Vision of the Locusts
Verse 1 – Thus the Lord God showed me: Behold, He formed locusts swarms at the beginning of the late crop; indeed it was the late crop after the kings mowings.
Verse 2 – And so it was, when they had finished eating the grass of the land, that I said: “O Lord God, forgive, I pray! Oh, that Jacob may stand, for he is small!”
After the death of Jeroboam II, the land was so devastated, that they went to Pul, king of Assyria for help.
Verse 3 – So the Lord relented concerning this, “It shall not be,” said the Lord.
In the Bible locusts are a common image of God’s wrath. Locusts were one of the plagues of Egypt. In this case, Israel was not struck with a locust plague. Amos merely saw it in a vision, in response to the pleas, God relented and no actual locusts plague came.
Verse 4 – Thus the Lord God showed me: Behold, the Lord God called for conflict by fire, and it consumed the great deep and devoured the territory. This vision of fire is probably symbolic of a ferocious drought, but in response to Amos’s intercession, it did not happen.
Verse 5 – The I said: “O Lord God, cease, I pray! Oh, that Jacob may stand, for he is small!”
Verse 6 – So the Lord relented concerning this. “This also shall not be,” said the Lord God.
Do you see how much of a difference your prayer to the Most High can make? Why would any one make prayer a last resort? This should be a reminder for all believers to pray for our nation so that God might have mercy on us all.
Verse 7 – Thus He showed me: Behold, the Lord stood on a wall made with a plumb line, with a plumb line in His hand.
Verse 8 – And the Lord said to me, “Amos, what do you see?” and I said, “A plumb line.” Then the Lord said: “Behold, I am setting a plumb line in the midst of My people Israel; I will not pass by them anymore.
Verse 9 – The high places of Isaac shall be desolate, and the sanctuaries of Israel shall be laid waste. I will rise with a sword against the house of Jeroboam.”
A plumb line is a device used to ensure the straightness of a wall. A wall that is not straight will eventually collapse. God’s word is our “plumb line.” The high places of Isaac are about to be destroyed and made desolate. This high place was Beer-Sheba, where Isaac had built an altar to the Lord, but had been abused by idolatrous uses – defiled.
Verse 10 – Then Amaziah the priest of Bethel sent to Jeroboam the king of Israel, saying, “Amos has conspired against you in the midst of the house of Israel. The land is not able to bear all his words.
Prophets like Amos were often seen as traitors and conspirators because they spoke out against the king and his advisers.
Verse 11 – “For thus Amos has said; ‘ Jeroboam shall die by the sword, and Israel shall surely be led away captive from their own land.’ ”
Verse 12 – Then Amaziah said to Amos: “Go you seer! Flee the land of Judah. There eat bread, and there prophesy.
Verse 13 – But never again prophesy at Bethel, for it is the king’s sanctuary, and it is the royal residence.”
When God’s people speak the truth, there will be those who are in opposition because they would rather live in their sin. We see this strongly being done in our society today. They think that God has changed along with their thinking that “anything goes.” “News flash!” God has not changed! Sin is still sin and wrong is still wrong according to His Word!
Verse 14 – Then Amos answered, and said to Amaziah: “I was no prophet, nor was I a son of a prophet, but I was a herdsman and a tender of Sycamore fruit.
Verse 15 – The the Lord took me as I followed the flock, and the Lord said to me, ‘Go, prophesy to My people Israel. ‘
Verse 16 – Now therefore, hear the word of the Lord: You say, ‘Do not prophesy against Israel, and do not spout against the house of Isaac.’
Verse 17 – “Therefore thus says the Lord; ‘Your wife shall be a harlot in the city; your sons and daughters shall fall by the sword; your land shall be divided by survey line; you shall die in a defiled land; and Israel shall surely be led away captive from his own land.’ ”
Amos let this priest know that God was the One which called him to be a prophet. And while Amos was telling Amaziah the priest about his own background. Amos let loose on him about what was going to happen to him and is own family.
Watch whom you criticize about being called by God. Only God and that person know what is in their own heart.