Amos 1:5
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
I will break down the gate of Damascus; I will destroy the king who is in the Valley of Aven and the one who holds the scepter in Beth Eden. The people of Aram will go into exile to Kir," says the LORD.

New Living Translation
I will break down the gates of Damascus and slaughter the people in the valley of Aven. I will destroy the ruler in Beth-eden, and the people of Aram will go as captives to Kir," says the LORD.

English Standard Version
I will break the gate-bar of Damascus, and cut off the inhabitants from the Valley of Aven, and him who holds the scepter from Beth-eden; and the people of Syria shall go into exile to Kir,” says the LORD.

New American Standard Bible
"I will also break the gate bar of Damascus, And cut off the inhabitant from the valley of Aven, And him who holds the scepter, from Beth-eden; So the people of Aram will go exiled to Kir," Says the LORD.

King James Bible
I will break also the bar of Damascus, and cut off the inhabitant from the plain of Aven, and him that holdeth the sceptre from the house of Eden: and the people of Syria shall go into captivity unto Kir, saith the LORD.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
I will break down the gates of Damascus. I will cut off the ruler from the Valley of Aven, and the one who wields the scepter from Beth-eden. The people of Aram will be exiled to Kir. The LORD has spoken.

International Standard Version
I will shatter the gate bars of Damascus, and I will cut off the residents of the Aven Valley, along with the one who holds the scepter from Beth-eden; and the people of Aram will be exiled to Kir," says the LORD.

NET Bible
I will break the bar on the gate of Damascus. I will remove the ruler from Wicked Valley, the one who holds the royal scepter from Beth Eden. The people of Aram will be deported to Kir." The LORD has spoken!

New Heart English Bible
I will break the bar of Damascus, and cut off the inhabitant from the valley of Aven, and him who holds the scepter from Beth Eden; and the people of Syria shall go into captivity to Kir," says the LORD.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
I will break the bars [on the gates] of Damascus. I will cut off those living in Aven Valley and the one who holds the scepter in Beth Eden. The people of Aram will go into captivity at Kir. The LORD has said this.

JPS Tanakh 1917
And I will break the bar of Damascus, and cut off the inhabitant from Bikath-Aven, and him that holdeth the sceptre from Beth-eden; and the people of Aram shall go into captivity unto Kir, saith the LORD.

New American Standard 1977
“I will also break the gate bar of Damascus,
            And cut off the inhabitant from the valley of Aven,
            And him who holds the scepter, from Beth-eden;
            So the people of Aram will go exiled to Kir,”
            Says the LORD.

Jubilee Bible 2000
I will also break the bar of Damascus and cut off the inhabitants of the plain of Aven and him that holds the sceptre from the house of Eden; and the people of Syria shall go into captivity unto Kir.

King James 2000 Bible
I will break also the gate of Damascus, and cut off the inhabitant from the plain of Aven, and him that holds the scepter from the house of Eden: and the people of Syria shall go into captivity unto Kir, says the LORD.

American King James Version
I will break also the bar of Damascus, and cut off the inhabitant from the plain of Aven, and him that holds the scepter from the house of Eden: and the people of Syria shall go into captivity to Kir, said the LORD.

American Standard Version
And I will break the bar of Damascus, and cut off the inhabitant from the valley of Aven, and him that holdeth the sceptre from the house of Eden; and the people of Syria shall go into captivity unto Kir, saith Jehovah.

Douay-Rheims Bible
And I will break the bar of Damascus: and I will cut off the inhabitants from the plain of the idol, and him that holdeth the sceptre from the house of pleasure: and the people of Syria shall be carried away to Cyrene, saith the Lord.

Darby Bible Translation
And I will break the bar of Damascus, and cut off the inhabitant from the valley of Aven, and him that holdeth the sceptre from Beth-Eden; and the people of Syria shall go into captivity unto Kir, saith Jehovah.

English Revised Version
And I will break the bar of Damascus, and cut off the inhabitant from the valley of Aven, and him that holdeth the sceptre from the house of Eden: and the people of Syria shall go into captivity unto Kir, saith the LORD.

Webster's Bible Translation
I will break also the bar of Damascus, and cut off the inhabitant from the plain of Aven, and him that holdeth the scepter from the house of Eden: and the people of Syria shall go into captivity to Kir, saith the LORD.

