Amos 1-5 New Revised Standard Version

<< Joel 3 | Amos 1-5 | Amos 6 >>

The Judgments on Israel's Neighbors

1 1  The words of Amos, who was among the shepherds of Tekoa, which he saw concerning Israel in the days of King Uzziah of Judah and in the days of King Jeroboam son of Joash of Israel, two years [1] before the earthquake. 2  And he said: The Lord roars from Zion, and utters his voice from Jerusalem; the pastures of the shepherds wither, and the top of Carmel dries up.

3  Thus says the Lord: For three transgressions of Damascus, and for four, I will not revoke the punishment; [2] because they have threshed Gilead with threshing sledges of iron. 4  So I will send a fire on the house of Hazael, and it shall devour the strongholds of Ben-hadad. 5  I will break the gate bars of Damascus, and cut off the inhabitants from the Valley of Aven, and the one who holds the scepter from Beth-eden; and the people of Aram shall go into exile to Kir, says the Lord. 6  Thus says the Lord: For three transgressions of Gaza, and for four, I will not revoke the punishment; [3] because they carried into exile entire communities, to hand them over to Edom. 7  So I will send a fire on the wall of Gaza, fire that shall devour its strongholds. 8  I will cut off the inhabitants from Ashdod, and the one 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. 9  Thus says the Lord: For three transgressions of Tyre, and for four, I will not revoke the punishment; [4] because they delivered entire communities over to Edom, and did not remember the covenant of kinship. 10  So I will send a fire on the wall of Tyre, fire that shall devour its strongholds. 11  Thus says the Lord: For three transgressions of Edom, and for four, I will not revoke the punishment; [5] because he pursued his brother with the sword and cast off all pity; he maintained his anger perpetually, [6] and kept his wrath [7] forever. 12  So I will send a fire on Teman, and it shall devour the strongholds of Bozrah. 13  Thus says the Lord: For three transgressions of the Ammonites, and for four, I will not revoke the punishment; [8] because they have ripped open pregnant women in Gilead in order to enlarge their territory. 14  So I will kindle a fire against the wall of Rabbah, fire that shall devour its strongholds, with shouting on the day of battle, with a storm on the day of the whirlwind; 15  then their king shall go into exile, he and his officials together, says the Lord.

2 1  Thus says the Lord: For three transgressions of Moab, and for four, I will not revoke the punishment; because he burned to lime the bones of the king of Edom. 2  So I will send a fire on Moab, and it shall devour the strongholds of Kerioth, and Moab shall die amid uproar, amid shouting and the sound of the trumpet; 3  I will cut off the ruler from its midst, and will kill all its officials with him, says the Lord. 4  Thus says the Lord: For three transgressions of Judah, and for four, I will not revoke the punishment; because they have rejected the law of the Lord, and have not kept his statutes, but they have been led astray by the same lies after which their ancestors walked. 5  So I will send a fire on Judah, and it shall devour the strongholds of Jerusalem.

The Judgment on Israel

6  Thus says the Lord: For three transgressions of Israel, and for four, I will not revoke the punishment; because they sell the righteous for silver, and the needy for a pair of sandals- 7  they who trample the head of the poor into the dust of the earth, and push the afflicted out of the way; father and son go in to the same girl, so that my holy name is profaned; 8  they lay themselves down beside every altar on garments taken in pledge; and in the house of their God they drink wine bought with fines they imposed.

9  Yet I destroyed the Amorite before them, whose height was like the height of cedars, and who was as strong as oaks; I destroyed his fruit above, and his roots beneath. 10  Also I brought you up out of the land of Egypt, and led you forty years in the wilderness, to possess the land of the Amorite. 11  And I raised up some of your children to be prophets and some of your youths to be nazirites. Is it not indeed so, O people of Israel? says the Lord. 12  But you made the nazirites drink wine, and commanded the prophets, saying, "You shall not prophesy." 13  So, I will press you down in your place, just as a cart presses down when it is full of sheaves. 14  Flight shall perish from the swift, and the strong shall not retain their strength, nor shall the mighty save their lives; 15  those who handle the bow shall not stand, and those who are swift of foot shall not save themselves, nor shall those who ride horses save their lives; 16  and those who are stout of heart among the mighty shall flee away naked in that day, says the Lord.

The Roar of the Lion

3 1  Hear 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: 2  You only have I known of all the families of the earth; therefore I will punish you for all your iniquities. 3  Do two walk together unless they have made an appointment? 4  Does a lion roar in the forest, when it has no prey? Does a young lion cry out from its den, if it has caught nothing? 5  Does a bird fall into 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? 6  Is a trumpet blown in a city, and the people are not afraid? Does disaster befall a city, unless the Lord has done it? 7  Surely the Lord God does nothing, without revealing his secret to his servants the prophets. 8  The lion has roared; who will not fear? The Lord God has spoken; who can but prophesy?

The Doom of Samaria

9  Proclaim to the strongholds in Ashdod, and to the strongholds in the land of Egypt, and say, "Assemble yourselves on Mount Samaria, and see what great tumults are within it, and what oppressions are in its midst." 10  They do not know how to do right, says the Lord, those who store up violence and robbery in their strongholds. 11  Therefore thus says the Lord God: An adversary shall surround the land, and strip you of your defense; and your strongholds shall be plundered. 12  Thus says the Lord: As the shepherd rescues from the mouth of the lion two legs, or a piece of an ear, so shall the people of Israel who live in Samaria be rescued, with the corner of a couch and part of a bed. 13  Hear, and testify against the house of Jacob, says the Lord God, the God of hosts: 14  On the day I punish Israel for its transgressions, I will punish the altars of Bethel, and the horns of the altar shall be cut off and fall to the ground. 15  I will tear down the winter house as well as the summer house; and the houses of ivory shall perish, and the great houses shall come to an end, says the Lord.

