The Words of Amos

Chapter 9

The certainty of the desolation, 1-10. The restoring of the tabernacle of David, 11-15.

I saw the Lord standing upon the altar, and he said,/
"Smite the lintel of the door, so that the posts may shake./
Cut them in the head, all of them./
I will slay the last of them with the sword./
He who flees of them shall not flee away,/
and he who escapes of them shall not be delivered.

Though they dig into the place of the dead,/
from there my hand shall take them./
Though they climb up to heaven,/
from there I will bring them down.

Though they hide themselves on the top of Carmel,/
I will search and take them out from there./
Though they are hid from my sight in the bottom of the sea,/
from there I will command the serpent, and he shall bite them.

Though they go into captivity before their enemies,/
from there I will command the sword, and it shall slay them./
And I will set my eyes upon them/
for evil and not for good."

And the Lord GOD of hosts/
is he who touches the land, and it shall melt,/
and all who dwell in it shall mourn./
And it shall rise up wholly like a flood,/
and shall be drowned as by the flood of Egypt.

It is he who builds his upper chambers in the heaven/
and has founded his vault on the earth,/
he who calls for the waters of the sea/
and pours them out upon the face of the earth—/
Yahweh is his name.

"Are you not as children of the Cushites to me, O children of Israel?"

says the LORD.

"Have I not brought up Israel from the land of Egypt,/
the Philistines from Caphtor,/
and the Assyrians from Kir?

Behold, the eyes of the Lord GOD/
are upon the sinful kingdom,/
and I will destroy it from off the face of the earth,/
except that I will not utterly destroy the house of Jacob,"

says the LORD.

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

10 All the sinners of my people shall die by the sword,/
who say, 'The evil shall not overtake nor fall upon us.'

11 In that day I will raise up/
the tabernacle of David that has fallen/
and close up its breaches./
And I will raise up its ruins/
and build it as in the days of old,

12 So that they may possess the remnant of Edom/
and of all the heathen who are called by my name,"

says the LORD who does this.

13 "Behold, the days come,"

says the LORD,

"that the plowman shall overtake the reaper,/
and the treader of grapes shall overtake him who sows seed./
And the mountains shall drop sweet wine,/
and all the hills shall melt.

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

15 And I will plant them upon their land,/
and they shall no longer be pulled up/
out of their land which I have given them,"

says the LORD your God.


Matthew Henry Commentary - Amos, Chapter 9[➚]


John Gill's Chapter Summary:

This chapter contains the fifth and last vision the prophet saw; which represents the certain desolation of the land, city, and temple, and the slaughter of all sorts of persons, high and low, none should escape it (verse 1); [wherever they would be], they would be found out, whether in hell or heaven, on the tops of the highest mountains, or in the bottom of the sea, or in a foreign land, since the eyes of the Lord were upon them for evil (verses 2-4); nor could they hope to escape, when they considered his greatness and his power, and what he could do, and had done; and how they had behaved toward him, even though they were the people he had brought out of Egypt (verses 5-7); but though the sinful kingdom should be destroyed, yet not utterly, a remnant should be saved (verses 8-10); and the chapter is concluded with gracious promises of raising up the tabernacle of David [which had] fallen down, and of the return of the people of Israel to their own land; and of their settlement and continuance in it, never more to depart from it (verses 11-15).

[v.1a] - "lintel" - The Hebrew word is kaphtor (kaf-tore'), which means, the capital of a column. The capital is the uppermost part of a column, pillar or pilaster, serving as the head or crowning, and placed immediately over the shaft, and under the entablature.

[v.1b] - "Cut them in the head" - The Hebrew word from which head is translated is rosh (roshe), which in this case likely refers to the chief men, or the priests and rulers of the people.

[v.1c] - "the last of them" - The Hebrew word used here is achariyth (akh-ar-eeth'), which refers to the remnant, or those remaining. This is likely referring to the common people after the leaders were cut off (see note 1b).

[v.2-4] - Reference, Psalm 139:7-8.

[v.3] - "serpent" - This is to be understood as a large sea creature, such as Leviathan. Reference, Isaiah 27:1.

[v.5] - "And it shall rise up wholly like a flood, etc." - See the note for Amos 8:8.

[v.6a] - "upper chambers" - The Hebrew word here is maalah (mah-al-aw'), which means elevation (that is, the act of elevating), to go up, ascents, steps or stairs to ascend. By this is meant the places ascended to, such as chambers, or upper chambers.

[v.6b] - "vault" - The Hebrew word here is aguddah (ag-ood-daw'), which can have a couple of different meanings for this verse. One meaning, as in the KJV, is troop, as in all the animate creatures, which are God's troop and do his will. This meaning is based on the usage of the same Hebrew word in 2nd Samuel 2:25 (see also Genesis 2:1). The other meaning is vault, as in a continued arch, or an arched roof. This would refer to the vaulted sky, or the firmament, which rests, or is founded, on the earth.

[v.9] - "grain" - Literally, "a binding," or something bound up, collected, or bundled, as in a parcel or pouch. This comes from the Hebrew word tsrowr (tser-ore'). The Israelites will be collected in a sieve like grain.

[v.10] - "The evil shall not overtake nor fall upon us" - Compare with what is said of the scourge in Isaiah 28:15.

[v.11-12] - Quoted in Acts 15:16-17.

[v.11] - "In that day" - That is, in the day when the promised Redeemer would come.

[v.13] - Reference, Leviticus 26:5.