Amos 1

Amos 1:1

The words -- Portions of this prophecy imply a still larger fulfilment upon nominal Israel in the end of this age. R3424:6

Prophecies of the kind inspired by the Lord in early days are no longer his method. R3424:1

Of Amos -- Of humble birth, a sheep-tender, a farmer. R3423:3

One of the earliest prophets to write down the message which he delivered. R3423:3

Belongs to a period about a century after Elijah, nearly a century before Isaiah, and about two centuries before Jeremiah, Ezekiel and Daniel. R3423:3

Of Tekoa -- The home of Amos was in Judah, but under the Lord's direction, he went to the ten tribes to deliver to them the Lord's message. R2356:1

Concerning Israel -- The brunt of the prophet's message fell against the ten-tribe kingdom of Israel. R3423:3

Amos 1:2

From Zion -- The spiritual phase of the Kingdom of God. A297; T33

From Jerusalem -- The earthly phase of the Kingdom of God. A297

The habitations -- Because of their close identity with Israel, the adjoining nations are made the subject of this prophecy. R2355:6

Of the shepherds -- Greedy, ignorant, lazy teachers. F287

Amos 1:3

For three transgressions -- At the present time to copy either Elijah or Amos would indicate a total misapprehension respecting the divine will and message. R3424:1

Damascus -- Capital city of Syria, on the north; in line with divine retributions. R3423:6

Amos 1:8

The Philistines -- On the west. R3423:6

Amos 1:9

Tyrus -- Tyre, to the northwest. R3423:6

Edom -- To the south. R3423:6

Amos 1:12

Of Bozrah -- The ecclesiastical powers of Babylon. D17

Amos 1:13

Ammon -- On the east. R3423:6

Amos 1:14

The day of battle -- The time of trouble. D527

Amos 2

Amos 2:1

Moab -- To the south. R3423:6

Amos 2:4

For three transgressions -- The basis of the Jewish Rabbis' teaching of forgiveness for three repented wrongs. R2665:3

Of Judah -- To the south. R3423:6

And for four -- Peter adds the three and the four, inquiring whether the Lord would have his followers forgive seven times. R2665:3

Amos 2:6

Transgressions of Israel -- The ten-tribe kingdom, the center of the prophet's message. R3423:6, R2356:1

Having captured their attention with words descriptive of the troubles coming upon their surrounding enemies, the circle grew narrower; the weight of the prophet's message was especially against themselves, and they were indignant. R3423:6

The punishment -- The denunciation of Israel occurs chiefly in chapters 3 to 6 and in chapter 7:9-17. R3423:6

Amos 2:10

Forty years -- Prefiguring the 19 centuries of the Gospel age. R3079:3

Amos 3

Amos 3:2

You only -- Natural Israel in the Jewish age. R532:6, R2518:6, R3459:6, R5614:2; D191; OV224:T "Israel, mine elect." (Isa. 45:4) F176

The twelve tribes; Israel in its two parts. R2356:1

God's favor to Israel was merely an earthly and preparatory one. R4769:5

Israel according to the flesh was called of the Lord to be his peculiar people, separate from the other peoples or nations of the earth. F85

There was an "election" during the Jewish age. R2396:2, R532:6, R257:2; A97

Israel only was invited to the "great feast" of Luke 14:15-24

when the feast was ready in our Lord's day. R2701:3

Israel was God's kingdom. On the contrary, the present governments of earth are all reckoned as "kingdoms of this world" in contradistinction to the Kingdom of our Lord and his Anointed. R2364:2, R583:3

The Gentile nations were "strangers, aliens and foreigners from the commonwealth of Israel"--"without God, having no hope in the world." (Eph. 2:12) R3467:2, R2348:5, R1459:3; HG114:3

God did not exact from other nations a tithe, a tenth, but neither did he promise to other nations his special care, bounty and blessing. R2485:5

God has supervised the affairs of other nations to the extent of hindering conditions which would be inimical to his plan of blessing all the families of the earth. R4055:3, R3012:2

From the time of the fall, none but the one line of Adam's children had divine favor--the line from which Abraham, Noah, Israel and Christ came--the line of Seth. R1459:3