4 1  Hear this word, you cows of Bashan who are on Mount Samaria, who oppress the poor, who crush the needy, who say to their husbands, "Bring something to drink!" 2  The Lord God has sworn by his holiness: The time is surely coming upon you, when they shall take you away with hooks, even the last of you with fishhooks. 3  Through breaches in the wall you shall leave, each one straight ahead; and you shall be flung out into Harmon, says the Lord.

Israel's Failure to Profit from God's Punishments

4  Come to Bethel-and transgress; to Gilgal-and multiply transgression; bring your sacrifices every morning, your tithes every three days; 5  bring a thank offering of leavened bread, and proclaim freewill offerings, publish them; for so you love to do, O people of Israel! says the Lord God.

6  I gave you cleanness of teeth in all your cities, and lack of bread in all your places, yet you did not return to me, says the Lord. 7  And I also withheld the rain from you when there were still three months to the harvest; I would send rain on one city, and send no rain on another city; one field would be rained upon, and the field on which it did not rain withered; 8  so two or three towns wandered to one town to drink water, and were not satisfied; yet you did not return to me, says the Lord. 9  I struck you with blight and mildew; I laid waste your gardens and your vineyards; the locust devoured your fig trees and your olive trees; yet you did not return to me, says the Lord. 10  I sent among you a pestilence after the manner of Egypt; I killed your young men with the sword; I carried away your horses; and I made the stench of your camp go up into your nostrils; yet you did not return to me, says the Lord. 11  I overthrew some of you, as when God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah, and you were like a brand snatched from the fire; yet you did not return to me, says 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 lo, the one who forms the mountains, creates the wind, reveals his thoughts to mortals, makes the morning darkness, and treads on the heights of the earth- the Lord, the God of hosts, is his name!

A Call to Repentance

5 1  Hear this word that I take up over you in lamentation, O house of Israel: 2  Fallen, no more to rise, is maiden Israel; forsaken on her land, with no one to raise her up. 3  For thus says the Lord God: The city that marched out a thousand shall have a hundred left, and that which marched out a hundred shall have ten left.

4  For thus says the Lord to the house of Israel: Seek me and live; 5  but do not seek Bethel, and do not enter into Gilgal or cross over to Beer-sheba; for Gilgal shall surely go into exile, and Bethel shall come to nothing. 6  Seek the Lord and live, or he will break out against the house of Joseph like fire, and it will devour Bethel, with no one to quench it. 7  Ah, you that turn justice to wormwood, and bring righteousness to the ground! 8  The one who made the Pleiades and Orion, and turns deep darkness into the morning, and darkens the day into night, who calls for the waters of the sea, and pours them out on the surface of the earth, the Lord is his name, 9  who makes destruction flash out against the strong, so that destruction comes upon the fortress. 10  They hate the one who reproves in the gate, and they abhor the one who speaks the truth. 11  Therefore because you trample on the poor and take from them levies of grain, you have built houses of hewn stone, but you shall not live in them; you 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 take a bribe, and push aside the needy in the gate. 13  Therefore the prudent will keep silent in such a time; for it is an evil time. 14  Seek good and not evil, that you may live; and so the Lord, the God of hosts, will be with you, just as you have said. 15  Hate evil and love good, and establish justice in the gate; it may be that the Lord, the God of hosts, will be gracious to the remnant of Joseph.

16  Therefore thus says the Lord, the God of hosts, the Lord: In all the squares there shall be wailing; and in all the streets they shall say, "Alas! alas!" They shall call the farmers to mourning, and those skilled in lamentation, to wailing; 17  in all the vineyards there shall be wailing, for I will pass through the midst of you, says the Lord. 18  Alas for you who desire the day of the Lord! Why do you want the day of the Lord? It is darkness, not light; 19  as if someone fled from a lion, and was met by a bear; or went into the house and rested a hand against the wall, and was bitten by a snake. 20  Is not the day of the Lord darkness, not light, and gloom with no brightness in it?

21  I hate, I despise your festivals, and I take no delight in your solemn assemblies. 22  Even though you offer me your burnt offerings and grain offerings, I will not accept them; and the offerings of well-being of your fatted animals I will not look upon. 23  Take away from me the noise of your songs; I will not listen to the melody of your harps. 24  But let justice roll down like waters, and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream. 25  Did you bring to me sacrifices and offerings the forty years in the wilderness, O house of Israel? 26  You shall take up Sakkuth your king, and Kaiwan your star-god, your images, which you made for yourselves; 27  therefore I will take you into exile beyond Damascus, says the Lord, whose name is the God of hosts.

<< Joel 3 | Amos 1-5 | Amos 6 >>

Footnotes

[1] 1:1 Or [during two years]

[2] 1:3 Heb [cause it to return]

[3] 1:6 Heb [cause it to return]

[4] 1:9 Heb [cause it to return]

[5] 1:11 Heb [cause it to return]

[6] 1:11 Syr Vg: Heb [and his anger tore perpetually]

[7] 1:11 Gk Syr Vg: Heb [and his wrath kept]

[8] 1:13 Heb [cause it to return]

Add Another Translation