Seek the Lord and Live
5 Hear this word that I ktake up over you in lamentation, O house of Israel:
2 “Fallen, no more to rise,
is lthe virgin Israel;
forsaken on her land,
with none to raise her up.”
3 For thus says the Lord God:
“The city that went out a thousand
shall have a hundred left,
and that which went out a hundred
shall have ten left
to the house of Israel.”
4 For thus says the Lord to the house of Israel:
m“Seek me and live;
5 but do not seek nBethel,
and do not enter into nGilgal
or cross over to oBeersheba;
for nGilgal shall surely go into exile,
and nBethel shall come to nothing.”
6 mSeek the Lord and live,
plest he break out like fire in the house of Joseph,
and it devour, with none to quench it for nBethel,
7 O qyou who turn justice to wormwood1
and cast down righteousness to the earth!
8 He who made the rPleiades and Orion,
and turns deep darkness into the morning
and sdarkens the day into night,
who tcalls for the waters of the sea
tand pours them out on the surface of the earth,
uthe Lord is his name;
9 vwho makes destruction flash forth against the strong,
so that destruction comes upon the fortress.
10 wThey hate him who reproves xin the gate,
and they yabhor him who speaks the truth.
11 Therefore because you ztrample on2 the poor
and you exact taxes of grain from him,
ayou have built houses of hewn stone,
but you shall not dwell in them;
ayou have planted pleasant vineyards,
but you shall not drink their wine.
12 For I know how many are your transgressions
and how great are your sins—
you who afflict the righteous, who btake a bribe,
and cturn aside the needy xin the gate.
13 Therefore he who is prudent will dkeep silent in such a time,
efor it is an evil time.
14 fSeek good, and not evil,
that you may live;
and so the Lord, gthe God of hosts, will be with you,
as you have said.
15 hHate evil, and love good,
and establish justice xin the gate;
iit may be that the Lord, the God of hosts,
will be gracious to the remnant of Joseph.
16 Therefore thus says the Lord, gthe God of hosts, the Lord:
“In all the squares jthere shall be wailing,
and in all the streets they shall say, ‘Alas! Alas!’
They shall call the farmers to mourning
and jto wailing those who are skilled in lamentation,
17 and in all vineyards there shall be wailing,
for kI will pass through your midst,”
says the Lord.
Let Justice Roll Down
18 Woe to you who desire lthe day of the Lord!
Why would you have the day of the Lord?
mIt is darkness, and not light,
19 nas if a man fled from a lion,
and a bear met him,
or went into the house and leaned his hand against the wall,
and a serpent bit him.
20 mIs not the day of the Lord darkness, and not light,
and gloom with no brightness in it?
21 o“I hate, I despise your feasts,
and I take no delight in your solemn assemblies.
22 pEven though you offer me your burnt offerings and grain offerings,
I will not accept them;
and the peace offerings of your fattened animals,
I will not look upon them.
23 Take away from me the noise of your songs;
to qthe melody of your harps I will not listen.
24 But let justice roll down like waters,
and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream.
25 r“Did you bring to me sacrifices and offerings during the forty years in the wilderness, O house of Israel? 26 sYou tshall take up Sikkuth your king, and Kiyyun your star-god—your images that you made for yourselves, 27 uand I will send you into exile beyond Damascus,” says the Lord, whose name is gthe God of hosts.
Woe to Those at Ease in Zion
6 w“Woe to those who are at ease in Zion,
and to those who feel secure on xthe mountain of Samaria,
ythe notable men of zthe first of the nations,
to whom the house of Israel comes!
2 Pass over to aCalneh, and see,
and from there go to bHamath the great;
then go down to cGath of the Philistines.
dAre you better than these kingdoms?
Or is their territory greater than your territory,
3 eO you who put far away the day of disaster
fand bring near the seat of violence?
4 “Woe to those gwho lie on hbeds of ivory
gand stretch themselves out on their couches,
and eat lambs from the flock
iand calves from the midst of the stall,
5 jwho sing idle songs to the sound of the harp
and like David jinvent for themselves instruments of music,
6 kwho drink wine in bowls
and lanoint themselves with the finest oils,
but are not grieved over the ruin of Joseph!
