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CHAPTER VII.

desolate, and the sanctuaries of Israel shall

he laid waste; and I will rise against the 1 The judgments of the grasshoppers, 4 and of the

house of Jeroboam with the sword. fire, are diverted by the prayer of Amos. 7 By the wall of a plumbline is signified the rejection of 10 9 Then Amaziah the priest of Beth-el Israel. 10 Amazial complaineth of Amos. sent to Jeroboam king of Israel, saying, Amos sheweth his calling, 16 and Amaziah's judg

Amos hath conspired against thee in the ment,

midst of the house of Israel: the land is not Thus hath the Lord God shewed unto me; able to bear all his words. and, behold, he formed 'grasshoppers in the 11 For thus Amos saith, Jeroboam shall beginning of the shooting up of the latter die by the sword, and Israel shall surely be growth; and, lo, it was the latter growth led away captive out of their own land. after the king's mowings.

12 Also Amaziah said unto Amos, O thou 2 And it came to pass, that when they had seer, go, flee thee away into the land of made an end of eating the grass of the land, Judah, and there eat bread, and prophesy then I said, O Lord God, forgive, I beseech there : thee: by 'whom shall Jacob arise ? for he is 13 But prophesy not again any more at small.

Beth-el : for it is the king's chapel, and it is 3 The LORD repented for this: It shall the king's court. not be, saith the LORD.

14 Then answered Amos, and said to 4 | Thus hath the Lord God shewed unto Amaziah, I was no prophet, neither was I a me: and, behold, the Lord God called to prophet's son: but I was an herdman, and a contend by fire, and it devoured the great gatherer of 'sycamore fruit : deep, and did eat up a part.

15 And the LORD took me as I followed 5 Then said I, O Lord God, cease, I be- the flock, and the LORD said unto me, Go, seech thee: by whom shall Jacob arise ? for prophesy unto my people Israel. he is small.

16 Now therefore hear thou the word of 6 The LORD repented for this: This also the LORD: Thou sayest, Prophesy not against shall not be, saith the Lord God.

Israel, and 'drop not thy word against the 7 Thus he shewed me: and, behold, the house of Isaac. Lord stood upon a wall made by a plumbline, 17 Therefore thus saith the LORD; Thy with a plumbline in his hand.

wife shall be an harlot in the city, and thy 8 And the LORD said unto me, Amos, sons and thy daughters shall fall by the what seest thou ? And I said, A plumbline. sword, and thy land shall be divided by line; Then said the Lord, Behold, I will set a and thou shalt die in a polluted land : and plumbline in the midst of my people Israel : Israel shall surely go into captivity forth of I will not again pass by them any more:

his land. 9 And the high places of Isaac shall be i Or, green worms. 2 Or, who of (or, for) Jacob shall stand ? 3 Or, sanctuary

* Heb. house of the kingdom. 5 Or, wild figs.

6 Heb. from behind.

7 Ezek, 21. 2.

to the present text, illustrating the probable employment of Amos. We now introduce a representation of the fruit,

Verse 1. Grasshoppers.'—See the note on Nahum iii. 17.

- 'The latter growth after the king's mowings.'-As for any use, the word rendered mowings' should be more properly feedings.' Burder, in illustration, very aptly quotes La Roque, to shew the time of the kings must have been the month of March, or thereabouts. La Roque, writing from the papers of D'Arvieux, says, 'The Arabs turu their horses out to grass in the month of March, when the grass is pretty well grown; they then take care to have their mares covered, and they cut grass at no other time in the whole year any more than hay; they never give them any straw but to heat them, when they have been some time without discovering an inclination to drink; they live wholly upon barley. The Arab horses are all designed for riding and war ; so, there is reason to believe, were those of the kings of Israel ; and if the present usages of the Arabs prevailed anciently, they were turned out early in the spring, in the month of March, and at other times were nourished with barley. These things seem to determine the time of the king's feedings to March, or at the shooting up of the latter growth of April.

14. 'Sycamore fruit.'— The fig-sycamore tree and its fruit have been noticed under 1 Kings X., with an allusion

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SYCAMORE Figs (Ficus sycomorus).