Solomon's mismarriages, though worldly-wise, were unwise from the Lord's standpoint, who desired Israel to be separate and distinct from all the families of the earth. R2324:1

Therefore it was improper to attempt to convert the Moabites, for God had not called the Moabites. R5614:2

Even when the gospel "began to be preached by our Lord" it was restricted to the same "lost sheep of the house of Israel." (Matt. 15:24) R2518:6

Have I known -- Recognized. R1271:6, R271:3, R2396:2, R2761:3, R3752:3, R4344:2; A221, A97; Q756:2, Q600:T; HG428:2

Covenanted with. R1271:6, R4344:2, R4538:5, R3752:3, R3467:2, R2485:5, R2356:1, R2364:2, R1780:3

God's dealings were with this people exclusively. Q792:4

Only to Israel had God sent his law and given his prophecies. R5910:3, R5768:6, R4344:2, R3467:2

Adopted as his special possession in the world. R3752:3

Revealing himself to, and in active cooperation with, the nation of Israel alone. R4055:3; D191

In Israel God placed his own throne, typically, and her kings represented him. (1 Chron. 29:23) R1978:6

Not until Cornelius' day did any Gentiles come into any kind of relationship with God. R4769:4

For 2081 years from the covenant with Abraham in 2045 BC (2081 years after the fall of man) to the end of the 70 weeks in 36 AD. R3459:3,6*

"Go not into the way of the Gentiles" (Matt. 10:5); "I am not sent but unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel." (Matt. 15:24) A97; R2518:6; OV224:T Therefore -- Because of their special favors they had a special responsibility. R2356:1

Because of their covenant--therefore we should not suppose that every famine, pestilence or war in the world's history has been similarly of special divine imposition in chastisement. R3400:1

I will punish you -- Chastise you for disloyalty. R1979:1

Disciplinary experiences, chastisements. R3223:2, R3400:1, R5768:6

The laws of retribution operating automatically. R3223:1

Amos 3:3

Except they be agreed -- Israel would not walk in harmony with the Lord while their hearts were in harmony with sin. R2356:1

Amos 3:6

A trumpet -- Of alarm, the message of Amos, announcing the dire catastrophes that shortly would come. R2356:2

Shall there be evil -- "Evil" here means disaster, calamities, affliction, or physical evil, implying no moral quality or responsibility. R4731:1, R849:1, R871:4, R1271:4, R1800:4, R2029:2, R2356:2

In Isa. 45:7, "I make peace and create evil," the same word "evil" is contrasted with "peace," indicating that it means "trouble." If moral badness were meant, the contrasting word would be "righteousness." R1780:2, R1271:5, R1351:2*

The word "evil" in this text has the meaning in the Hebrew language of adversity. Q773:4

Sin is always an evil, but evil is not always a sin. A125; R1226:2

Hebrew "ra." Like the English word "evil" it might be used in referring to anything not good, undesirable. Context must determine whether moral evil (sin) or physical evil (pain, trouble) is meant. R1800:2

Jer 21:10-14; Jer 25:29; Jer 26:2-6; Eze. 14:12-23; Amos 4:4-11; Amos 9:8-10 show that the evil the Lord creates is the calamities and judgments that he visits on ungodly nations in condemnation of their evil of sin, which is an abomination in his sight. R1299:6*

All evil (trouble, calamity) is punitive. Had all things continued perfect and upright there would have been no trouble or any occasion for it. R872:1

Because of Israel's iniquity. (verse 2) R1271:6, R871:5

Calamities sent upon the Jews as chastisements. A125; Q773:4; R1271:5, R1780:2

As covenanted, if they would live in harmony with him and his Law he would bless them in every way; if they did not so live, he would send plagues and disasters upon them. R2354:2

Instances of calamities as chastisements are the United States' Civil War, freeing millions of slaves and, possibly, the Spanish-American War. R2356:2

A city -- A city of Israel. R1358:5

If the people of any city or tribe got into a state of idolatry or gross sin, God would send a plague or other chastisement for their correction. R1226:2

This does not apply to other nations than Israel. R2024:2, R1887:2

Hath not done it -- Brought it upon them. R1358:5

Two things must be borne in mind: the proper significance of the word "evil" and the special covenant relationship of Israel to God. R1780:1, R1271:4, R2356:4

