According to the first verse, Amos prophesied during the reigns of Uzziah over Judah (792-740 B.C.) and Jeroboam II over the Israel (793-753). After the reign of Solomon the Kingdom of Israel was split into two kingdoms. The Northern 10 tribes were called Israel (nick-named Ephraim) and the Southern two tribes were called Judah. In the North the religious shrines had become centers of vice and by Amos’s day the people had become pagan at heart. The Dan and Bethel shrines were about calf worship and Idolatry. Into this situation God chose as his spokesman a simple shepherd and itinerant orchard worker who was an enthusiastic Jehovah worshiper. He was from the working class of people but he understood human nature. This Tekoan shepherd launches out in his prophecy like a boiling pot he takes on such issues as social injustice and economic issues. His messages touched people, politics and purses. This commentary will explore the messages of Amos about the various Nations.
HIGHLIGHTS OF AMOS
Amos was like a roaring lion. This true man of God takes on the establishment. Ritualism had supplanted religion. They sneered at the thought of a rugged country man pouring out his messages like muriatic acid on a concrete floor. His messages were plain and simple he likens their escape to a shepherd yanking back a leg or an ear from a lion’s mouth, or to a person escaping with only a table leg or a corner of a blanket. His messages were bad news. He portrays God as being sick and fed up with their brand of religion.
The people Amos addressed had plenty of “religion.” They went regularly to shrines for worship (sex and religious shrines). They looked forward to “the day of the LORD,” when God would fulfill all their expectations for their country. But Amos brought unexpected bad news from God: “I hate, I despise your religious feasts” (5:21). God didn’t want sacrifice or singing. He demanded justice. Amos listed all Israel’s neighbors, announcing God’s judgment for their crimes against humanity. Israelites liked this kind of talk; they felt superior to all these nations. But having caught the Israelites’ attention, Amos circled like a rabbit being chased by a beagle hound and dramatically tracked down Israel. God would judge Israel too. The people, their beautiful homes, their sacred altars all would be destroyed.
Amos declared that God was going to judge his unfaithful, disobedient, covenant-breaking people. The shrines at Bethel and other places of worship were pagan. Their brand of religion was pagan to the core. It was also a time of idolatry, extravagant indulgence in luxurious living, immorality, corruption of judicial procedures and oppression of the poor. As a consequence, God would soon bring about the Assyrian captivity of the northern kingdom. Society and religion were as bankrupt as Fanny Mae. It was a day when there was expansion, freedom, activity, prosperity, and peace. The rich gained their wealth by injustice and oppression. Wealth abounded, life of luxury and good music, rich furnishings and banquets, ease and extravagance was contrasted with misery and suffering of the poor and slaves. Sex and religious shrines abounded, songs, offerings, attendance, elaborate ceremonies, since they controlled the crucial trade routes, merchants piled up big profits. Luxuries became readily available─new stone houses, ivory-inlaid furniture, top-grade meat and fine wine, the best body lotions. Gross immorality was aided and abetted by religious leaders, instead of plain living, they knew extravagance, carousals, lolling on soft couches, and idling precious time away while their country was going to ruin.
Amos was not a man of the court like Isaiah, or a priest like Jeremiah. He earned his living from the flock and the sycamore-fig grove. His skill with words and knowledge of history leaves us breathless. Though his home was in Judah, he was sent to announce God’s judgment on the northern kingdom (Israel). He ministered for the most part at Bethel, Israel’s main religious sanctuary, where the upper class of the northern kingdom worshiped. Perhaps because he was a farmer, Amos used a plain writing style, filled with strong country language. Amos predicted that Israel would be punished, and this commentary will explore all of his predictions. After King Jeroboam, the government deteriorated. Five kings took the throne in the next 13 years; four were assassinated. In 30 years Israel was permanently dismantled by Assyrian armies they were deported beyond the Euphrates River and never heard from again. Amid such peace and prosperity, one lone voice scraped like a wire brush on raw flesh. Amos spoke bluntly with a farmer’s vocabulary, calling the city socialites “cows”
If we submit ourselves to the passionate reading of the Prophets it will draw us into a spiritual life. Follow with me thru the book of Amos who spends his time on the front lines of defending the downtrodden and the poor. The prophet reveals that God’s feelings have intensified and that he is going to destroy the nations that have destroyed his people. So, he sends Amos to Damascus, Gaza, Ashdod, Ashkelon, Ekron, Tyre, Edom, Bozrah, Ammon, Rabbah, Moab, Samaria, and Jerusalem to warn them of the coming punishment and dire consequence if they do not repent. Amos knew these places like the back of his hand. It was as if he had been in the detective business. He knew of their materialism, luxury, ease, drinking, bribery, extortion, shallow thinking and actual immorality. Within about 50 years his prophecies regarding these nations would be fulfilled.
1 The words of Amos, who was among the herdmen of Tekoa, which he saw concerning Israel in the days of Uzziah king of Judah, and in the days of Jeroboam the son of Joash king of Israel, two years before the earthquake.