World English Bible
I will break the bar of Damascus, and cut off the inhabitant from the valley of Aven, and him who holds the scepter from the house of Eden; and the people of Syria shall go into captivity to Kir," says Yahweh.

Young's Literal Translation
And I have broken the bar of Damascus, And cut off the inhabitant from Bikat-Aven, And a holder of a sceptre from Beth-Eden, And removed have been the people of Aram to Kir, said Jehovah.
Study Bible
Judgment on Israel's Neighbors
4"So I will send fire upon the house of Hazael And it will consume the citadels of Ben-hadad. 5"I will also break the gate bar of Damascus, And cut off the inhabitant from the valley of Aven, And him who holds the scepter, from Beth-eden; So the people of Aram will go exiled to Kir," Says the LORD. 6Thus says the LORD, "For three transgressions of Gaza and for four I will not revoke its punishment, Because they deported an entire population To deliver it up to Edom.…
Cross References
2 Kings 16:9
So the king of Assyria listened to him; and the king of Assyria went up against Damascus and captured it, and carried the people of it away into exile to Kir, and put Rezin to death.

Isaiah 22:6
Elam took up the quiver With the chariots, infantry and horsemen; And Kir uncovered the shield.

Jeremiah 51:30
The mighty men of Babylon have ceased fighting, They stay in the strongholds; Their strength is exhausted, They are becoming like women; Their dwelling places are set on fire, The bars of her gates are broken.

Lamentations 2:9
Her gates have sunk into the ground, He has destroyed and broken her bars. Her king and her princes are among the nations; The law is no more. Also, her prophets find No vision from the LORD.

Ezekiel 27:23
"Haran, Canneh, Eden, the traders of Sheba, Asshur and Chilmad traded with you.

Amos 9:7
"Are you not as the sons of Ethiopia to Me, O sons of Israel?" declares the LORD. "Have I not brought up Israel from the land of Egypt, And the Philistines from Caphtor and the Arameans from Kir?
Treasury of Scripture

I will break also the bar of Damascus, and cut off the inhabitant from the plain of Aven, and him that holds the scepter from the house of Eden: and the people of Syria shall go into captivity to Kir, said the LORD.

break.

Isaiah 43:14 Thus said the LORD, your redeemer, the Holy One of Israel; For your …

Jeremiah 50:36 A sword is on the liars; and they shall dote: a sword is on her mighty …

Jeremiah 51:30 The mighty men of Babylon have declined to fight, they have remained …

Lamentations 2:9 Her gates are sunk into the ground; he has destroyed and broken her …

Nahum 3:13 Behold, your people in the middle of you are women: the gates of …

the plain of Aven. or, Bikath-aven. Probably Heliopolis, now Baalbek, situated between Libanus and Antilibanus,

the house of Eden. or, Beth-eden. Probably the village of Eden, in Mount Lebanon, marks the site of this place. It is delightfully situated by the side of a most rich and cultivated valley, contains about

the people.

Amos 9:7 Are you not as children of the Ethiopians to me, O children of Israel? …

2 Kings 16:9 And the king of Assyria listened to him: for the king of Assyria …

(5) I will break . . .--The "bar" means the bolt of iron or brass with which the city was defended. But it is possible that it may be used of persons, i.e., princes or leaders (comp. Hosea 4:18; Hosea 11:6); and this seems confirmed by the parallelism. The plain or valley cleft between Libanus and Antilibanus is still called by the Arabs by a name closely resembling the rendering in the margin, "the valley." It is probable that the word rendered "vanity," (aven) is simply a Masoretic reading, and not what Amos intended. It is better to follow the LXX. and read the word On (as in Ezekiel 30:17), the reference being to the Temple of Baalbec, then in ruins, the Syrian Heliopolis. (Comp. Hosea 4:15.)[16] The site of Beth-eden (house of Eden) cannot be satisfactorily determined. Kir is the region of the river Cyrus, or, perhaps, the E. of the Upper Euphrates (see Amos 9:7). (2Kings 16:9, we see fulfilment of this doom.)

[16] On the other hand the Masoretic reading seems to have been suggested (if not confirmed) by Amos 5:5, where LXX. read aven.

