January 04, 2012

Amos 9.1-10

I saw the Lord standing beside the altar, and He said:
"Smite the capitals until the thresholds shake,
and shatter them on the heads of all the people;

and what are left of them I will slay with the sword;
not one of them shall flee away;
not one of them shall escape."

"Though they dig into Sheol,
from there shall my hand take them;
though they climb up to Heaven,
from there I will bring them down.

Though they hide themselves on the top of Carmel,
from there I will search out and take them;
and though they hide from my sight at the bottom of the sea,
there I will command the serpent;
and it shall bite them."

"And though they go into captivity before their enemies,
there I will command the sword
and it shall slay them.

I will set my eyes upon them
for evil, and not for good."

The Lord, God of Hosts,
He who touches the earth, and it melts,
and all who dwell in it mourn;
and all of it rises like the Nile
and sinks again, like the Nile of Egypt,

who builds his upper chambers in the Heavens
and founds his vault upon the Earth,
who calls for the waters of the sea
and pours them out upon the surface of the Earth--
The Lord is his name.

"Are you not like the Ethiopians to me,
oh People of Israel?" says the Lord.

Did I not bring up Israel from the land of Egypt,
and the Philistines from Caphtor
and the Syrians from Kir?

Behold, the eyes of the Lord God
are upon the sinful kingdom,
and I will destroy it from the surface of the ground;
except that I will not utterly destroy the house of Jacob,"
says the Lord.

"For lo, I will command,
and shake the house of Israel among all the nations
as one shakes with a sieve,
but no pebble shall fall upon the ground.

All the sinners of my people
shall die by the sword,
who say 'Evil shall not overtake
or meet us.' "

1 Comments:

At 11:06 AM, Blogger forrest said...

First, we have (Amos 3.1) "I've only known you, out of all the families of the Earth," and "Therefore I will punish you for all your iniquities."

And now, "Are you not like the Ethiopians to me, oh People of Israel?"

I think the point of the first saying is that God had "known" Israelites in the sense of carrying on open communications and interactions with them; they had explicitly acknowledged Him.

And the therefore: God will be (and is being) judged on their behavior (as He continues to be, to this day!) So, if they're going to go doing that...

Larry Milligan used to call our friend (and fellow poet of great power) LoVerne Brown "his mentor."

"If you're going to say that," she told him, "You're going to have to start listening to me, and doing what I tell you."

----

And the rest of us?:

"Behold, the eyes of the Lord God
are upon the sinful kingdom."

~Are you not like the Ethiopians to me, oh People of the United States?

 

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