King James Bible
with Catholic Commentary by George Leo Haydock

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Amos 9

The ruin of Israel. (1-10) The restoration of the Jews and the gospel blessing. (11-15)

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The ruin of Israel

1 I saw the LORD standing upon the altar: and he said, Smite the lintel of the door, that the posts may shake: and cut them in the head, all of them; and I will slay the last of them with the sword: he that fleeth of them shall not flee away, and he that escapeth of them shall not be delivered.

2 Though they dig into hell, thence shall mine hand take them; though they climb up to heaven, thence will I bring them down:

3 And though they hide themselves in the top of Carmel, I will search and take them out thence; and though they be hid from my sight in the bottom of the sea, thence will I command the serpent, and he shall bite them:

4 And though they go into captivity before their enemies, thence will I command the sword, and it shall slay them: and I will set mine eyes upon them for evil, and not for good.

5 And the Lord GOD of hosts is he that toucheth the land, and it shall melt, and all that dwell therein shall mourn: and it shall rise up wholly like a flood; and shall be drowned, as by the flood of Egypt.

6 It is he that buildeth his stories in the heaven, and hath founded his troop in the earth; he that calleth for the waters of the sea, and poureth them out upon the face of the earth: The LORD is his name.

7 Are ye not as children of the Ethiopians unto me, O children of Israel? saith the LORD. Have not I brought up Israel out of the land of Egypt? and the Philistines from Caphtor, and the Syrians from Kir?

8 Behold, the eyes of the Lord GOD are upon the sinful kingdom, and I will destroy it from off the face of the earth; saving that I will not utterly destroy the house of Jacob, saith the LORD.

9 For, lo, I will command, and I will sift the house of Israel among all nations, like as corn is sifted in a sieve, yet shall not the least grain fall upon the earth.

10 All the sinners of my people shall die by the sword, which say, The evil shall not overtake nor prevent us.

The restoration of the Jews and the gospel blessing

11 In that day will I raise up the tabernacle of David that is fallen, and close up the breaches thereof; and I will raise up his ruins, and I will build it as in the days of old:

12 That they may possess the remnant of Edom, and of all the heathen, which are called by my name, saith the LORD that doeth this.

13 Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that the plowman shall overtake the reaper, and the treader of grapes him that soweth seed; and the mountains shall drop sweet wine, and all the hills shall melt.

14 And I will bring again the captivity of my people of Israel, and they shall build the waste cities, and inhabit them; and they shall plant vineyards, and drink the wine thereof; they shall also make gardens, and eat the fruit of them.

15 And I will plant them upon their land, and they shall no more be pulled up out of their land which I have given them, saith the LORD thy God.

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G Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Ver. 1. Altar, in Jerusalem. C. viii. 3. and i. 2. God is going to punish Israel, (C.) or the two tribes. Chal. S. Jer. — The ruin of the altar and temple, imply the abolishing of sacrifices during the captivity, at Babylon. W. — But Amos speaks rather of Israel. C. — Sword. The princes and people are all guilty. Sept. “strike or cut on the heads of all.” H.

Ver. 2. Hell; to the deepest caves, where they used to flee. Ps. cxxxviii. 8.

Ver. 3. Top, in woods, or caverns. — Serpent. Fishes and sea monsters are so called.

Ver. 5. A river. Sept. “the river of Egypt.” C. viii. 8. and v. 24. C. — Grabe’s ed. has “its consummation (or utter ruin) shall rise up as a river.” H.

Ver. 6. Ascension, or his high throne. Ch. — Sept. “the ascent, and hath founded the declarations (H.) or promise upon,” &c. which must be explained in a moral sense. C. — Bundle. That is, his Church, bound up together by the bands of one faith and communion, (Ch.) which God will protect, and punish sinners. W. — Heb. “his apartments in heaven, and his assembly (or footstool) on earth.” — Sea, by floods, or rather by rain. C. v. 8. C.

Ver. 7. Ethiopians. That is, as black as they, by your iniquities. Ch. — Chus was father of the Scythians, Arabs, &c. Yet none of these nations were under the peculiar protection of God. The Israelites depended too much on this prerogative, (C.) which they deserved to lose by their sins. H. — God brought them out of Egypt. But he also took the Philistines from Caphtor, (C.) and enabled them to settle in the country. H. — Cappadocia. Cyprus, (Gen. x. 14.) or rather Crete. 1 K. C. — Cyrene, (Sym.) “wall,” (Th.) or “pit.” Sept. Theglathphalassar took Aram or the people of Damascus into captivity. C. — Their future return is represented as already past. Vat. Mercer.

Ver. 9. Ground, to be mixed with the good corn. — Israel shall be purified in captivity. C. — Though many perished, God still preserved his Church. W.

Ver. 10. Us. Such infidels delayed repentance, (H.) or laughed at the menaces of impending ruin. C. v. 18. C.

Ver. 11. David. S. James, after S. Peter, explains this of the vocation of the Gentiles. Acts xv. 15. W. — After the fall of Israel, Juda still flourished: but this cannot be meant. The prosperity after the return from Babylon, or rather under Jesus Christ, must fulfil the prediction. Zorobalel had a very precarious authority, and the Machabees were not of the tribe of Juda, nor was their kingdom so flourishing or durable. C.

Ver. 12. Edom, subdued by Hircan, with the surrounding nations. The same letters may be read Adam, “man,” as the Sept. have, agreeably to Acts xv. 17. C. — “That the rest of men might seek the Lord, (Grabe substitutes me) and all the nations upon whom my,” &c. Edom and all mankind shall receive the glad tidings of salvation. H.

Ver. 13. Shall overtake, &c. By this is meant the great abundance of spiritual blessings; which, as it were, by a constant succession, shall enrich the Church of Christ. Ch. — Munster, and his imitator, Clarius, see nothing but an allegory in this abundance and return, v. 14. Yet the literal sense ought to be adopted, when it involves no contradiction. Houbigant, pref. p. 297. — God promised a succession of crops to the faithful Israelites, (Lev. xxvi. 5.) and the return of the ten tribes is frequently specified. C.