Babylon 20 Sep 2019
I read psalm 137:
By the rivers of Babylon. The Jewish people were unwilling to sing a song of worship in an unholy place. They remembered Zion. The verses 7-9 pray for a severe (very cruel) punishment for those who had treated them with contempt. My today's interest is if there are parallels to the condition of the Catholic Church in the Netherlands today.
Israel was brought to Babylon because of their sins. I am sure that most
Catholics as well struggle with sin. We may not be willing to make up with our enemy (usually nearby) and with God. We do what we like or are familiar with. We (all) struggle with criticism towards ourselves.
My unloving response.
Just as in psalm 137 I stop worshiping God and I curse my enemies. That raises the question:
What is wrong with psalm 137?
Perhaps the psalm should be understood more spiritually.
1. vs 1-3: We should not sing worships songs towards the evil one or to please some persons. (There is certainly an issue with the commercialization of worship songs ... for money)
2. vs 4-6: We should remember the place where and how we are called to live as brothers. We should dream God's dream.
3. vs 7-9: We should deny the sins that we are involved with. We should shy away from those who refuse to live (=closely relate) in brotherly love. There are many of such. Babylon may stand for cruelty and sexual immorality. I do not believe this is God's way. If something is immorality in God's opinion, it needs to be addressed. United Nations and governments are not reliable authorities in those things.
Perhaps European (EC) rules drive out the church into captivity. They set human thinking and rights above God's judgment.
Perhaps the church is unable to, or refuses to develop growth in brotherly love among their members. They set their
worship and hypocrisy above love. Hypocrisy applies where I refuse or fail to do what I preach.
Psalm 137 By the rivers of Babylon.