By the rivers of Babylon, there we sat down, yea, we wept, when we remembered Zion.
A. M. cir. 3463. B.C. cir. 541. (Title.) The author of this beautiful and affecting elegy is unknown, but the occasion is evident; and it was most probably composed during, or near the close of, the captivity
We hanged our harps upon the willows in the midst thereof.
Willows were so plentiful at Babylon, on the banks of the Euphrates, that Isaiah calls it "the brook or river of willows."
For there they that carried us away captive required of us a song; and they that wasted us required of us mirth, saying, Sing us one of the songs of Zion.
Heb. the words of a song. wasted us. Heb. laid us on heaps.
the songs of Zion
How shall we sing the LORD'S song in a strange land?
Heb. land of a stranger.
If I forget thee, O Jerusalem, let my right hand forget her cunning.
let my right
If I do not remember thee, let my tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth; if I prefer not Jerusalem above my chief joy.
let my tongue
if I prefer
my chief joy
Heb. the head of my joy.
Remember, O LORD, the children of Edom in the day of Jerusalem; who said, Rase it, rase it, even to the foundation thereof.
Heb. make bare.
O daughter of Babylon, who art to be destroyed; happy shall he be, that rewardeth thee as thou hast served us.
Heb. wasted. happy.
etc. Heb. recompenseth unto thee thy deed which thou didst unto us.
Happy shall he be, that taketh and dasheth thy little ones against the stones.
Heb. the rock.