December 10, 2011

Amos 5.16-20

Therefore thus says the Lord, the God of Hosts, the Lord:

In all the squares there shall be wailing,
and in all the streets they shall say, "Alas! Alas!"

They shall call the farmers to mourning,
and to wailing, those who are skilled in lamentation,
and in all vineyards there shall be wailing,
for I will pass through the midst of you,
says the Lord.

Woe to you who desire the day of the Lord!
Why would you have the day of the Lord?
It is darkness, and not light!

As if a man fled from a lion
and a bear met him,
or went into a house and leaned
with his hand against a wall
and a snake bit him!

Is not the day of the Lord darkness,
and gloom with no brightness in it?

1 Comments:

At 4:24 PM, Blogger forrest said...

"The day of the Lord," sayeth my old Oxford Annotated, "in which Israelites piously expected to be vindicated against their enemies, will be darkness and gloom."

What I don't remember-- is any previous mention of this "day" in the Bible. Which was, in any case, pretty much compiled some time after this prophecy was first made.

So I am quite confused about this one. It fits in quite well with the outcome of pious Israelite nationalism in that 1st Century period that gave us Jesus and some pretty ugly history.

But 'Israel' (Judea) was then governed by native client rulers under the Roman Empire, a situation where I'd naturally expect a great many people yearning for divine intervention.

How does that sentiment and expectation originate here, with Israel and Judah still independent Yahwist kingdoms? Why don't we hear of it before now?

Maybe this is written after there's been some popular prophetic denunciation of the prevailing economic oppression, most of which didn't get preserved as this did?

 

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