8 Shall not the land tremble for this, and CHAPTER VIII.

every one mourn that dwelleth therein and 1 By a basket of summer fruit is shewed the propin- it shall rise up wholly as a flood; and it shall

quity of Israel's end. 4. Oppression is reproved. be cast out and drowned, as by the flood of 11 A famine of the word threatened.

Egypt. Thus hath the Lord God shewed unto me: 9° And it shall come to pass in that day, and behold a basket of summer fruit.

saith the Lord God, that I will cause the sun 2 And he said, Amos, what seest thou ? to go down at noon, and I will darken the And I said, A basket of summer fruit. Then

earth in the clear day: said the LORD unto me, The end is come 10 And I will turn your feasts into mournupon my people of Israel; I will not again ing and all your songs into lamentation ; and pass by them any more.

I will bring up sackcloth upon all loins, and 3 And the songs of the temple 'shall be baldness upon every head ; and I will make howlings in that day, saith the Lord GOD : it as the mourning of an only son, and the end there shall be many dead bodies in every place; thereof as a bitter day. they shall cast them forth *with silence.

11 Behold, the days come, saith the 4 Hear this, 0 ye that swallow up the

Lord God, that I will send a famine in the needy, even to make the poor of the land to land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for fail,

water, but of hearing the words of the LORD: 5 Saying, When will the 'new moon be 12 And they shall wander from sea to sea, gone, that we may sell corn ? and the sabbath, and from the north even to the east, they that we may set forth wheat, making the shall run to and fro to seek the word of the ephah small, and the shekel great, and falsi- Lord, and shall not find it. fying the balances by deceit ?

13 In that day shall the fair virgins and 6 That we may buy the poor for ésilver, young men faint for thirst. and the needy for a pair of shoes; yea, and 14 They that swear by the sin of Samaria, sell the refuse of the wheat ?

and say, Thy god, o Dan, liveth ; and, 7 The Lord hath sworn by the excellency The manner of Beer-sheba liveth ; even they of Jacob, Surely I will never forget any of shall fall, and never rise up again. their works.

3 Or, month.

5 Heb. perverting the balances of deceit. 6 Chap. 2. 6.

I Heb, shall howl.

? Heb. be silent.

4 Heb. open.

Verse 1. A basket of summer fruit.'-- The original indicates a basket braided from twigs or wicker-work. One of

of full weight. Or, if we suppose that the payment they received was weighed by themselves, and in their own scales, it is easy to conclude that they falsified the balance to make their payment too great, as they did the ephah to make the measure of corn too small.

9. I will cause the sun to go down at noon.'-— Archbishop Usher understands this literally of an eclipse of the sun, which, according to him, happened in the time of Amos, in the year 3215 A.M., on the day of Pentecost, or of another which occurred ten years after at the Feast of Tabernacles, or, finally, of a third which took place the year after that, during the days of the Passover. The fathers, generally, interpret it of the darkness which took place at our Lord's crucifixion. But Jerome, Theodoret, with the general body of modern interpreters, understand that the expression marks simply the consternation of the Israelites at the calamities which at one fell swoop came

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upon them.

CHAPTER IX.

the posts may shake: and cut them in the 1 The certainty of the desolation. 11 The restoring of head, all of them; and I will slay the last of 1 The certainty of the desolation. 11 The restoring of them with the sword : he that fleeth of thein the tabernacle of David.

shall not flee away, and he that escapeth of I saw the Lord standing upon the altar : and them shall not be delivered. he said, Smite the 'lintel of the door, that 2 Though they dig into hell, thence shall 1 Or, chapiter, or, knop.

2 Or, wound them.

8 Psal. 139. 8, &c.

mine hand take them; though they climb up 9 For, lo, I will command, and I will to heaven, thence will I bring them down : sift the house of Israel among all nations.

3 And though they hide themselves in the like as corn is sifted in a sieve, yet shall not top of Carmel, I will search and take them the least "grain fall upon the earth. out thence; and though they be hid from my 10 All the sinners of my people shall die sight in the bottom of the sea, thence will í by the sword, which say, The evil shall not command the serpent, and he shall bite them : overtake nor prevent us.

