King James Bible
with Catholic Commentary by George Leo Haydock

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Amos 6

The danger of luxury and false security. (1-7) Punishments of sins. (8-14)

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The danger of luxury and false security

1 Woe to them that are at ease in Zion, and trust in the mountain of Samaria, which are named chief of the nations, to whom the house of Israel came!

2 Pass ye unto Calneh, and see; and from thence go ye to Hamath the great: then go down to Gath of the Philistines: be they better than these kingdoms? or their border greater than your border?

3 Ye that put far away the evil day, and cause the seat of violence to come near;

4 That lie upon beds of ivory, and stretch themselves upon their couches, and eat the lambs out of the flock, and the calves out of the midst of the stall;

5 That chant to the sound of the viol, and invent to themselves instruments of musick, like David;

6 That drink wine in bowls, and anoint themselves with the chief ointments: but they are not grieved for the affliction of Joseph.

7 Therefore now shall they go captive with the first that go captive, and the banquet of them that stretched themselves shall be removed.

Punishments of sins

8 The Lord GOD hath sworn by himself, saith the LORD the God of hosts, I abhor the excellency of Jacob, and hate his palaces: therefore will I deliver up the city with all that is therein.

9 And it shall come to pass, if there remain ten men in one house, that they shall die.

10 And a man’s uncle shall take him up, and he that burneth him, to bring out the bones out of the house, and shall say unto him that is by the sides of the house, Is there yet any with thee? and he shall say, No. Then shall he say, Hold thy tongue: for we may not make mention of the name of the LORD.

11 For, behold, the LORD commandeth, and he will smite the great house with breaches, and the little house with clefts.

12 Shall horses run upon the rock? will one plow there with oxen? for ye have turned judgment into gall, and the fruit of righteousness into hemlock:

13 Ye which rejoice in a thing of nought, which say, Have we not taken to us horns by our own strength?

14 But, behold, I will raise up against you a nation, O house of Israel, saith the LORD the God of hosts; and they shall afflict you from the entering in of Hemath unto the river of the wilderness.

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G Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Ver. 1. Wealthy. Sept. Syr. and Arab. “despisers of Sion.” Heb. also, “who hate Sion.” The prophecy wholly regards Israel. C. — It is a great crime for the rich to neglect the poor; but still more so, when wealthy clergymen shew no compassion for the spiritual or corporal wants of their neighbours. W. — State. Heb. “to whom the house of Israel comes” for judgment.

Ver. 2. Chalane. Ctesiphon (C.) was built on its ruins. Gen. x. 10. H. — Why do you imitate these cities? or, has their greatness protected them? Phul probably took Chanane, and Jeroboam II. the other cities. v. 15. and 4 K. xiv. 25. At that time there was no appearance of the kingdom being destroyed; yet Amos composes a funeral canticle, to shew the certainty of the event.

Ver. 3. Separated. Heb. “remove the evil day,” as if it would not overtake you. Ezec. xii. 22. Sept. “who are praying (C.) or coming (Grabe) to the evil day, approaching and touching false sabbaths.” H. — They pray to be delivered, while they continue (C.) their false worship. H.

Ver. 4. Ivory, with which the beds for eating were adorned. v. 7. C. — Wanton. Heb. “stretch themselves out upon their,” &c. H.

Ver. 5. David. They think they excel him in music; but he consecrated his talent to a better purpose. C. — Sept. “they deemed them stable, and not fugitive things.” H. — They have placed their chief good in such pleasures. Theod. C.

Ver. 6. In bowels. Sept. “refined,” (H.) or cleared of the dregs. — Joseph, of their brethren, or they seem to have no share in the sufferings of mankind. Ps. lxxii. 5.

Ver. 7. Luxurious. Heb. “the feast of those who stretch themselves out, shall,” &c. Sept. “the neighing shall be removed from Ephraim.” His lusts shall be punished. Jer. v. 8. — Some translate Heb. “the mourning of those who stretch themselves on their beds is at hand.” Others, “their funeral feast is distant.” None shall bewail their death. So ambiguous is the original. C.

Ver. 8. Jacob. God loved the humility of the patriarch, and hated the pride of his posterity. W.

Ver. 9. Die. Their numbers will not protect them from the plague.

Ver. 10. Burn. After the captivity, it was more common to bury or to embalm the dead. C.

Ver. 11. Lord. He has done it. Do not repine. Theod. S. Cyr. — Heb. “Be silent, and not to remember the,” &c. He will offer comfort. C. — Still, none will return to the Lord. S. Jer.

Ver. 12. Clefts. All shall perish, (C.) both Israel and Juda. Chal. Grot. — But he speaks only of the former.

Ver. 13. Buffles, which cannot be tamed. Heb. “with oxen.” We must understand, on rocks. C. — Sept. “Shall they be silent when they are with females?” H. — To turn the works of justice into sins, is no less unnatural than to plough with wild buffles. W.

Ver. 14. Naught: in your idols, which are nothing, (1 Cor. viii. 4.) or in your own strength, fortifications, or allies. — Horns: glory and power. C. — Pa rata tollo cornua. Hor. epod. 6.

Ver. 15. Nation; the Assyrians. — Desert, commonly called Bezor, (C.) between Damietta and Rhinocorura. S. Jer. — The whole territory of Israel, reaching so far, (v. 2.) shall be laid waste. C.