Have naught to do with it? R1271:4

Their calamities could not come without God's permission or knowledge. R849:1, R871:4, R1271:4,6, R1358:5, R1780:3, R1887:2, R1226:2

Every drouth, famine, pestilence, etc., should not be considered as a judgment from the Almighty. R4731:1, R2356:2

God declared man guilty and pronounced the righteous penalty, death. In carrying it out, various agencies are allowed to operate against man. Thus God is said to "create evil." (Isa. 45:7) R849:1

Divine providence deals differently with spiritual Israel, natural Israel and the world. All Israel's calamities were of providence and for chastisements; the Gentile's calamities are not generally, but only occasionally, so; the Church's experiences are as the world's, but overruled to bring some blessing. R2357:1, R2356:6

Amos 3:7

Revealeth his secret -- The Israelites were generally forewarned of impending evils and given the alternative of repentance. R1358:5

That his people may profit by the chastisements and experiences of the Lord's hand. R2356:2

Pre-announced, not to bring repentance, but with a view to the proper appreciation of the judgments--that the people might know they were judgments and not accidents. R2356:2

"The Spirit of Truth...will show you things to come." (John 16:13) R3551:4, R437:3*

Those in full harmony with him will not be left in darkness. B22

God's Word explains many mysteries, and his faithful servants who study his Word are not in darkness (1 Thes. 5:4-8) as the worldly are (1 John 2:11). R1063:4

Unto his servants -- Thus Abraham and Lot knew of the destruction of Sodom beforehand; Noah knew of the flood in time to build the ark; at the first advent, Simeon, Anna and the wise men of the East knew to expect Messiah. B21

The prophets -- They were to remind Israel of their covenant and tell them that their calamities were from him and by his will for their correction. A125

Most of what he revealed unto them was not for themselves, but for us, the Gospel Church. (1 Pet. 1:12) B22

Amos 3:13

The house of Jacob -- Natural Israel. A300

Amos 4

Amos 4:5

With leaven -- Symbol of corruption, error, sin. F464; T98

Amos 4:6

I also have -- Whatever calamities, etc., they suffered would be proof of God's chastisement for violation of their covenant. R2356:5

Amos 4:10

With the sword -- In war. R2356:5

Amos 4:12

Prepare to meet thy God -- From the moment we become believers and "present our bodies." (Rom. 12:1) R4234:5

Not, as usually supposed, by beginning to get pious when we feel the approach of sickness, death or calamity. R4234:6

Our meeting with him has already begun. R4234:6

Amos 5

Amos 5:4

Seek ye me -- Return to harmony with God and avert calamities. R3424:3

Amos 5:5

Seek not Beth-el -- It would be in vain for fleshly Israel to seek help from the coming calamities in the centers of their religious institutions which were corrupt. R3424:3

Today, as with the Lord and apostles, the chief opponents of the truth are the religious teachers who have " a form of godliness." (2 Tim. 3:5) R3424:2

Amos 5:6

Like fire -- Destruction. R3424:3

House of Joseph -- The ten-tribe kingdom, so-called because of the preponderating influence of the tribes of Ephraim and Manasseh. R3424:3

Beth-el -- The city of idol worship. R2356:6

Amos 5:7

Ye -- The great ones of fleshly Israel in Amos' day, typifying the trusts in the close of this Harvest time. R3424:5, R3425:1

Judgment -- Justice in your courts. R3424:4

Injustice, inequity, is now operating. R3425:1

To wormwood -- Bitterness, disappointment. R3424:4

Instead of the sweets of justice. R3424:4

Leave off righteousness -- Cast down righteousness to the earth. Equity was not a matter of primary consideration. R3424:4

Amos 5:8

The seven stars -- The group Pleiades, in the constellation Taurus. R3424:4

And Orion -- Referring to divine power in some what similar language as in Job 9:9 & Job 38:21. R3424:4

The shadow of death -- When Christ appears, day appears, life appears, fruitfulness appears, and the curse departs. R302:3*

Into the morning -- The resurrection morning, the Millennial age. E359; R302:3*

Calleth for the waters -- Able not only to gather the waters into seas, but also to call the waters back from the seas to the clouds, and pour it down again upon the earth in its seasons. R3424:4

