1. Why was the Lord going to send a fire upon Moab?
“(1) Thus saith the LORD; For three transgressions of Moab, and for four, I will not turn away the punishment thereof; because he burned the bones of the king of Edom into lime: (2) But I will send a fire upon Moab, and it shall devour the palaces of Kerioth: and Moab shall die with tumult, with shouting, and with the sound of the trumpet: (3) And I will cut off the judge from the midst thereof, and will slay all the princes thereof with him, saith the LORD” (Amos 2:1-3).
- The Moabites were descendants of Lot and his firstborn daughter (Genesis 19:30-38).
- As was addressed in chapter one with regarding Damascus, Gaza, Tyrus, Edom, and Ammon… “For three transgressions… for four, I will not turn away”.
- God does not acquit the wicked (Numbers 14:18 and Nahum 1:3).
- The Moabites burning the bones of the king of Edom into lime (II Kings 3:1-27).
- Kerioth was a Moabite city (Jeremiah 48:24).
- Moab dying with tumult, shouting, and the sound of the trumpet is language indicative of an army invasion (Ezekiel 33:4, Hosea 10:14, and Zephaniah 1:16).
- Cutting off the judge and the princes (Jeremiah 48:7; 48:25).
- Even when God punished Israel, He included the leadership that brought about the errors therein (Isaiah 3:1-4 and Isaiah 9:8-19).
2. What did Judah despise that brought fire from the Lord upon them?
His law: “(4) Thus saith the LORD; For three transgressions of Judah, and for four, I will not turn away the punishment thereof; because they have despised the law of the LORD, and have not kept his commandments, and their lies caused them to err, after the which their fathers have walked: (5) But I will send a fire upon Judah, and it shall devour the palaces of Jerusalem” (Amos 2:4-5).
- Judah “despised the law of the LORD” and did not keep His commandments (II Kings 17:13, II Kings 17:19, and Jeremiah 11:10).
- The result of disobedience was sure to be punishment (Leviticus 26:14-30, Joshua 1:18, Joshua 24:20, Isaiah 1:20, Isaiah 3:11, and I Samuel 12:14-15).
- They were led to err through lies (Jeremiah 23:25-32).
- They went to walking in the erring ways of their fathers (II Chronicles 30:1-8).
- Jerusalem devoured and the palaces on fire (II Chronicles 36:14-21).
3. What was Israel doing to the righteous, the poor, the meek, and towards maids?
“(6) Thus saith the LORD; For three transgressions of Israel, and for four, I will not turn away the punishment thereof; because they sold the righteous for silver, and the poor for a pair of shoes; (7) That pant after the dust of the earth on the head of the poor, and turn aside the way of the meek: and a man and his father will go in unto the same maid, to profane my holy name” (Amos 2:6-7).
- They sold the righteous (Joel 3:3 and Amos 5:12).
- They sold the poor (Amos 8:4-6).
- They essentially stepped on the poor to gain advantage (Amos 4:1).
- Fathers and sons shared women (Ezekiel 22:11; cf. Leviticus 18:8 and Leviticus 20:11).
- By being God’s children, and yet acting in an ungodly manner, they had profaned the name of the Lord (II Samuel 11:1-12:14).
4. What were the children of Israel doing before the altar and in the house of their god?
“And they lay themselves down upon clothes laid to pledge by every altar, and they drink the wine of the condemned in the house of their god” (Amos 2:8).
- So, they were making beds before the altar with clothing that was a pledge and they were drinking wine thereat (Isaiah 28:7-8).
- Regarding the clothes laid to pledge, see: Deuteronomy 24:12-17
- They made their beds with the only belongings of the poor that they had to sleep (cf. Exodus 22:26-27).
- Regarding the wine of the condemned, maybe this is what Solomon talked about in Proverbs 31:6-7
5. What did God remind them of concerning the Amorites, Egypt, and the raising up of their sons?
“(9) Yet destroyed I the Amorite before them, whose height was like the height of the cedars, and he was strong as the oaks; yet I destroyed his fruit from above, and his roots from beneath. (10) Also I brought you up from the land of Egypt, and led you forty years through the wilderness, to possess the land of the Amorite. (11) And I raised up of your sons for prophets, and of your young men for Nazarites. Is it not even thus, O ye children of Israel? saith the LORD” (Amos 2:9-11).
- God destroyed Amorite before them (Joshua 3:10).
- God brought them up from the land of Egypt (Judges 6:9).
- God gave them the land of the Amorite (Exodus 34:11).
- The points above (Psalms 135:10-12).
- Forty years in the wilderness (Joshua 5:6).
- God raised up prophets of their sons (Amos 7:14-15).
- God made Nazarites of their young men (Numbers 6:1-8).
6. What had the children of Israel done to the Nazarites and the prophets?
“But ye gave the Nazarites wine to drink; and commanded the prophets, saying, Prophesy not” (Amos 2:12).
- The point here is, they worked against what God gave them in those set aside to aid them (I Kings 19:10, II Chronicles 24:19-22, II Chronicles 36:16, Matthew 5:10-12, Luke 11:47-51, and Acts 7:52).
7. Was the Lord going to overlook all the wrongs we are reading about?
No: “(13) Behold, I am pressed under you, as a cart is pressed that is full of sheaves. (14) Therefore the flight shall perish from the swift, and the strong shall not strengthen his force, neither shall the mighty deliver himself: (15) Neither shall he stand that handleth the bow; and he that is swift of foot shall not deliver himself: neither shall he that rideth the horse deliver himself. (16) And he that is courageous among the mighty shall flee away naked in that day, saith the LORD” (Amos 2:13-16).
- Verse 13 is translated like this in the ASV 1901: “Behold, I will press you in your place, as a cart presseth that is full of sheaves.”
- Both the wording of the KJV can be a true point (Hebrews 10:26-31) as well as the ASV 1901 (Isaiah 63:3 and Lamentations 1:15).
- The context is saying that these sinners were going to be overcome no matter how fast they were, strong they were, capable soldiers they were, etc. (Isaiah 10:3-4). If God decides to punish, that’s it (Genesis 6:1-9:17, Genesis 11:1-9, Leviticus 10:1-2, Numbers 15:32-36, Numbers 21:1-9, Numbers 25:1-9, Deuteronomy 28:15-68, I Samuel 15:1-35, II Samuel 6:1-7, II Samuel 24:1-25, II Kings 17:7-18:12, Psalms 33:16-17, Jeremiah 9:23-26, Jeremiah 29:1-23, I Corinthians 10:22, Hebrews 2:1-3, and Hebrews 12:25).
- Think about it, where can one run to escape the Lord (Psalms 139:7-9)?
© 2021 This study was prepared for a Bible class with the Sunrise Acres church of Christ in El Paso, TX by Brian A. Yeager.