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FRAMEWORKS: Amos 7: Judgments, Intercession & Rebuke


Part ONE: v.1-9: Locusts, fire and a plumb-line
Part TWO: v.10-17: Amos and Amaziah


[Preliminary Comment: The first half of the chapter shows Amos receiving from the Lord two pictures of a destruction coming on Israel, brought by locusts and then fire. In each case Amos intercedes on behalf of the nation and the Lord relents [v.1-6]. But then he sees the Lord with a plumbline and the Lord explains He is assessing Israel and because of their idolatry, He will bring them down [v.7-9].

In the second half of the chapter we see a priest opposing Amos, telling the king about him, and rebuking Amos [v.10-13]. Amos simply explains why he is there [v.14,15] and then conveys a word of terrible rebuke on the priest [v.16,17], a chapter of visions, intercession, rebuke and judgment.]



Part ONE: v.1-9: Locusts, fire and a plumb-line


v.1 Destructive Picture 1: Locusts coming


v.1 This is what the Sovereign Lord showed me: he was preparing swarms of locusts after the king's share had been harvested and just as the late crops were coming up.


v.2 Their destruction makes Amos cry out, how will Israel survive?


v.2  When they had stripped the land clean, I cried out, ‘Sovereign Lord, forgive! How can Jacob survive? He is so small!'


v.3 The Lord relents


v.3  So the Lord relented.

‘This will not happen,' the Lord said.


v.4 Destructive Picture 2: Coming fire


v.4  This is what the Sovereign Lord showed me: the Sovereign Lord was calling for judgment by fire; it dried up the great deep and devoured the land.


v.5 Again Amos cries out


v.5  Then I cried out, ‘Sovereign Lord, I beg you, stop! How can Jacob survive? He is so small!'


v.6 Again the Lord relents


v.6  So the Lord relented.

‘This will not happen either,' the Sovereign Lord said.


v.7 Then Amos sees the Lord with a plumb-line


v.7  This is what he showed me: the Lord was standing by a wall that had been built true to plumb, with a plumb-line in his hand.


v.8 The Lord shares He is assessing His people and they have failed


v.8  And the Lord asked me, ‘What do you see, Amos?'

‘A plumb-line,' I replied.

Then the Lord said, ‘Look, I am setting a plumb-line among my people Israel; I will spare them no longer.


v.9 So He will destroy all the idolatry


v.9  ‘The high places of Isaac will be destroyed
    and the sanctuaries of Israel will be ruined;
    with my sword I will rise against the house of Jeroboam.'



Part TWO: v.10-17: Amos and Amaziah


v.10 The priest tells the king of Amos's words


v.10  Then Amaziah the priest of Bethel sent a message to Jeroboam king of Israel: ‘Amos is raising a conspiracy against you in the very heart of Israel. The land cannot bear all his words.


v.11 He tells of his words about destruction and exile


v.11  For this is what Amos is saying:

‘“Jeroboam will die by the sword,
    and Israel will surely go into exile,
    away from their native land.”'


v.12,13 The priest tells Amos to stop prophesying and leave


v.12  Then Amaziah said to Amos, ‘Get out, you seer! Go back to the land of Judah. Earn your bread there and do your prophesying there.

v.13  Don't prophesy any more at Bethel, because this is the king's sanctuary and the temple of the kingdom.'


v.14,15 Amos explains his calling and instructions


v.14  Amos answered Amaziah, ‘I was neither a prophet nor the son of a prophet, but I was a shepherd, and I also took care of sycamore-fig trees.

v.15  But the Lord took me from tending the flock and said to me, “Go, prophesy to my people Israel.”


v.17,18 Because of his rebuke of Amos, the priest's family will be judged


v.16  Now then, hear the word of the Lord. You say,

‘“Do not prophesy against Israel,
    and stop preaching against the descendants of Isaac.”

v.17  ‘Therefore this is what the Lord says:

‘“Your wife will become a prostitute in the city,
    and your sons and daughters will fall by the sword.
Your land will be measured and divided up,
    and you yourself will die in a pagan country.
And Israel will surely go into exile,
    away from their native land.”'



Continue to Chapter 8