Amos 5:9

The spoiled -- The masses. R3425:4

Against the strong -- When they rise in anarchy against them. R3425:4

Amos 5:11

Ye take from him -- A drunkenness of greed. R2357:2

Ye have built houses -- Riches were accumulated, but they were in the hands of the rich and the great, and the poor were being unjustly dealt with. R3424:3

Amos 5:13

The prudent -- Being helpless, and in the minority. R3424:5

Shall keep silence -- Some did witness the evils, but remained silent from motives of prudence. R3424:5

Similarly, it is not the duty of the Lord's people today to reprove public officials. R3424:5

Amos 5:14

Seek good, and not evil -- Make a thorough reformation-- love righteousness and hate sin. R3424:5

Everybody is seeking pleasure and not misery, happiness and not woe. The difficulty is that all of our judgments are more or less polluted. R5242:3

Amos 5:15

Hate the evil -- We are to be like God in our loves and hates--to hate sin and to love righteousness. R1251:1

We must have no affectionate love for evildoers, though we should charitably hope that much of the evil is the result of misinformation and inherited weaknesses, and accordingly should feel and act kindly, with pitying love toward such. R1251:2

Amos 5:18

Woe unto you -- "Ho you" (improperly translated "woe"--Young). R409:1

The great mass of the human family, aside from the saints. R93:4

Day of the LORD -- The entire Millennial age, but generally applied to the beginning of that day. F592:2; B33

Darkness, and not light -- The Gospel and Millennial ages lap; the one ending, the other commencing. The dark day is at once the closing scene of the night of weeping and the dawn of the morning of joy. R592:2, R409:1

Amos 5:20

Day of the LORD -- The Day of Vengeance, the time of trouble. D11; R409:2, R592:2

Amos 5:22

Your meat offerings -- Christendom's fine church edifices, grand organs, trained choirs, paid ministers, and formalistic worship are not recognized and accepted by the Lord. R5696:4

Amos 5:25

Forty years -- Prefiguring the 19 centuries of the Gospel age. R3079:3

Amos 5:26

Of your Moloch -- Type of the misrepresentation of God worshipped by those who endorse the eternal torment theory. R2360:1, R3464:6

Amos 6

Amos 6:1

At ease in Zion -- There is a nominal spiritual Zion and a nominal fleshly Zion. D23; R2357:3

Settled down to ease, luxury, self-gratification. R5243:1, R2357:1,3

Boasting of their prosperity. "I am rich and increased in goods and have need of nothing." (Rev. 3:17) R2357:1,3

Wealth brings increased opportunity for sin in its various forms, including debauchery. R5243:2

Amos 6:3

The evil day -- The Day of Vengeance. R2357:3

Violence to come near -- The poor, surrounded by the blessings of our day, are often miserable because their minds are discontented. The result is that their hearts are filled with anger, malice and jealousy of the rich. R5243:2

Amos 6:4

That lie upon beds -- Creeds. D608

Trusting that the church is being carried forward to the conquest of the world by an easy path. R2357:3

Amos 6:6

That drink wine -- Doctrine. R5633:2; C160; D265, D266

Not solely literal drunkenness, but more specially the drunkenness of greed, swallowing up the poor and needy. R2357:2

In bowls -- Drinking the wine of earthly pleasure and extravagance inordinately. R2357:1

The Christian is to be temperate in all the affairs of life--in language, in business, in food and drink, in joys and in sorrows. R2355:2-5

Are not grieved -- Not solicitous for the poor. R2357:1

Amos 6:8

The city -- Babylon, Christendom. D527

Amos 6:13

Taken to us horns -- Power. T42

Amos 7

Amos 7:2

Shall Jacob -- Natural Israel. A300

Amos 7:10

Then Amaziah -- Representing those who are at ease in nominal spiritual Zion. R2357:4

The priest -- Prince. R3423:6

Amos' opponents were the professedly religious, and it was so also with our Lord. We must expect the same in our day. R3424:2

Amos -- Representing those who are faithfully declaring the Harvest Message at the present time. R2357:4

Not able to bear -- He is disturbing the peace of those who are at ease in Zion. R2357:4

Amos 7:12

Flee thee away -- Because the prophet had gone so far as to tell openly of the fall of the reigning dynasty. R3423:6

