Amos 3

Amos Illustration

Amos

The words of Amos, who was among the ashepherds1 of bTekoa, which he saw concerning Israel cin the days of dUzziah king of Judah and in the days of eJeroboam the son of Joash, king of Israel, two years2 before fthe earthquake.

Judgment on Israel's Neighbors

And he said:

gThe Lord roars from Zion

and utters his voice from Jerusalem;

hthe pastures of the shepherds mourn,

and the itop of jCarmel withers.

Thus says the Lord:

kFor three transgressions of lDamascus,

and for four, lI will not revoke the punishment,3

because they have threshed mGilead

with threshing sledges of iron.

nSo I will send a fire upon the house of oHazael,

and it shall devour the strongholds of oBen-hadad.

I will pbreak the gate-bar of lDamascus,

and cut off the inhabitants from the Valley of qAven,4

and him who holds the scepter from rBeth-eden;

and the people of sSyria shall go into exile to tKir,

says the Lord.

Thus says the Lord:

kFor three transgressions of uGaza,

and for four, I will not revoke the punishment,

because vthey carried into exile a whole people

to deliver them up to Edom.

So I will send a fire upon the wall of uGaza,

and it shall devour her strongholds.

I will cut off the inhabitants from wAshdod,

and him who holds the scepter from Ashkelon;

I will turn my hand against Ekron,

and the remnant of the Philistines shall perish,

says the Lord God.

Thus says the Lord:

kFor three transgressions of xTyre,

and for four, I will not revoke the punishment,

because they delivered up a whole people to Edom,

and did not remember the covenant of brotherhood.

10  So I will send a fire upon the wall of xTyre,

and it shall devour her strongholds.

11 Thus says the Lord:

kFor three transgressions of yEdom,

and for four, I will not revoke the punishment,

ybecause he pursued his brother with the sword

zand cast off all pity,

aand his anger tore perpetually,

aand he kept his wrath forever.

12  So I will send a fire upon bTeman,

and it shall devour the strongholds of cBozrah.

13 Thus says the Lord:

kFor three transgressions of the dAmmonites,

and for four, I will not revoke the punishment,

because ethey have ripped open pregnant women in fGilead,

that they might enlarge their border.

14  So I will kindle a fire in the wall of gRabbah,

hand it shall devour her strongholds,

with shouting on the day of battle,

hwith a tempest in the day of the whirlwind;

15  and itheir king shall go into exile,

he and his princes5 together,

says the Lord.

Thus says the Lord:

kFor three transgressions of jMoab,

and for four, I will not revoke the punishment,1

because khe burned to lime

the bones of the king of Edom.

So I will send a fire upon Moab,

and it shall devour the strongholds of lKerioth,

and Moab shall die amid uproar,

amid shouting and the sound of the trumpet;

mI will cut off the ruler from its midst,

and will kill mall its princes2 with him,

says the Lord.

Judgment on Judah

Thus says the Lord:

nFor three transgressions of Judah,

and for four, I will not revoke the punishment,

because othey have rejected the law of the Lord,

and have not kept his statutes,

but ptheir lies have led them astray,

those after which their fathers walked.

So qI will send a fire upon Judah,

and it shall devour the strongholds of Jerusalem.

Judgment on Israel

Thus says the Lord:

nFor three transgressions of Israel,

and for four, I will not revoke the punishment,

because rthey sell the righteous for ssilver,

and the needy for a pair of sandals

those who trample the head of the poor tinto the dust of the earth

and uturn aside the way of the afflicted;

va man and his father go in to the same girl,

so that my holy name is profaned;

they lay themselves down beside every altar

on garments wtaken in pledge,

and in the house of their God they drink

the wine of those who have been fined.

Yet xit was I who destroyed the Amorite before them,

ywhose height was like the height of the cedars

and who was as strong as the oaks;

zI destroyed his fruit above

and his roots beneath.

10  aAlso it was I who brought you up out of the land of Egypt

band led you forty years in the wilderness,

xto possess the land of the Amorite.

11  And I raised up some of your sons for prophets,

and some of your young men for cNazirites.

Is it not indeed so, O people of Israel?

declares the Lord.

12  But you made the Nazirites ddrink wine,

and commanded the prophets,

saying, eYou shall not prophesy.

13  Behold, I will press you down in your place,

as a cart full of sheaves presses down.

14  fFlight shall perish from the swift,

fand the strong shall not retain his strength,

gnor shall the mighty save his life;

15  he who handles the bow shall not stand,

and he who is hswift of foot shall not save himself,

inor shall he who rides the horse save his life;

16  and he who is stout of heart among the mighty

shall flee away naked in that day,

declares the Lord.

