AMOS PROPHESIED around 800 bc. The nation of Israel was relatively prosperous, luxury and idolatry had turned the people away from their God. As a consequence they were threatened by invasions from the Assyrians and Babylonians in the north.

Judgements on the Nations

Amos predicted God’s judgements on the neighbouring nations of Syria, Philistia, Tyre, Edom, Ammon and Moab. But he also foretold God’s judgements on His own people—first on the kingdom of Israel, then on Judah.

We can expect an echo of these events in the last days, when the Middle East is again invaded from the north (as foretold for example in Ezekiel 35–39).

Various symbols are employed:

Locusts (7:1–3): these symbolised the coming invasions by Assyria and Babylon (the picture is similar in Joel 1 & 2).

Fire (7:4–6): indicated that the judgements would be severe—for the cleansing of Israel.

Plumbline (7:7–9): Israel was not upright before God. They needed a plumbline (a plumbline is a string with a weight on the end which is used for checking whether a wall is vertical).The plumbline is the Divine standard, as shown later by Jesus Christ.

Summer Fruit (chapter 8): Just as the fruits in the basket were ripe, so Israel was ripe for judgement!

Norman Owen

By kind permission of ‘The Christadelphian’

Some interesting links with other parts of the Bible

 Amos 1:2—see Joel 3:16.➤

Amos 5:8—see Job 38:31.

Amos 9:14—see Jeremiah 30:3. ➤

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