The words of Amos, who was among the herdsmen of Tekoa, which he saw concerning Israel in the days of Uzziah king of Judah…
Amos was not ashamed of his descent. He was not a farmer, but a farm-labourer. Who cares to be on very close intimacy with a field-hand, or a cow-herd? To a little outdoor work Amos added the process of cleaning and preparing the fruit, either for preservation or for sale. Whilst he was doing his farm-work and attending to his fruit, a blast from heaven struck his deeper consciousness, and he stood up a prophet. The Lord will bring His prophets just as He pleases, and from what place He chooses. Amos was a field-hand, and yet he was fearless; he was all the more fearless because he was a field-hand. A farmer could not have been so fearless. Amos was a farm-labourer, yet he was equal to the occasion. Education is never equal to anything that is supremely great. There are times in human history when inspiration must go to the front — talent must go behind, genius must go into the first place. When we are inspired we forget our rags. When God calls. let not man despise. God's elections are startling. Amos begins where all rude, energetic minds begin; they begin in denunciation. Judgment seems to be a natural work for them to conduct. Amos issues his judgment against Damascus, Gaza, Tyrus, Edom, Ammon, Moab, Judah, Israel, — all round the circle that judgment-fire sparkles and blazes. It seems so much easier to denounce than to discriminate. Even young prophets began with thunder and lightning. Amos again and again says, "I will send a fire." And the nobles were lying on divans of ivory, having corrupted themselves to the point of rottenness. There are times in human history when only the disinfectant that can work the real miracle is fire. Fire never fails. We need voices of this kind; they help to keep the average of human history well up to the mark.
(Joseph Parker, D. D.)
Parallel VersesKJV: The words of Amos, who was among the herdmen of Tekoa, which he saw concerning Israel in the days of Uzziah king of Judah, and in the days of Jeroboam the son of Joash king of Israel, two years before the earthquake.
WEB: The words of Amos, who was among the herdsmen of Tekoa, which he saw concerning Israel in the days of Uzziah king of Judah, and in the days of Jeroboam the son of Joash king of Israel, two years before the earthquake.