Israel's Guilt and Punishment

jHear this word that the Lord has spoken against you, O people of Israel, against the whole family that I brought up out of the land of Egypt:

kYou only have I known

of all the families of the earth;

ltherefore I will punish you

for all your iniquities.

Do two walk together,

unless they have agreed to meet?

Does a lion roar in the forest,

when he has no prey?

Does a young lion cry out from his den,

if he has taken nothing?

Does a bird fall in a snare on the earth,

when there is no trap for it?

Does a snare spring up from the ground,

when it has taken nothing?

mIs a trumpet blown in a city,

and the people are not afraid?

nDoes disaster come to a city,

unless the Lord has done it?

For the Lord God does nothing

owithout revealing his secret

to his servants the prophets.

The lion has roared;

who will not fear?

pThe Lord God has spoken;

who can but prophesy?

Proclaim to the strongholds in qAshdod

and to the strongholds in the land of Egypt,

and say, Assemble yourselves on rthe mountains of Samaria,

and see the great tumults within her,

and sthe oppressed in her midst.

10  They do not know how to do right, declares the Lord,

tthose who store up violence and robbery in their strongholds.

11 Therefore thus says the Lord God:

uAn adversary shall surround the land

and bring down1 your defenses from you,

and vyour strongholds shall be plundered.

12 Thus says the Lord: wAs the shepherd rescues from the mouth of the lion two legs, or a piece of an ear, xso shall the people of Israel ywho dwell in Samaria be rescued, with the corner of a couch and part2 of a bed.

13  Hear, zand testify against the house of Jacob,

declares the Lord God, athe God of hosts,

14  that on the day I punish Israel for his transgressions,

bI will punish the altars of Bethel,

and cthe horns of the altar shall be cut off

and fall to the ground.

15  dI will strike ethe winter house along with fthe summer house,

and gthe houses of ivory shall perish,

and the great houses3 shall come to an end,

declares the Lord.

Hear this word, hyou cows of Bashan,

who are ion the mountain of Samaria,

jwho oppress the poor, jwho crush the needy,

who say to your husbands, Bring, that we may drink!

kThe Lord God has sworn by his holiness

that, behold, the days are coming upon you,

lwhen they shall take you away with hooks,

leven the last of you with fishhooks.

mAnd you shall go out through the breaches,

each one straight ahead;

and you shall be cast out into Harmon,

declares the Lord.

nCome to Bethel, and transgress;

to oGilgal, and multiply transgression;

nbring your psacrifices every morning,

your tithes every three days;

offer a sacrifice of thanksgiving of qthat which is leavened,

and proclaim rfreewill offerings, publish them;

sfor so you love to do, O people of Israel!

declares the Lord God.

Israel Has Not Returned to the Lord

I gave you cleanness of teeth in all your cities,

and tlack of bread in all your places,

uyet you did not return to me,

declares the Lord.

I also vwithheld the rain from you

when there were yet three months to the harvest;

wI would send rain on one city,

and send no rain on another city;

one field would have rain,

and the field on which it did not rain would wither;

so two or three cities xwould wander to another city

to drink water, and would not be satisfied;

uyet you did not return to me,

declares the Lord.

yI struck you with blight and mildew;

your many gardens and your vineyards,

your fig trees and your olive trees zthe locust devoured;

uyet you did not return to me,

declares the Lord.

10  I sent among you a pestilence aafter the manner of Egypt;

I killed your young men with the sword,

and bcarried away your horses,1

and cI made the stench of your camp go up into your nostrils;

uyet you did not return to me,

declares the Lord.

11  I overthrew some of you,

das when God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah,

and you were eas a brand2 plucked out of the burning;

uyet you did not return to me,

declares the Lord.

12  Therefore thus I will do to you, O Israel;

because I will do this to you,

prepare to meet your God, O Israel!

13  For behold, fhe who forms the mountains and creates the wind,

and gdeclares to man what is his thought,

hwho makes the morning darkness,

and itreads on the heights of the earth

jthe Lord, the God of hosts, is his name!

Seek the Lord and Live

Hear this word that I ktake up over you in lamentation, O house of Israel:

Fallen, no more to rise,

is lthe virgin Israel;

forsaken on her land,

with none to raise her up.

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.

For thus says the Lord to the house of Israel:

mSeek me and live;

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.

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,

O qyou who turn justice to wormwood1

and cast down righteousness to the earth!

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;

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  oI 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 rDid 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-godyour 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.