4 And though they go into captivity be- 11 1 In that day will I raise up the ''taberfore their enemies, thence will I command nacle of David that is fallen, and close up the sword, and it shall slay them : and ‘I will the breaches thereof; and I will raise up his set mine eyes upon them for evil, and not for ruins, and I will build it as in the days of good.

old : 5 And the Lord God of hosts is he that 12 That they may possess the remnant of toucheth the land, and it shall melt, and all Edom, and of all the heathen, which are that dwell therein shall mourn: and it shall called by my name, saith the LORD that rise up wholly like a flood ; and shall be doeth this. drowned, as by the flood of Egypt.

13 Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, 6 It is he that buildeth his 5 6 7stories in that the plowman shall overtake the reaper, the heaven, and hath founded his "troop in and the treader of grapes him that "soweth the earth; he that 'calleth for the waters of seed; and the mountains shall drop 17 18sweet the sea, and poureth them out upon the face wine, and all the hills shall melt. of the earth: The LORD is his name.

14 And I will bring again the captivity of 7 Are

ye not as children of the Ethiopians my people of Israel, and they shall build the

O children of Israel ? saith the waste cities, and inhabit them; and they shall LORD. Have not I brought up Israel out of plant vineyards, and drink the wine thereof; the land of Egypt ? and the 'Philistines from they shall also make gardens, and eat the Caphtor, and the Syrians from Kir?

fruit of them. 8 Behold, the eyes of the Lord God are 15 And I will plant them upon their land, upon the sinful kingdom, and I will destroy and they shall no more be pulled up out of it from off the face of the earth ; saving that their land which I have given them, saith the I will not utterly destroy the house of Jacob, LORD thy God. saith the LORD.

unto me,

4 Jer. 44. 11. 5 Or, spheres. 6 Heb, ascensions. 11 Heb. cause to move,

12 Heb. stone. 13 Acts 15. 16. 16 Heb, draweth forth.

7 Psal. 104. 3. 8 Or, bundle. * Chap 6. 8. 10 Jer. 47. 4.

14 Heb. hedge, or, wall, 15 Heb. upon whom my name is called. 17 Or, new wine.

19 Joel 3. 18.

Verse 3. Though they hide themselves in the top of presence is chiefly manifested ; and the bundle or collecCarmel, I will search and take them out thence.'-Carmel tion of its offices, its numerous little mean apartments, the is even now, and was still more in ancient times, covered divisions of this earth. (Observations, i. 344.) What is with woods and copses-pines and oaks in the upper parts, here said of the houses in Aleppo is equally true in other and laurels and olives below. These, with the numerous Oriental towns, all the state-rooms and apartments occucaverns which the mountain contains, formed hiding- pied by the family being above ground, while the ground places so extensive and numerous, that the search of any floor is occupied by store-rooms, kitchens, and servants' persons hidden there would be bewildering and all but offices and apartments. hopeless. From this fact arises the emphasis of the ex- 13. The plowman shall overtake the reaper,' etc.pressions here employed.

Similar expressions occur in Lev. xxvi. 5, and appear to 5. The flood of Egypt::- This is an interesting allusion be used as poetical terms to denote the copiousness and to the annual overflowing of the Nile, by which the land long continuance of the barvest and vintage. Harmer is poetically represented as being drowned. This inun- thinks that the expressions involve the intimation that the dation has been noticed under Exod. vii. 15.

vintage and harvest should not be gathered in an imma6. • Buildeth his stories in the heaven,' etc.- Harmer ture condition, as is now, and probably was then, often collects from Jer. xxii. 13, 14, that the chief and most necessary from fear of the Arabs and others, who are in ornamented apartments in the palace which Jehoiakim set the habit of committing ruinous depredations upon the himself to build were upper chambers. He adds, from ripened fruits and corn fields. Thus understood, the Russell, “The chief rooms of the houses of Aleppo at this words of the prophet would express not only abundance, day are those above; the ground-floor being there chiefly but peace and safety. made use of for their horses and servants. Perhaps the - The mountains shall drop sweet wine.'— This is a prophet Amos referred to this circumstance when he spoke fine poetical expression, denoting the abundance of the of the heavens as God's chambers, the most noble and vintages-vineyards being usually planted on the declivisplendid apartments of the palace of God, and where his ties of the hills.

