Psalm 137:9

Hebrew Bible

6 May my tongue stick to the roof of my mouth, if I do not remember you, and do not give Jerusalem priority over whatever gives me the most joy. 7 Remember, O Lord, what the Edomites did on the day Jerusalem fell. They said, “Tear it down, tear it down, right to its very foundation!” 8 O daughter Babylon, soon to be devastated, how blessed will be the one who repays you for what you dished out to us. 9 How blessed will be the one who grabs your babies and smashes them on a rock.

Judith 16:4


2 For the Lord is a God who shatters wars; he sets up his camp among his people; he delivered me from the hands of my pursuers. 3 The Assyrian came down from the mountains of the north; he came with myriads of his warriors; their numbers blocked up the wadis, and their cavalry covered the hills. 4 He boasted that he would burn up my territory, and kill my young men with the sword, and dash my infants to the ground, and seize my children as booty, and take my virgins as spoil. 5 But the Lord Almighty has foiled them by the hand of a woman. 6 For their mighty one did not fall by the hands of the young men, nor did the sons of the Titans strike him down, nor did tall giants set upon him; but Judith daughter of Merari with the beauty of her countenance undid him.

 Notes and References

"... Judith 16 alludes intra-textually to Holofernes’ (Nebuchadnezzar’s) bragging that he would crush Israel’s babies against the ground. But it did not happen. Instead, Holofernes was killed and his army was crushed by the very people he thought would be crushed by him. Intertextually, these words can be related to Psalm 137, where the person who crushes the babies of Israel’s enemies against a rock is called ‘blessed’. The poet of Psalm 137 lets himself be dominated by his mounting rage and plunges into the abyss of human emotion and passion. The poet’s prayer in verse 7 moves into a direct curse in a particularly reined form in verses 8−9, namely as a word of blessing on the person who will inflict the most cruel revenge on the hated enemy. The psalm reaches a climax in verses 7−9, where Yahweh is urged to think of the evil deeds committed against his people by the Babylonians, and which must culminate in Yahweh’s judgement of them ..."

Nolte, S. P. & Jordaan, P. J. Ideology and Intertextuality: Intertextual Allusions in Judith 16 (pp. 1-9) HTS Teologiese Studies / Theological Studies 67, 2011

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