7 mTherefore they shall now be the first of those who go into exile,
and the revelry of those who stretch themselves out shall pass away.”
8 nThe Lord God has sworn by himself, declares the Lord, the God of hosts:
“I abhor othe pride of Jacob
and hate his strongholds,
pand I will deliver up the city and all that is in it.”
9 And qif ten men remain in one house, they shall die. 10 And when one’s relative, rthe one who anoints him for burial, shall take him up to bring the bones out of the house, and shall say to him who is in the innermost parts of the house, “Is there still anyone with you?” he shall say, “No”; and he shall say, s“Silence! We must not mention the name of the Lord.”
11 For behold, the Lord commands,
and tthe great house shall be struck down into fragments,
and the little house into bits.
12 Do horses run on rocks?
Does one plow there1 with oxen?
uBut you have turned justice into vpoison
uand the fruit of righteousness into wormwood2—
13 you who rejoice in Lo-debar,3
who say, w“Have we not by our own strength
captured Karnaim4 for ourselves?”
14 “For behold, xI will raise up against you a nation,
O house of Israel,” declares the Lord, the God of hosts;
“and they shall oppress you from yLebo-hamath
to the Brook of zthe Arabah.”
7 aThis is what the Lord God showed me: behold, bhe was forming locusts when the latter growth was just beginning to sprout, and behold, it was the latter growth after the king’s mowings. 2 When they had finished eating the grass of the land, I said,
“O Lord God, please forgive!
cHow can Jacob stand?
He is so small!”
3 dThe Lord relented concerning this:
“It shall not be,” said the Lord.
4 aThis is what the Lord God showed me: behold, the Lord God was calling efor a judgment by fire, and it devoured the great deep and was eating up the land. 5 Then I said,
“O Lord God, please cease!
cHow can Jacob stand?
He is so small!”
6 dThe Lord relented concerning this:
“This also shall not be,” said the Lord God.
7 aThis is what he showed me: behold, the Lord was standing beside a wall built with fa plumb line, with a plumb line in his hand. 8 And the Lord said to me, g“Amos, what do you see?” And I said, “A plumb line.” Then the Lord said,
“Behold, I am setting fa plumb line
in the midst of my people Israel;
gI will never again pass by them;
9 hthe high places of Isaac shall be made desolate,
and the sanctuaries of Israel shall be laid waste,
and I will rise against ithe house of Jeroboam with the sword.”
10 Then Amaziah jthe priest of Bethel sent to kJeroboam king of Israel, saying, “Amos has lconspired against you in the midst of the house of Israel. The land is not able to bear all his words. 11 For thus Amos has said,
“‘Jeroboam shall die by the sword,
and mIsrael must go into exile
away from his land.’”
12 And Amaziah said to Amos, n“O seer, go, flee away oto the land of Judah, and peat bread there, and prophesy there, 13 but qnever again prophesy at Bethel, for rit is the king’s sanctuary, and it is a temple of the kingdom.”
14 Then Amos answered and said to Amaziah, s“I was1 no prophet, nor a prophet’s son, but tI was a herdsman and a dresser of sycamore figs. 15 uBut the Lord took me from following the flock, and the Lord said to me, ‘Go, prophesy to my people Israel.’ 16 vNow therefore hear the word of the Lord.
“You say, n‘Do not prophesy against Israel,
17 yTherefore thus says the Lord:
“‘Your wife shall be a prostitute in the city,
and your sons and your daughters shall fall by the sword,
and your land zshall be divided up with a measuring line;
you yourself shall die in an unclean land,
and mIsrael shall surely go into exile away from its land.’”
The Coming Day of Bitter Mourning
8 aThis is what the Lord God showed me: behold, a basket of summer fruit. 2 And he said, b“Amos, what do you see?” And I said, c“A basket of summer fruit.” Then the Lord said to me,
d“The end1 has come upon my people Israel;
I will never again pass by them.
3 eThe songs of the temple2 fshall become wailings3 in that day,”
declares the Lord God.
g“So many dead bodies!”
“They are thrown everywhere!”