Amos 7:13

Prophesy not again -- The announcement today to nominal spiritual Zion of the "Day of Vengeance" is as unacceptable and disbelieved as was the message of Amos. R2357:3,4

Amos 7:15

Go, prophesy -- The Lord's people today, as Amos, are not to be deterred into silence from prudential reasons, but are to speak the truth in love. R2357:4

Amos 8

Amos 8:4

O ye -- An aristocracy of brains and wealth instead of the former aristocracy of heredity. D309

Swallow up the needy -- Seeking to hold them down to bare subsistence. D309

Amos 8:5

The ephah -- The measure. R2357:2

And the shekel -- The price. R2357:2

Amos 8:6

And sell -- And sell them. R2357:2

Amos 8:8

It shall rise up -- A new battle has begun on the part of the rich for the maintenance and increase of their wealth and power, and on the part of the lower classes for the right to labor and enjoy the moderate comforts of life. D308, D309

Amos 8:11

Will send a famine -- The 1260 years of Papal supremacy. B256

Began 539 AD, when ecclesiastical power attained persecuting ability, and ended 1799 AD, as its persecutions came to an end. R5742:1, R234:6, R389:2*, R491:5

In another sense, the 1260 years from 325 AD, the Council of Nice, to 1585 AD. R5742:1

A spiritual famine. R5993:3, R557:3

A hunger and thirst for the truth--the bread of life and the water of life. OV259:4, R263:3; R3334:4; CR343:1

Resulting in nominal spiritual Israel's being in a dilapidated condition. R4923:1

The true-hearted are starving. R5063:1

Resulting in a lack of church attendance in fulfilment of this prophecy. R5375:1

"The honorable men (clergy, bishops and popes) are famished, and their multitude dried up with thirst." (Isa. 5:13) R1896:3

Starving upon the inconsistencies of human theory and "tradition of the elders." R2808:3

Poor parishioners have been fed upon husks until they are famished. HG712:6

Not with standing Bibles by the millions and general education, so that rich and poor have the ability to read God's Word. OV259:2

Our day is full of philosophies, inventions, sciences (true and false), money-making, financial and theological schemes--but these things do not satisfy even the worldly. R3334:4

Even Babylon's notables are dissatisfied, famished. R2905:1

My people are "perishing for lack of knowledge." (Hos. 4:6) They have "hidden the key of knowledge." (Luke 11:52) R2693:4; OV263:3

Typified by the 3 1/2-year drouth in the days of Elijah. (1Kings 18,19) B256; R5993:3, R2326:6, R557:3, R491:5*, R389:2*, R234:6

Applies to Jews as well as to Christians. OV154:T Of bread -- Crying out for the bread of truth instead of the stones of error. R1579:2

Nor a thirst -- "Because the people have no knowledge." (Isa. 5:13) they are consumed with thirst at the present time. R2904:6, R1896:3

Illustrated by the large demand for truth literature, especially the Photodrama Scenario. R5618:6*

Hearing -- Understanding. OV154:T, HG317:2

The words of the LORD -- The message of God's love and of his plan. CR343:3

The necessary thing to do is to resume Bible study and that without our creedal spectacles. R4923:2

Amos 8:12

From sea to sea -- There is a famine in every denomination, in every part of the world. OV259:5

They -- The Jews. Q269:2

Shall not find it -- While today the Lord could feed the hungry Israelites indeed without our aid, let us gratefully thank him for the privilege of being co-workers in any capacity. R2644:4

Because they seek not where alone it is to be found. OV260:2

Amos 8:13

Faint for thirst -- Increasing intelligence on every hand has awakened our reasoning faculties along religious lines, and the result is the gnawing of hunger in our hearts. OV259:3

Amos 9

Amos 9:2

Though they -- Israel, as a nation or individually. E374

Dig into hell -- Sheol, oblivion, death--not torment. R828:6*; E374

A figurative expression, but certainly pits of earth are the only hells men can dig into. R2599:3

Israel, as a nation, did dig its way toward national oblivion. Yet God shall prevent this. E374

Shall mine hand -- My power. E374

Amos 9:6

Stories -- Chambers. (R.V.) R1812:2

Troop -- Vault. (R.V.) Highly figurative and poetic language, as in the vaulted sky. R1812:2,3

