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Amos 8

             Prophetic Vision Narrative(4th in a series of 5).
             Begins a vision that Amos is having.
             The Lord shows Amos "a basket of summer fruit".
             3. Summer fruit most likely has some type of historical or cultural significance.
             III. Verse 2.
             1. The Lord asks Amos what he sees.
             2. Amos replies that he sees a basket of summer fruit.
             3. The Lord tells Amos that the end has come for Israel and that he will no longer spare them.
             IV. Verse 3.
             1. The Lord tells Amos that the songs of the palace will turn to wailing and that many will die and that the palace will be silent.
             2. The palace was most likely the palace of the king.
             3. The palace and temples of Bethel.
             Amos is the third of the Minor Prophets. His name means "burden" or "burden bearer," a fitting name in the light of the grievous message which he had to deliver to Israel. Jewish tradition says that he was called Amos because he stammered or was slow of speech, but this is doubtful. He belonged to the Southern Kingdom, the Kingdom of Judah, although his prophetic ministry was carried out in the Kingdom of the North, the Kingdom of Israel. Amos was, as he himself says, a native of Tekoah, a small town of Judah, situated on a hill about five miles south of Bethlehem, nine or ten miles south of Jerusalem. In 1:1 and again in 7:14 he is described as a herdsman. In 7:14 he tells us also that he cultivated sycamore trees, an inferior fig which was a common food among the poor. His occupation would have taken him throughout the "wilderness of Tekoah" where David may have tended sheep. The influence of Amos" surroundings is traceable in his book. Accustomed to the solitary, simple, and strenuous life of the desert, he disdains the idle, pampered lives of the wealthy nobles and their wives in the cities of the North. (3:12; 4:1; 6:4). His illustrations are often drawn from the sights and sounds with which he was familiar in his desert calling. Amos is said to have prophesied "in the days of Uzziah, King of Judah, and in the days of Jeroboam, the son of Joash, King of Israel" (1:1).

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