Psalms 136 & 137: Longing for Home

Phil Matthews

30th October, 2016 ()

Bible Text: Psalm 137:1-9 ; Matthew 5:38-48 |


"By the rivers of Babylon we sat and wept..."  So begins this well-known psalm, which describes the experience of Jewish captives in Babylon during the exile from Jerusalem in the 6th Century BC.

It's a somber and challenging psalm, with some verses about judgment that are unsettling to our modern ears.  And yet it has a lot to teach us.  Just as the Jewish exiles long for home, for God and for justice, we are to long for our heavenly home. The psalmist wants to consider Jerusalem his highest joy, and if we are to prize the new Jerusalem, the city of God's mercy, above all else, there is much we can learn from his priorities.

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