Psalm 137:9 Smashed Against Rocks

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Psalm 137:9 Smashed Against Rocks

Atheists like to attack this bible scripture one quote:

“An all loving God that commands us to smash children against the rocks, he hates children just like two bears that killed 42 children that is obvious.”

Psalm 137 NKJV

“Happy the one who takes and dashes

Your little ones against the rock!”

Please read any scripture within the context of what is being taught and not take it at face value first.

Psalm 137 is a lament for Jerusalem after the Babylonians have invaded and destroyed it. Verses 7-9 make it explicit:

7 Remember, LORD, what the Edomites did on the day Jerusalem fell. “Tear it down,” they cried, “tear it down to its foundations!” 8 Daughter Babylon, doomed to destruction, happy is the one who repays you according to what you have done to us. 9 Happy is the one who seizes your infants and dashes them against the rocks.”

This is sheer gloating on the part of the psalmist. 

So, why is it in Scripture?

The Bible can be literal but still express itself in the language of feeling. There are many scriptures that can be ripped out of their context to make a case against them. If we read the Scripture in context and then go to other Scriptures and history we find its true meaning.

Psalm 137:8-9

“O daughter of Babylon, who are to be destroyed, happy the one who repays you as you have served us! Happy the one who takes and dashes your little ones against the rock.

God is not telling Israel to smash the heads of their infants against rocks. Israel was taken captive with their children by the Babylonians in several different invasions. 

God is pronouncing judgment upon Babylon for its great sin in showing no mercy when it destroyed Jerusalem and led the Jews captive. God is stating that Babylon will be dealt in the same manner that she treated Israel (according to prophecy). The day is coming when an enemy (will rejoice in its triumph over Babylon, and will be happy in the Slaughter). It was the Medes and Persians that conquered Babylon. She was completely overtaken and ruined by these empires. And just as she rejoiced in destroying Jerusalem and Israel, God said her conquerors will rejoice in destroying her, including her innocent infants.

God is not commanding such barbaric behavior but stating what the future will be for Babylon.

This was a fulfillment of:

Isaiah 13:15-16

“Everyone who is found will be thrust through, and everyone who is captured will fall by the sword.”