The Vision of the Ripe Fruit
8 This is what the Lord God showed me: I saw a basket of summer fruit. 2 He said to me, “Amos, what do you see?”
I said, “A basket of summer fruit.”
Then the Lord said to me, “The end[a] has come to my people Israel. I will not ignore their sins anymore. 3 Their temple songs will become funeral songs.” This is what the Lord God said. “There will be dead bodies everywhere. In silence, people will take out the dead bodies and throw them onto the pile.[b]”
Merchants Only Want to Make Money
4 Listen to me, you who trample on helpless people.
You are trying to destroy the poor of this country.
5 You merchants say,
“When will the New Moon be over so that we can sell grain?
When will the Sabbath be over
so that we can bring out more wheat to sell?
We can raise the price
and make the measure smaller.[c]
We can fix the scales
and cheat the people.[d]
6 The poor cannot pay their loans,
so we will buy them as slaves.
We will buy those helpless people
for the price of a pair of sandals.
Oh, and we can sell the wheat
that was spilled on the floor.”
7 The Lord made a promise. He used his name, “Pride of Jacob,” and made this promise:
“I will never forget what those people did.
8 There will be an earthquake
that will shake the whole land because of what they did.
Everyone living there will cry for those who died.
The land will be tossed around.
The whole land will rise and fall like the Nile River in Egypt.”
9 The Lord God also said,
“At that time I will make the sun set at noon
and make the land dark on a clear day.
10 I will change your festivals into days of crying for the dead.
All your songs will be songs of sadness for those who are dead.
I will put mourning clothes on every body
and baldness on every head.[e]
I will cause mourning everywhere,
like that for an only son who has died.
It will be a very bitter end.”
A Famine of God’s Word
11 The Lord God says,
“Look, the days are coming
when I will cause a famine in the land.
The people will not be hungry for bread.
They will not be thirsty for water.
No, they will be hungry for words from the Lord.
12 The people will wander around the country,
from the Dead Sea to the Mediterranean Sea,
and from the north part of the country to the east.
They will go back and forth looking for a message from the Lord,
but they will not find it.
13 At that time the beautiful young men and women
will become weak from thirst.
14 They made promises by the sin of Samaria,[f]
They said, ‘Dan,[g] as surely as your god lives, we promise ….’
And they said, ‘As surely as the god of Beersheba[h] lives, we promise ….’
But they will fall
and never get up again.”
- Amos 8:2 end This Hebrew word sounds like the word for “summer fruit.”
- Amos 8:3 In silence … the pile Or “People will be saying, ‘Hush!’” See Amos 6:10.
- Amos 8:5 We … smaller Literally, “We will make the ephah small and the shekel large.”
- Amos 8:5 We … people Literally, “Cheat with lying balances.”
- Amos 8:10 baldness … head People shaved their heads to show that they were very sad or upset.
- Amos 8:14 sin of Samaria The calf god in Samaria.
- Amos 8:14 Dan One of Israel’s holy places was in this city.
- Amos 8:14 Beersheba A town in Judah. This name means “well of the oath.”