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Psalms 126:1 [study!]

American Standard Version (ASV 1901) [2]
— [[A Song of Ascents.]] When Jehovah brought back those that returned to Zion, We were like unto them that dream.
King James Version (KJV 1769)
— [[A Song of degrees.]] When the LORD turned again the captivity of Zion, we were like them that dream.
New American Standard Bible (NASB ©1995)
— [[A Song of Ascents.]] When the LORD brought back the captive ones of Zion, We were like those who dream.
Webster's Revision of the KJB (WEB 1833)
— [[A Song of degrees.]] When the LORD turned again the captivity of Zion, we were like them that dream.
Darby's Translation (DBY 1890)
— [[A Song of degrees.]] When Jehovah turned the captivity of Zion, we were like them that dream.
Rotherham's Emphasized Bible (EBR 1902)
— [[A Song of Ascents.]] When Yahweh brought back the captives of Zion, we were like them who dream:
Young's Literal Translation (YLT 1898)
— A Song of the Ascents. In Jehovah's turning back [to] the captivity of Zion, We have been as dreamers.
Douay-Rheims Challoner Revision (DR 1750)
— A gradual canticle. When the Lord brought back the captivity of Sion, we became like men comforted.
Original King James Bible (AV 1611) [2]
— [[A song of degrees.]] When the LORD turned againe the captiuitie of Zion: wee were like them that dreame.
Brenton Greek Septuagint (LXX, Restored Names)
— [[A Song of Degrees.]] When the Lord turned the captivity of Zion{gr.Sion}, we became as comforted ones.
Full Hebrew Names / Holy Name KJV (2008) [2] [3]
— [[A Song of degrees.]] When Yahweh turned again the captivity of Tziyyon, we were like them that dream.

Strong's Numbers & Hebrew NamesHebrew Old TestamentColor-Code/Key Word Studies
[[A Song 7892
{7892} Prime
The second form being feminine; from H7891; a song; abstractly singing.
of degrees.]] 4609
{4609} Prime
Feminine of H4608; elevation, that is, the act (literally a journey to a higher place, figuratively a thought arising), or (concretely) the condition (literally a step or grade mark, figuratively a superiority of station); specifically a climactic progression (in certain Psalms).
When Yhw יָהוֶה 3068
{3068} Prime
From H1961; (the) self Existent or eternal; Jehovah, Jewish national name of God.
turned again 7725
{7725} Prime
A primitive root; to turn back (hence, away) transitively or intransitively, literally or figuratively (not necessarily with the idea of return to the starting point); generally to retreat; often adverbially again.
<8800> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Infinitive (See H8812)
Count - 4888
(0853) Complement
Apparently contracted from H0226 in the demonstrative sense of entity; properly self (but generally used to point out more definitely the object of a verb or preposition, even or namely).
the captivity 7870
{7870} Prime
By permutation from H7725; a return (of property).
of Xiyyn צִיּוֹן, 6726
{6726} Prime
The same (regular) as H6725; Tsijon (as a permanent capital), a mountain of Jerusalem.
we were x1961
(1961) Complement
A primitive root (compare H1933); to exist, that is, be or become, come to pass (always emphatic, and not a mere copula or auxiliary).
like them that dream. 2492
{2492} Prime
A primitive root; properly to bind firmly, that is, (by implication) to be (causatively to make) plump; also (through the figurative sense of dumbness) to dream.
<8802> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Participle Active (See H8814)
Count - 5386
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Commentary

Psalms 126:1-3

_ _ Psalms 126:1-6. To praise for God’s favor to His people is added a prayer for its continued manifestation.

_ _ When the Lord, etc. — The joy of those returned from Babylon was ecstatic, and elicited the admiration even of the heathen, as illustrating God’s great power and goodness.

_ _ turned again the captivity — that is, restored from it (Job 39:12; Psalms 14:7; Proverbs 12:14). Hengstenberg translates: “When the Lord turned Himself to the turning of Zion” (see Margin), God returns to His people when they return to Him (Deuteronomy 30:2, Deuteronomy 30:3).

