King James Bible
with Catholic Commentary by George Leo Haydock

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Amos 3

Judgments against Israel. (1-8) The like to other nations. (9-15)

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Judgments against Israel

1 Hear this word that the LORD hath spoken against you, O children of Israel, against the whole family which I brought up from the land of Egypt, saying,

2 You only have I known of all the families of the earth: therefore I will punish you for all your iniquities.

3 Can two walk together, except they be agreed?

4 Will a lion roar in the forest, when he hath no prey? will a young lion cry out of his den, if he have taken nothing?

5 Can a bird fall in a snare upon the earth, where no gin is for him? shall one take up a snare from the earth, and have taken nothing at all?

6 Shall a trumpet be blown in the city, and the people not be afraid? shall there be evil in a city, and the LORD hath not done it?

7 Surely the Lord GOD will do nothing, but he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets.

8 The lion hath roared, who will not fear? the Lord GOD hath spoken, who can but prophesy?

The like to other nations

9 Publish in the palaces at Ashdod, and in the palaces in the land of Egypt, and say, Assemble yourselves upon the mountains of Samaria, and behold the great tumults in the midst thereof, and the oppressed in the midst thereof.

10 For they know not to do right, saith the LORD, who store up violence and robbery in their palaces.

11 Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD; An adversary there shall be even round about the land; and he shall bring down thy strength from thee, and thy palaces shall be spoiled.

12 Thus saith the LORD; As the shepherd taketh out of the mouth of the lion two legs, or a piece of an ear; so shall the children of Israel be taken out that dwell in Samaria in the corner of a bed, and in Damascus in a couch.

13 Hear ye, and testify in the house of Jacob, saith the Lord GOD, the God of hosts,

14 That in the day that I shall visit the transgressions of Israel upon him I will also visit the altars of Bethel: and the horns of the altar shall be cut off, and fall to the ground.

15 And I will smite the winter house with the summer house; and the houses of ivory shall perish, and the great houses shall have an end, saith the LORD.

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G Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Ver. 1. Family, including all the posterity of Jacob. W. — He afterwards addresses the ten tribes in particular. S. Jer. C.

Ver. 2. Known, with love, (H.) and favoured with the law, &c. Above all, styling you my people. Ex. xix. 6. Ezec. xx. 5. C. — Visit. That is, punish. Ch. — I will treat you like my children, that I may spare you in eternity. C.

Ver. 3. Agreed? As t hey cannot do this well, so neither can man be acceptable to God, unless he keep his laws. W. — The prophet here proves his mission, intimating that if he were not inspired, he would soon be open to detection. He had been banished from Bethel. C. 7. By many similes, he shows that the event will prove the sincerity of his character, and that he cannot resist the holy spirit which is in him.

Ver. 4. Nothing? Thus, shall I inveigh against your crimes, if there were no need?

Ver. 5. Somewhat? When the prophet speaks, has he no reason? God shews that he has sent him, by inflicting the punishments which he denounces.

Ver. 6. Afraid. Yet you can hear these terrible truths without consternation! Will you therefore escape? C. — Evil. He speaks of the evil of sin, of which God is not the author. Ch. — All evil of punishment is sent by God, either to reclaim sinners or to be the beginning of sorrows, if they die impenitent. W. — You know that He rewards or punishes. If, therefore, what I foretell come to pass, do not blame me.

Ver. 7. Prophets. In vain then would you silence them. C. ii. 12, and vii. 12. He always tends to the conclusion. v. 8. C.

Ver. 9. Azotus. Sept. “Assyrians.” — Follies. Sept. “wonders.” Let you greatest enemies know what crimes you commit against yourselves (H.) and others.

Ver. 11. About, As oxen tread out corn, going round a tree. C. — Sept. “Tyre even all round, thy land shall be a desert.” Tsar means “Tyre and tribulation,” according to S. Jerom’s master. H.

Ver. 12. Ear: things of small value. Thus few even of the poor will escape the Assyrians. M. — Damascus. Some render “couch side.” But there is no proof of this being accurate. Jeroboam II. subdued Damascus, and reigned in prosperity. Who would then have thought that Israel should so soon be removed into Media? C. — Sept. “over-against the tribe of Juda, and in Damascus, priests hear,” &c. They probably left hares, (H.) “couches,” (Aquila) untranslated, and some person has substituted “priests.” S. Jer. — Only the miserable M. or fugitives escape the enemy. H.

Ver. 14. Bethel. Manahem seems to have sent one of the calves to engage Phul to come to his assistance. Osee x. 5. and 4 K. xv. 19. Salmanasar had both. Osee viii. 5. Josias afterwards defiled the profane altars. 4 K. xxiii. 15. — Horns, made of brass, which the Assyrians carried off. C. — The fairest possessions of sinners will at last perish. W.

Ver. 15. Winter. Sept. “winged house,” to keep off cold, (S. Jer.) or to give air. C. — Summer-house. The noblemen had such is cooler regions. M. — The kings of Persia passed the summer at Ecbatana. Xen. Cyr. viii. — Palladius (i. 12.) orders that the summer apartments must look to the north. — Ivory. Many ornaments of this nature appeared in them, (C.) whence Achab’s palace was so called. 3 K. xxii. 39. H.