651

OB A DIA H.

The Scriptures afford us no information whatever concerning Obadiah ; and the time in which he lived can only be conjectured from the bearing of his prophecy. The uncertainty concerning the person and history of this prophet has given occasion to a multitude of conjectures, which it is not worth while to repeat, since none of them come to us with the least authority. The opinion most generally entertained by the Jews themselves, that this was the same Obadiah who is so honourably distinguished in the history of Elijah, seems the least probable of any; and some of the more judicious of the Hebrew commentators, as Åben Ezra and Kimchi, candidly confess that the time and history of the prophet are unknown. However, from the matter of the prophecy, which recites the triumph of the Edomites over the desolation of Israel, and their most unbrotherly conduct on that occasion, and proceeds to pronounce their doom, it is generally concluded by modern writers that Obadiah was the contemporary of Jeremiah and Ezekiel, and delivered this prophecy within the interval of the few years which took place between the destruction of Jerusalem by Nebuchadnezzar, and the desolation of Edom by the same prince. The object of the prophecy is substantially the same as that in Jer. xlix. 7-22, and it is observable that the early part of the present book abounds in expressions identical with or similar to those found in that prophecy of Jeremiah ; on which account, as well as because Edom has already engaged a considerable share of our attention, no further observations will now be offered. The book is the shortest in the Old Testament, and from its extreme brevity little can be said with respect to its style and composition. An addiction to the interrogative form of address has been indicated as one of the characteristics of Obadiah ; and it is perceived that, for the sake of emphasis, he repeats the same thought in a different form. His style has been thought to bear considerable resemblance to the more elevated portions of Jeremiah and Zephaniah. Obadiah has a more considerable number of separate commentaries than the extreme brevity of the book would have led one to expect; or, perhaps, in another view, that brevity accounts for the number, many trying their hands upon so small a book who would not adventure upon the larger prophecies. Regii Abdias Propheta explanatus Commentariolo, Cellæ, 1537; Draconitis Commentariolus in Obadiam et Psalmum cxxxvii., Argent., 1538; Castillo Comment. in Abdiam prophetam, 1556; Grynæi, Comm. in Abdiam et Psalmos lxxii. et lxxiv., Basilæ, 1584; Leon, Comment. in Abdiam, etc. Salmantice, 1589; Leuchtii, Erklärung des Propheten Obadias, Darmstd., 1606; Reuteri Comm. in Obadiam, Trajecti ad Viadr., 1617; Gesneri Comm. in Obadiam, Hamb., 1618; Zierlein, Kurze Erklärung des Propheten Obadia, Rotenburg, 1620; Marbury, Commentary on the Prophecy of Obadiah, Lond., 1639; Ellis, Comm. in Obadiam prophetam, Lond., 1641 ; Leusden, Obadias Ebraice et Chaldaice, etc., Ultraj., 1657; Pfeifferi Comm. in Obadiam ..., exhibens vers. Lat. et Examen Comm. Isaac Abarbanelis, etc., Viteb., 1666 ; Crocii Specimen philologicum in prophetam Obadiam, Ebraice, Chaldaice, Syriace, et Arabice, cum Comm. Rabbinorum quorundam, Bremæ, 1673; Leighi Comm. in Prophetam Obadiam, Hafn., 1697; Heupelii Adnotationes philologicæ in Obadiam, Argentor., 1699; Outhof, De Profecy van Obadia, etc., Groningen, 1700; Zeirolden, Die Weissagung des Propheten Obadia, etc., Francf., 1719; Schröer, Der Prophet Obadias aus der Biblischen und Weltlichen Historie erläutert und mit theologischen Anmerkungen, Breslau, 1766; Huppach, Versuch einer neuen übersetzung des Propheten Obadias, Coburg, 1779; Schnurrer, Dissertatio philologica in Obadiam, Tubing., 1787; Plum, Observationes in textum et versiones, maximè Græcas, Obadiae et Habacuci, Hauniæ, 1796 ; Holzapfel, Obadiah, neu übersetzt und erläutert, Rinteln, 1798; Venema, Prælectiones in Obadiam, cum Notis J. H. Verschuirii et J. A. Lotze, in Verschuirii Opusculis, Ultraj., 1810; Hendewerk, Obadia prophetue Oraculum in Idumcos, etc., Regiomonti, 1836.

