Tanak Foundations-Concepts in Amos-Chapter 1

The book of Amos was written by Amos (to lift a burden), who was a shepherd and a dresser of trees. He prophesied about 750 BC and prophesied for a short time. He was from Judah and lived in Tekoa, which is about 12 miles south of Jerusalem. He prophesied in the northern kingdom for a while during the second half of the reign of Jeroboam II (785-744 BC), king of Israel, and during the reign of Uzziah (780-740 BC, king of Judah.

Amos is an eighth-century BC prophet so his prophecies allude to events in the first three and half years of the birth-pains. He speaks of the day of the Lord, but this period is not a vindication of Israel, as some believe. But it is an assertion of God’s moral character against those who have repudiated him. Amos is sent by Yehovah to the north to speak to the king about justice.

Amos 1.1-15 tells us about the sins and judgment on other nations

v 1…The words of Amos, who was among the shepherders (just one of the shepherds) from Tekoa, which he envisioned (saw) in visions concerning Israel (the ten northern tribes) in the days of Uzziah king of Judah, and in the days of Jeroboam son of Joash, king of Israel, two years before the earthquake (when Uzziah was struck by leprosy and the Temple was torn-Zech 14.5).

v 2…And he (Amos) said, “The Lord (Yehovah) roars from Zion and from Jerusalem (the Temple) he utters his voice (in judgment against Israel); and the shepherds pasture grounds mourn, and the summit of Carmel dries up.”

v 3…Thus says the Lord, “For three transgressions of Damascus, and for four (this is going to be a rhetorical technique which means Damascus, or any offender, is guilty of numerous offenses. From 1.3 to 2.3 God begins with the enemies of Israel, and he is judging the “other guy.” But then he will judge Israel and they will try to silence Amos in 7.10-17), I will not revoke (withdraw its punishment), because they threshed (attacked) Gilead (in the Golan Heights today) with implements of sharp iron (their cruelty foretold by Elisha in 2 Kings 8.12).

v 4…So I will send fire upon the house of Hazael (Yehovah’s judgment upon his descendants), and it will consume the citadels of Ben-hadad (the name given to the kings of Syria).

v 5…I will also break the gate bar of Damascus (this bar kept the gates closed) and cut off the inhabitant from the valley of Aven (of an idol worshiped there-1 Kings 20.23), and him who holds the scepter from Beth-Eden, so the people of Syria will go exiled to Kir,” declares the Lord (this was fulfilled when Assyria conquered Damascus02 Kings 16.9).

v 6…Thus says the Lord, “For three transgression of Gaza (Philistines) and for four (idiom meaning they were guilty of numerous offenses) I will not revoke (withdraw its punishment), because they deported an entire population to deliver it up to Edom (they carried away the possessions found in the house of Jehoram king of Judah, and all his sons and wives. Not one son was left but the youngest-2 Chr 21.16-17. Edom would mistreat their captives).

v 7…So I will send fire upon the wall of Gaza, and it will consume her citadels.

v 8…I will also cut off the inhabitant of Ashdod, and him who holds the scepter from Ashkelon; I will even unleash my power on Ekron, and the remnant of the Philistines will perish,” says the Lord God (all the other towns and cities belonging to them-probably fulfilled in the times of the Maccabees).

v 9…Thus says the Lord, “For three transgressions of Tyre and for four (an idiom for numerous transgressions) I will not revoke (withdraw its punishment), because they delivered up an entire population to Edom (Israelites who fled to them) and did not remember the covenant of brotherhood (that Hiram made with David and Solomon-2 Sam 5.11; 1 Kings 5.2-6, 15-18, 9.11-14-no king of Israel or Judah made war on Phoenicia, but later they sold Israelites to others).

v 10…So I will send fire upon the wall of Tyre and it will consume her citadels (done by Nebuchadnezzar and later Alexander the Great).”

v 11…Thus says the Lord, “For three transgressions of Edom and for four (an idiom for numerous transgressions) I will not revoke (withdraw its punishment), because he pursued his brother with the sword (he never forgave Jacob), while he stifled his compassion; his anger also tore continually, and he maintained his fury forever.

v 12…So will send fire upon Teman (this city was near Petra and done by Nebuchadnezzar) and it will consume the citadels of Bozrah (sheepfold).”

v 13…Thus says the Lord, “For three transgressions of the sons of Ammon and for four (an idiom for numerous transgressions) I will not revoke (withdraw its punishment), because they ripped open the pregnant women of Gilead (very cruel and frequently done by enemies-2 Kings 15.16) in order to enlarge their border (taking the territory of Reuben, Gad, and Manasseh east of the Jordan).

v 14…So I will kindle a fire in Rabbah (the capital), and it will consume her citadels amid war cries on the day of battle and a storm (whirlwind) on the day of tempest (judgment of God-Jer 49.2).

v 15…Their king will go into exile (Baalis, and he was an accomplice to the murder of Gedaliah in Jer 40.14-was taken by Babylon), he and his princes together,” says the Lord

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Tying into the New Testament

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