Amos 9:8

Will destroy it -- As a kingdom. R2357:5

Not utterly destroy -- The people of Israel would be preserved as a separate people from others. R2357:5

Amos 9:9

I will sift -- Disperse. R107:2*

The house of Israel -- Though scattered throughout the whole earth, they have not lost their identity. R2357:5

Amos 9:10

The evil -- The evil the Lord creates and does is the calamities and judgment that he visits upon the ungodly nations in opposition to, and in condemnation of, the evil of sin, which is an abomination in his sight. R1299:6*

Amos 9:11

In that day -- In the dawning of the Millennial day. E374

The restitution times, under the terms of the New covenant. R2357:6

This prophecy is about to be fulfilled. R3425:4

Quoted by the Apostle James in Acts 15:16,17. R3425:4, R2357:6, R2124:3

Will I raise up -- Permanently. C257

The rebuilding of the tabernacle of David, which fell after Jesus left their house desolate, takes place at the second advent. R107:2*

The tabernacle -- The house, royalty, or dominion. A81; C257

The standard. R2357:6

Of David -- Of David's posterity, The Christ. C257

The throne of David was over all the tribes, and here represents the throne of the greater David--the Beloved Son of God--to be established after the taking out of a people for his name. (Acts. 15:14) R2124:3

Raise up his ruins -- The ruins of fleshly Israel. B86; R3425:4

And I will build it -- "And so all Israel shall be saved." (Rom. 11:26) B217

After the establishment of Messiah's Kingdom. R5817:5

Amos 9:12

That they may possess -- Called to be members of the Body of Christ, the great Mediator, that through them the "residue of men might seek after the Lord." (Acts 15:17) R4512:2

To be no longer a house of servants under Moses, but the house of sons, under Jesus. R5817:5

The remnant of Edom -- Christendom. D15

All the heathen -- "All the Gentiles." (Acts 15:13-18) HG336:4

Amos 9:13

The plowman -- The great time of trouble that will prepare the world for the Millennial seed-sowing. C216; R1162:1, R5761:2; Q 74:2

In the time of trouble the Lord will run the plowshare of truth in every direction throughout the world. R2627:5

In the Jewish Harvest Jesus was the plowman and the reaper. A double work was being accomplished--reaping the Jewish people and preparing for a new dispensation. Q74:2

Shall overtake -- Shall follow close after. R2627:5

The time of trouble will overtake the reaping work and bring it to a close. R5761:2

The Harvest will hardly have accomplished its intention of gathering the Church and Great Company until the plowman of trouble will be running his furrows through the world. Q74:2

The plowman will keep on plowing after all our reaping efforts have ended. R5761:2

The plowman is already beginning, and he is overtaking the reapers. Q74:2, R1162:1

So accurately timed is every feature of the divine plan that part fits to part, and work to work, closely. SM187:2

The reaper -- The Lord. R5761:2 Gathering God's elect. R1162:4

Began with the presence of the Lord of the Harvest, 1874 AD. R1161:6

Treader of grapes -- The forces engaged in the final combat. R1162:4

Drop sweet wine -- Referring to the blessed reinvigorating influence of the Lord's Kingdom. R1162:4

Hills shall melt -- The mountain (Kingdom) of the Lord's house shall be exalted above the melting hills (kingdoms) of the old dominion. R1162:4

Amos 9:14

I will bring again -- After spiritual Israel has been developed (verses 11 & 12) favor shall return to natural Israel. R2357:6, R2358:1, R5817:5

My people of Israel -- A scattered, homeless, desolate and persecuted people, they are still a distinct and homogeneous people. C245

The waste cities -- In which they formerly lived. C245

Amos 9:15

I will plant them -- Not yet fulfilled in the return of the Jews to Palestine. Referred to by James in Acts 15:16, "I will build again the tabernacle of David." R2124:3

From 1878 AD onward. C259, C258

Their land -- The land that God says he had given them, the land that he promised to Abraham. (Gen. 13:14-17; Gen. 17:8) C245

No more be pulled up -- This could not refer to the return from the captivity in literal Babylon, since after that return they were again pulled down and plucked up. C259