4 Hear this, iyou who trample on the needy
and bring the poor of the land to an end,
5 saying, “When will jthe new moon be over,
that we may sell grain?
And kthe Sabbath,
that we may offer wheat for sale,
that we may make lthe ephah small and the shekel4 great
and deal deceitfully with false balances,
6 that we may buy the poor for msilver
and the needy for a pair of sandals
and sell the chaff of the wheat?”
7 The Lord has sworn by nthe pride of Jacob:
“Surely oI will never forget any of their deeds.
8 pShall not the land tremble on this account,
and everyone mourn who dwells in it,
qand all of it rise like the Nile,
and be tossed about rand sink again, like the Nile of Egypt?”
9 “And on that day,” declares the Lord God,
s“I will make the sun go down at noon
and darken the earth in broad daylight.
10 tI will turn your feasts into mourning
and all your songs into lamentation;
uI will bring sackcloth on every waist
uand baldness on every head;
vI will make it like the mourning for an only son
and the end of it like a bitter day.
11 “Behold, the days are coming,” declares the Lord God,
“when wI will send a famine on the land—
not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water,
xbut of hearing the words of the Lord.
12 xThey shall wander from sea to sea,
and from north to east;
they shall run to and fro, to seek the word of the Lord,
ybut they shall not find it.
13 z“In that day the lovely virgins and the young men
shall afaint for thirst.
14 Those who swear by bthe Guilt of Samaria,
and say, ‘As your god lives, O Dan,’
and, ‘As cthe Way of dBeersheba lives,’
they shall fall, and never rise again.”
The Destruction of Israel
9 I saw the Lord standing beside1 the altar, and he said:
e“Strike the capitals until ethe thresholds fshake,
gand shatter them on the heads of all the people;2
and those who are left of them I will kill with the sword;
hnot one of them shall flee away;
not one of them shall escape.
2 i“If they dig into Sheol,
from there shall my hand take them;
iif they climb up to heaven,
from there I will bring them down.
3 If they hide themselves on jthe top of Carmel,
from there I will search them out and take them;
kand if they hide from my sight at the bottom of the sea,
there I will command the serpent, and it shall bite them.
4 lAnd if they go into captivity before their enemies,
there I will command the sword, and it shall kill them;
mand I will fix my eyes upon them
for evil and not for good.”
5 The Lord God of hosts,
he who touches the earth and nit melts,
and all who dwell in it mourn,
oand all of it rises like the Nile,
oand sinks again, like the Nile of Egypt;
6 pwho builds his upper chambers in the heavens
and founds his vault upon the earth;
qwho calls for the waters of the sea
and pours them out upon the surface of the earth—
rthe Lord is his name.
7 “Are you not like sthe Cushites to me,
O people of Israel?” declares the Lord.
t“Did I not bring up Israel from the land of Egypt,
and uthe Philistines from vCaphtor and the Syrians from wKir?
8 Behold, xthe eyes of the Lord God are upon the sinful kingdom,
and I will destroy it from the surface of the ground,
yexcept that I will not utterly destroy the house of Jacob,”
declares the Lord.
9 “For behold, I will command,
zand shake the house of Israel among all the nations
as one shakes with a sieve,
but no pebble shall fall to the earth.
10 All the sinners of my people shall die by the sword,
who say, a‘Disaster shall not overtake or meet us.’
The Restoration of Israel
11 “In that day bI will raise up
the booth of David that is fallen
and repair its breaches,
and raise up its ruins
and rebuild it as in the days of old,
12 cthat they may possess the remnant of Edom
and dall the nations who are called by my name,”3
declares the Lord who does this.
13 “Behold, the days are coming,” declares the Lord,
e“when the plowman shall overtake the reaper
and the treader of grapes him who sows the seed;
fthe mountains shall drip sweet wine,
and all the hills shall flow with it.
14 gI will restore the fortunes of my people Israel,
and hthey shall rebuild the ruined cities and inhabit them;
ithey shall plant vineyards and drink their wine,
and they shall make gardens and eat their fruit.
15 jI will plant them on their land,
kand they shall never again be uprooted
out of the land lthat I have given them,”
says the Lord your God.