652

1 The destruction of Edom, 3 for their pride, 10 and 10 9 For thy 'violence against thy brother for their wrong unto Jacob. 17 The salvation and

Jacob shame shall cover thee, and thou shalt victory of Jacob.

be cut off for ever. HE vision 11 In the day that thou stoodest on the of Obadiah. other side, in the day that the strangers Thus saith carried away captive his forces, and fothe

Lord reigners entered into his gates, and cast lots God

con- upon Jerusalem, even thou wast as one of

them. Edom; 'We 12 But "thou shouldest not have looked have heard a on the day of thy brother in the day that he rumour from

became a stranger ; neither shouldest thou the LORD, have rejoiced over the children of Judah in and an am

the day of their destruction ; neither shouldest bassador is thou have "spoken proudly in the day of sent among distress. the heathen, 13 Thou shouldest not have entered into Arise ye, and the gate of my people in the day of their let us rise up | calamity ; yea, thou shouldest not have looked

against her on their affliction in the day of their calamity, in battle.

nor have laid hands on their 18 substance in 2 Behold, I have made thee small among the day of their calamity ; the heathen : thou art greatly despised.

14 Neither shouldest thou have stood in 3 | The pride of thine heart hath deceived the crossway, to cut off those of his that did thee, thou that dwellest in the clefts of the escape ; neither shouldest thou have "derock, whose habitation is high ; that saith in livered up those of his that did remain in the his heart, Who shall bring me down to the day of distress. ground?

15 For the day of the Lord is near upon 4 Though thou exalt thyself as the eagle, all the heathen : as thou hast done, it shall and though thou set thy nest among the be done unto thee: thy reward shall return stars, thence will I bring thee down, saith the upon thine own head. LORD.

16 For as ye have drunk upon my holy 5 If "thieves came to thee, if robbers by mountain, so shall all the heathen drink connight, (how art thou cut off!) would they not tinually, yea, they shall drink, and they shall have stolen till they had enough? if the grape- Oswallow down, and they shall be as though gatherers came to thee, would they not leave they had not been. *some grapes ?

17 9 But upon mount Zion shall be ''de6 How are the things of Esau searched out ! | liverance, and there shall be holiness; and how are his hidden things sought up!

the house of Jacob shall possess their pos7 All the men of thy confederacy have sessions. brought thee even to the border : Sthe men 18 And the house of Jacob shall be a that were at peace with thee have deceived fire, and the house of Joseph a flame, and thee, and prevailed against thee; "they that the house of Esau for stubble, and they eat thy bread have laid a wound under thee: shall kindle in them, and devour them; and there is none understanding 'in him.

there shall not be any remaining of the 8 °Shall I not in that day, saith the house of Esau ; for the Lord hath spoken LORD, even destroy the wise men out of it. Edom, and understanding out of the mount 19 And they of the south shall possess the of Esau ?

mount of Esau ; and they of the plain the 9 And thy mighty men, O Teman, shall Philistines : and they shall possess the fields be dismayed, to the end that every one of Ephraim, and the fields of Samaria : and of the mount of Esau may be cut off by Benjamin shall

Benjamin shall possess Gilead. slaughter.

20 And the captivity of this host of the

16

1 Jer. 49, 14.

5 Heb. the men of thy peace. % Jer, 49, 16.

3 Jer. 49. 9.

4 Or, gleanings. Heb. the men of thy bread.

9 Gen. 27. 41. Ezek. 35. 5. 'Amos 1. 11. 7 Or, of it. 8 Isa. 29. 14. Jer. 49. 7. 12 Heb, magnified thy mouth.

13 Or, forces. 10 Or, carried away his substance. 11 Or, do not behold, &c. i Or, shut xp. 15 Ezek. 35, 15. 16 Or, sup up.

18 Or, it shall be holy. 17 Or, they that escape.

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