after Ben got saved,

he was like a big teddy bear. 

God can handle your sin. 

Come to God and allow him to forgive you and help you.


If God

can can handle the psalmist's words in verse 9,

and he can

then he can handle your innermost thoughts and emotions.

The only way to deal with your sins

and feel whole again

is to come clean

with God.


Next is a video

related to

Psalm 137.

The Heart of Daniel


prayed for 

the sins of his people. 

Yahweh - is a Hebrew word for God. 

I endorse this video but not every video that this speaker does.



The video above

often refers

to the fact that

Christians disagree with each other


the details of the end times.

The end time Scriptures are not totally clear.


Our last video

is commemorating 

Psalm 137

and the

sad songs of the Jews

who were captives in Babylon.


Let's learn the lessons of this Psalm.

The song is called

Bring Us Back

(to Jerusalem)

Recorded at The Tower of David in Jerusalem

In Conclusion of this page...

God is Love.

Part of the Love of God

is the eventual

Judgment of Sin.


God calls out

for everyone to come home to the arms of God


the final judgment of sin comes

at our death.


Hebrews 3:15 TLB


But now is the time.

Never forget the warning,

Today if you hear God’s voice speaking to you,

do not harden your hearts against him,

as the people of Israel did

when they rebelled against him in the desert.”


God bless you.

Jump to the top of Psalm 137

Psalm 137 presented June 2023.

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