A basket of ripe fruit
This is what the Sovereign Lord showed me: a basket of ripe fruit. ‘What do you see, Amos?’ he asked.
‘A basket of ripe fruit,’ I answered.
Then the Lord said to me, ‘The time is ripe for my people Israel; I will spare them no longer.
‘In that day,’ declares the Sovereign Lord, ‘the songs in the temple will turn to wailing.[a] Many, many bodies – flung everywhere! Silence!’
Hear this, you who trample the needy
and do away with the poor of the land,
‘When will the New Moon be over
that we may sell grain,
and the Sabbath be ended
that we may market wheat?’–
skimping on the measure,
boosting the price
and cheating with dishonest scales,
buying the poor with silver
and the needy for a pair of sandals,
selling even the sweepings with the wheat.
The Lord has sworn by himself, the Pride of Jacob: ‘I will never forget anything they have done.
‘Will not the land tremble for this,
and all who live in it mourn?
The whole land will rise like the Nile;
it will be stirred up and then sink
like the river of Egypt.
‘In that day,’ declares the Sovereign Lord,
‘I will make the sun go down at noon
and darken the earth in broad daylight.
I will turn your religious festivals into mourning
and all your singing into weeping.
I will make all of you wear sackcloth
and shave your heads.
I will make that time like mourning for an only son
and the end of it like a bitter day.
‘The days are coming,’ declares the Sovereign Lord,
‘when I will send a famine through the land –
not a famine of food or a thirst for water,
but a famine of hearing the words of the Lord.
People will stagger from sea to sea
and wander from north to east,
searching for the word of the Lord,
but they will not find it.
‘In that day
‘the lovely young women and strong young men
will faint because of thirst.
Those who swear by the sin of Samaria –
who say, “As surely as your god lives, Dan”,
or, “As surely as the god[b] of Beersheba lives”–
they will fall, never to rise again.’
Israel to be destroyed
I saw the Lord standing by the altar, and he said:
‘Strike the tops of the pillars
so that the thresholds shake.
Bring them down on the heads of all the people;
those who are left I will kill with the sword.
Not one will get away,
none will escape.
Though they dig down to the depths below,
from there my hand will take them.
Though they climb up to the heavens above,
from there I will bring them down.
Though they hide themselves on the top of Carmel,
there I will hunt them down and seize them.
Though they hide from my eyes at the bottom of the sea,
there I will command the serpent to bite them.
Though they are driven into exile by their enemies,
there I will command the sword to slay them.
‘I will keep my eye on them
for harm and not for good.’
The Lord, the Lord Almighty –
he touches the earth and it melts,
and all who live in it mourn;
the whole land rises like the Nile,
then sinks like the river of Egypt;
he builds his lofty palace[a] in the heavens
and sets its foundation[b] on the earth;
he calls for the waters of the sea
and pours them out over the face of the land –
the Lord is his name.
‘Surely the eyes of the Sovereign Lord
are on the sinful kingdom.
I will destroy it
from the face of the earth.
Yet I will not totally destroy
the descendants of Jacob,’
declares the Lord.
‘For I will give the command,
and I will shake the people of Israel
among all the nations
as grain is shaken in a sieve,
and not a pebble will reach the ground.
All the sinners among my people
will die by the sword,
all those who say,
“Disaster will not overtake or meet us.”
‘In that day
‘I will restore David’s fallen shelter –
I will repair its broken walls
and restore its ruins –
and will rebuild it as it used to be,
so that they may possess the remnant of Edom
and all the nations that bear my name,’[e]
declares the Lord, who will do these things.
‘The days are coming,’ declares the Lord,
‘when the reaper will be overtaken by the ploughman
and the planter by the one treading grapes.
New wine will drip from the mountains
and flow from all the hills,
and I will bring my people Israel back from exile.[f]
‘They will rebuild the ruined cities and live in them.
They will plant vineyards and drink their wine;
they will make gardens and eat their fruit.
I will plant Israel in their own land,
never again to be uprooted
from the land I have given them,’
says the Lord your God.
- Amos 9:6 The meaning of the Hebrew for this phrase is uncertain.
- Amos 9:6 The meaning of the Hebrew for this word is uncertain.
- Amos 9:7 That is, people from the upper Nile region
- Amos 9:7 That is, Crete
- Amos 9:12 Hebrew; Septuagint so that the remnant of people / and all the nations that bear my name may seek me
- Amos 9:14 Or will restore the fortunes of my people Israel