Verse 5. - The bar which secured the gate of the city (1 Kings 4:13; Jeremiah 51:30; Nahum 3:13). Breaking the bar is equivalent to laying the place open to the enemy. From the plain of Avon; Vulgate, de campo idoli; Hebrew, bikath-Aven; Septuagint, ἐκ πεδίου Ων; better, from the valley of Aven, or vanity, perhaps so called analogously with Hosea's naming Bethel, Bethaven, "House of God" and "House of vanity" (Hosea 5:8). Robinson ('Bibl. Res.,' 677) and Pusey refer the name to a valley between Lebanon and Antilibanus, a continuation of the Arabah, still called Bukaa, in the middle of which stood Baalbec, "the Temple of the sun of the valley," called Heliopolis by Greek and Roman writers (see 'Classical Museum,' 3:136). The LXX. Renders "On" in Genesis 41:45 by "Heliopolis;" and On and Baal being both titles of the sun, and indeed synonymous, the introduction of "On" into this passage may be accounted for. Him that holdeth the sceptre. The king and princes, as ver. 8. From the house of Eden; Hebrew, Beth-Eden, "House of delight;" Vulgate, de domo voluptatis; Septuagint, ἐξ ἀνδρῶν Ξαῥῤάν, "out of the men of Charran." This last rendering arises from considering that the reference was to the Eden of Genesis 2, which the translators placed in the region of Haran. The place in the text Keil supposes to be the Paradisus of the Greeks, which Ptolemy (5:15, 20) locates southeast of Laodicea. Schrader suggests a place on the banks of the middle Euphrates between Balis and Biredschich called Bit-Adini in inscriptions of Asurnasirhabal and Salmanassur II. But this seems to be a wrong locality (see 'Die Keilinschriften,' p. 327). The passage means that all the inhabitants of valley and city, king and peasant, shall be cut off. Shall go into captivity. The word implies that the land shall be "stripped" or "bared" of its inhabitants. Wholesale deportation had not hitherto been common in these regions. Kir has been identified with the country on the banks of the river Kar, which flows into the Araxes on the southwest of the Caspian Sea. It forms part of the territory known as Transcaucasia. From this region the Syrians originally emigrated (Amos 9:7), and back to this land a large body were carried when Tiglath-Pileser, some fifty years later, killed Rezin and sacked Damascus, as related in 2 Kings 16:9. Saith the Lord. This is the solemn confirmation of the prophet's announcement, and recurs in vers. 8, 15 and Amos 2:3. I will break also the bar of Damascus,.... Or bars, the singular for the plural, by which the gates of the city were barred; and, being broken, the gates would be easily opened, and way made for the enemy to pass into the city and spoil it; or it may signify the whole strength and all the fortifications of it. So the Targum,

"I will break the strength of Damascus:''

and cut off the inhabitant from the plain of Aven; or, "of an idol", as the Vulgate Latin version. It is thought to be some place where idols were worshipped by the Syrians; their gods were the gods of the valleys, which they denied the God of Israel to be, 1 Kings 20:23. Mr. Maundrell (g) says, that near Damascus there is a plain still called the valley of Bocat, and which he thinks is the same with this Bicataven, as it is in the Hebrew text; and which lies between Libanus and Antilibanus, near to the city, of Heliopolis and the Septuagint and Arabic versions here call this valley the plain of On, which Theodoret interprets of an idol called On. Father Calmet (h) takes it to be the same with Heliopolis, now called Balbec, or Baalbeck, the valley of Baal; where was a famous temple dedicated to the sun, the magnificent remains whereof are still at this day visible. Balbec is mentioned by the Arabians as the wonder of Syria; and one of their lexicographers says it is three days' journey from Damascus, where are wonderful foundations, and magnificent vestiges of antiquity, and palaces with marble columns, such as in the whole world are nowhere else to be seen; and such of our European travellers as have visited it are so charmed with what they beheld there, that they are at a loss how to express their admiration. On the southwest of the town, which stands in a "delightful plain" on the west foot of Antilibanus, is a Heathen temple, with the remains of some other edifices, and, among the rest, of a magnificent palace (i): Some late travellers (k) into these parts tell us, that

"upon a rising ground near the northeast extremity of this "plain", and immediately under Antilibanus, is pleasantly situated the city of Balbec, between Tripoli of Syria, and Damascus, and about sixteen hours distant from each.----This plain of Bocat (they say) might by a little care be made one of the richest and most fertile spots in Syria; for it is more fertile than the celebrated vale of Damascus, and better watered than the rich plains of Esdraelon and Rama. In its present neglected state it produces grain, some good grapes, but very little wood.--It extends in length from Balbec almost to the sea; its direction is from northeast by north, to southwest by south; and its breadth from Libanus to Antilibanus is guessed to be in few places more than twelve miles, or less than six.''