Matthew Henry's Commentary

Psalms 126:1-3

_ _ While the people of Israel were captives in Babylon their harps were hung upon the willow-trees, for then God called to weeping and mourning, then he mourned unto them and they lamented; but now that their captivity is turned they resume their harps; Providence pipes to them, and they dance. Thus must we accommodate ourselves to all the dispensations of Providence and be suitably affected with them. And the harps are never more melodiously tunable than after such a melancholy disuse. The long want of mercies greatly sweetens their return. Here is, 1. The deliverance God has wrought for them: He turned again the captivity of Zion. It is possible that Zion may be in captivity for the punishment of her degeneracy, but her captivity shall be turned again when the end is answered and the work designed by it is effected. Cyrus, for reasons of state, proclaimed liberty to God's captives, and yet it was the Lord's doing, according to his word many years before. God sent them into captivity, not as dross is put into the fire to be consumed, but as gold to be refined. Observe, The release of Israel is called the turning again of the captivity of Zion, the holy hill, where God's tabernacle and dwelling-place were; for the restoring of their sacred interests, and the reviving of the public exercise of their religion, were the most valuable advantages of their return out of captivity. 2. The pleasing surprise that this was to them. They were amazed at it; it came so suddenly that at first they were in confusion, not knowing what to make of it, nor what it was tending to: “We thought ourselves like men that dream; we thought it too good news to be true, and began to question whether we were well awake or no, and whether it was not still” (as sometimes it had been to the prophets) “only a representation of it in vision,” as St. Peter for a while thought his deliverance was, Acts 12:9. Sometimes the people of God are thus prevented with the blessings of his goodness before they are aware. We were like those that are recovered to health (so Dr. Hammond reads it); “such a comfortable happy change it was to us, as life from the dead or sudden ease from exquisite pain; we thought ourselves in a new world.” And the surprise of it put them into such an ecstasy and transport of joy that they could scarcely contain themselves within the bounds of decency in the expressions of it: Our mouth was filled with laughter and our tongue with singing. Thus they gave vent to their joy, gave glory to their God, and gave notice to all about them what wonders God had wrought for them. Those that were laughed at now laugh and a new song is put into their mouths. It was a laughter of joy in God, not scorn of their enemies. 3. The notice which their neighbours took of it: They said among the heathen, Jehovah, the God of Israel, has done great things for that people, such as our gods cannot do for us. The heathen had observed their calamity and had triumphed in it, Jeremiah 22:8, Jeremiah 22:9; Psalms 137:7. Now they could not but observe their deliverance and admire that. It put a reputation upon those that had been scorned and despised, and made them look considerable; besides, it turned greatly to the honour of God, and extorted from those that set up other gods in competition with him an acknowledgment of his wisdom, power, and providence. 4. The acknowledgments which they themselves made of it, Psalms 126:3. The heathen were but spectators, and spoke of it only as matter of news; they had no part nor lot in the matter; but the people of God spoke of it as sharers in it, (1.) With application: “He has done great things for us, things that we are interested in and have advantage by.” Thus it is comfortable speaking of the redemption Christ has wrought out as wrought out for us. Who loved me, and gave himself for me. (2.) With affection: “Whereof we are glad. The heathen are amazed at it, and some of them angry, but we are glad.” While Israel went a whoring from their God joy was forbidden them (Hosea 9:1); but now that the iniquity of Jacob was purged by the captivity, and their sin taken away, now God makes them to rejoice. It is the repenting reforming people that are, and shall be, the rejoicing people. Observe here, [1.] God's appearances for his people are to be looked upon as great things. [2.] God is to be eyed as the author of all the great things done for the church. [3.] It is good to observe how the church's deliverances are for us, that we may rejoice in them.

John Wesley's Explanatory Notes

Psalms 126:1

Turned — Brought the captive Israelites out of Babylon into their own land. Dream — We were so surprized and astonished.

Geneva Bible Translation Notes

Psalms 126:1

"A Song of degrees." When the LORD turned again the captivity of Zion, we were like them that (a) dream.

(a) Their deliverance was incredible and therefore took away all excuse for ingratitude.

Cross-Reference Topical ResearchStrong's Concordance
turned again:
etc. Heb. returned the returning of Zion,
Psalms 53:6 Oh that the salvation of Israel [were come] out of Zion! When God bringeth back the captivity of his people, Jacob shall rejoice, [and] Israel shall be glad.
Psalms 85:1 [[To the chief Musician, A Psalm for the sons of Korah.]] LORD, thou hast been favourable unto thy land: thou hast brought back the captivity of Jacob.
Ezra 1:1-11 Now in the first year of Cyrus king of Persia, that the word of the LORD by the mouth of Jeremiah might be fulfilled, the LORD stirred up the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia, that he made a proclamation throughout all his kingdom, and [put it] also in writing, saying, ... All the vessels of gold and of silver [were] five thousand and four hundred. All [these] did Sheshbazzar bring up with [them of] the captivity that were brought up from Babylon unto Jerusalem.
Job 42:10 And the LORD turned the captivity of Job, when he prayed for his friends: also the LORD gave Job twice as much as he had before.
Jeremiah 31:8-10 Behold, I will bring them from the north country, and gather them from the coasts of the earth, [and] with them the blind and the lame, the woman with child and her that travaileth with child together: a great company shall return thither. ... Hear the word of the LORD, O ye nations, and declare [it] in the isles afar off, and say, He that scattered Israel will gather him, and keep him, as a shepherd [doth] his flock.
Hosea 6:11 Also, O Judah, he hath set an harvest for thee, when I returned the captivity of my people.
Joel 3:1 For, behold, in those days, and in that time, when I shall bring again the captivity of Judah and Jerusalem,

we were like:

Job 9:16 If I had called, and he had answered me; [yet] would I not believe that he had hearkened unto my voice.
Mark 16:11 And they, when they had heard that he was alive, and had been seen of her, believed not.
Luke 24:11 And their words seemed to them as idle tales, and they believed them not.
Luke 24:41 And while they yet believed not for joy, and wondered, he said unto them, Have ye here any meat?
Acts 12:9 And he went out, and followed him; and wist not that it was true which was done by the angel; but thought he saw a vision.
Acts 12:14-16 And when she knew Peter's voice, she opened not the gate for gladness, but ran in, and told how Peter stood before the gate. ... But Peter continued knocking: and when they had opened [the door], and saw him, they were astonished.
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Ezr 1:1. Jb 9:16; 42:10. Ps 53:6; 85:1. Jr 31:8. Ho 6:11. Jol 3:1. Mk 16:11. Lk 24:11, 41. Ac 12:9, 14.

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