It seems to be the same with Bicatlebanon, or the valley of Lebanon, Joshua 11:17; and with that which Strabo (l) calls the hollow plain; the breadth of which to the sea (he says) is twenty five miles, and the length from the sea to the midland is double that:

and him that holdeth the sceptre from the house of Eden; that is, the king from his pleasure house; or it may be understood of the name of some place in Syria, where the kings of it used sometimes to be, and had their palace there, called Betheden; and it seems there is still a place near Damascus, on Mount Libanus, called Eden, as the above traveller says; and Calmet (m) takes it to be the same that is here spoken of:

and the people of Syria shall go into captivity unto Kir, saith the Lord; which last clause is added for the certainty of it, and accordingly it was punctually fulfilled; for in the times of Rezin, which was about fifty years after this prophecy of Amos, though Kimchi says but twenty five, Tiglathpileser king of Assyria came up against Damascus, took it, and carried the people captive to Kir, 2 Kings 16:9. The Targum and Vulgate Latin version call it Cyrene, which some understand of Cyrene in Egypt; see Acts 2:10; but this cannot be, since it was in the hands of the king of Assyria; but rather Kir in Media is meant; see Isaiah 22:6; which was under his dominion; and so Josephus says (n), that he carried captive the inhabitants of Damascus into Upper Media.

(g) Journey from Aleppo to Jerusalem, p. 119, 120. Ed. 7. (h) Dictionary, in the word "Heliopolis". (i) Universal History, vol. 2. p. 266. (k) Authors of "The Ruins of Balbec". (l) Geograph. l. 16. p. 519. (m) Dictionary, in the word "Eden". (n) Antiqu. l. 9. c. 12. sect. 3.5. bar of Damascus—that is, the bar of its gates (compare Jer 51:30).

the inhabitant—singular for plural, "inhabitants." Henderson, because of the parallel, "him that holdeth the scepter," translates, "the ruler." But the parallelism is that of one clause complementing the other, "the inhabitant" or subject here answering to "him that holdeth the scepter" or ruler there, both ruler and subject alike being cut off.

Aven—the same as Oon or Un, a delightful valley, four hours' journey from Damascus, towards the desert. Proverbial in the East as a place of delight [Josephus Abassus]. It is here parallel to "Eden," which also means "pleasantness"; situated at Lebanon. As Josephus Abassus is a doubtful authority, perhaps the reference may be rather to the valley between Lebanon and Anti-Lebanon, called El-Bekaa, where are the ruins of the Baal-bek temple of the sun; so the Septuagint renders it On, the same name as the city in Egypt bears, dedicated to the sun-worship (Ge 41:45; Heliopolis, "the city of the sun," Eze 30:17, Margin). It is termed by Amos "the valley of Aven," or "vanity," from the worship of idols in it.

Kir—a region subject to Assyria (Isa 22:6) in Iberia, the same as that called now in Armenian Kur, lying by the river Cyrus which empties itself into the Caspian Sea. Tiglath-pileser fulfilled this prophecy when Ahaz applied for help to him against Rezin king of Syria, and the Assyrian king took Damascus, slew Rezin, and carried away its people captive to Kir.1:18-21 There shall be abundant Divine influences, and the gospel will spread speedily into the remotest corners of the earth. These events are predicted under significant emblems; there is a day coming, when every thing amiss shall be amended. The fountain of this plenty is in the house of God, whence the streams take rise. Christ is this Fountain; his sufferings, merit, and grace, cleanse, refresh, and make fruitful. Gospel grace, flowing from Christ, shall reach to the Gentile world, to the most remote regions, and make them abound in fruits of righteousness; and from the house of the Lord above, from his heavenly temple, flows all the good we daily taste, and hope to enjoy eternally.
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