Amos was not a professional prophet he had not attended the school of the prophets he was a herdsman and a tree trimmer Cf. Amos 7:14. He lived in Tekoa which was about ten miles south of Jerusalem. This earthquake must have been of considerable magnitude because they were still talking about it 200 years later.
Josephus 2,000 years ago speaks about this earthquake in his book. The following quote will give us insight into this verse.
“Accordingly, when a remarkable day was come, and a general festival was to be celebrated, he put on the holy garment, and went into the temple to offer incense to God upon the golden altar, which he was prohibited to do by Azariah the high priest, who had fourscore priests with him, and who told him that it was not lawful for him to offer sacrifice, and that “none besides the posterity of Aaron were permitted so to do.” And when they cried out that he must go out of the temple, and not transgress against God, he was wroth at them, and threatened to kill them, unless they would hold their peace. In the mean time a great earthquake shook the ground and a rent was made in the temple, and the bright rays of the sun shone through it, and fell upon the king’s face, insomuch that the leprosy seized upon him immediately. And before the city, at a place called Eroge, half the mountain broke off from the rest on the west, and rolled itself four furlongs, and stood still at the east mountain, till the roads, as well as the king’s gardens, were spoiled by the obstruction. Now, as soon as the priests saw that the king’s face was infected with the leprosy, they told him of the calamity he was under, and commanded that he should go out of the city as a polluted person.” Josephus Ant: Book 9 Ch. 10
Zechariah makes mention of this earthquake in his prophecy:
Zec 14:5 And ye shall flee to the valley of the mountains; for the valley of the mountains shall reach unto Azal: yea, ye shall flee, like as ye fled from before the earthquake in the days of Uzziah king of Judah: and the LORD my God shall come, and all the saints with thee.
2 And he said, The LORD will roar from Zion, and utter his voice from Jerusalem; and the habitations of the shepherds shall mourn, and the top of Carmel shall wither.
When the Lord roars it signifies the intense feelings he has against the wrong of the heathen nations as well as those of his own people. As you read this book you will get the feeling of God roaring like a lion as he attacks the nations of whom Amos identifies.
Carmel is located near the port of modern Haifa. The term Carmel shall wither refers to a drought that would curb the growth of plant life and orchards and forests. Sharon, Lebanon, Bashan and Carmel were known as places of fertility and scenic beauty. God thus says he will bring it to devastation.
Jerusalem is mentioned because it is the capitol.
3 Thus saith the LORD; For three transgressions of Damascus, and for four, I will not turn away the punishment thereof; because they have threshed Gilead with threshing instruments of iron:
He now turns to Damascus the capitol of Syria. For repeated transgressions or as Amos says three, yes make it four. They had committed the Galeadites to capitol punishment under the threshing instrument. This threshing instrument was made of heavy planks fastened together and armed beneath with sharp iron points and was drawn by oxen. They took this machine and drug it over people tearing them from limb to limb. The following scriptures will describe this instrument. It was similar to the Iron tooth harrow that we farmed with a decade ago.
2Ki 8:12 And Hazael said, Why weepeth my lord? And he answered, Because I know the evil that thou wilt do unto the children of Israel: their strong holds wilt thou set on fire, and their young men wilt thou slay with the sword, and wilt dash their children, and rip up their women with child.
Isa 41:15 “Behold, I have made you a new, sharp threshing sledge with double edges; You will thresh the mountains, and pulverize them, And will make the hills like chaff.”
Isaiah and Jeremiah both deliver a message denouncing Damascus and telling that the city will be removed and become a place of ruins. This was fulfilled by Tiglath-pilneser in:
2Ki 16:9 “So the king of Assyria listened to him; and the king of Assyria went up against Damascus and captured it, and carried the people of it away into exile to Kir, and put Rezin to death.”
Its walls were demolished, its houses pulled down, and its inhabitants carried captive; this was done by Tilgath-pilneser king of Assyria, this was one of the oldest cities in the bible, and the head of the kingdom of Syria, and although it underwent this calamity, it was rebuilt again and again and was a city of great fame, and again destroyed by Nebuchadnezzar, Jer. 49:24 after which it was raised up again, and was in existence in the book of Acts and is still in existence to this day. Isaiah and Jeremiah both have an oracle concerning
Damascus and they are here with quoted for the reader.
Isa 17:1-14 The oracle concerning Damascus. “Behold, Damascus is about to be removed from being a city, And it will become a fallen ruin.
2 “The cities of Aroer are forsaken; They will be for flocks to lie down in, And there will be no one to frighten them.
3 “The fortified city will disappear from Ephraim, And sovereignty from Damascus And the remnant of Aram; They will be like the glory of the sons of Israel,” Declares the LORD of hosts.
4 Now it will come about in that day that the glory of Jacob will fade, And the fatness of his flesh will become lean.
5 It will be even like the reaper gathering the standing grain, As his arm harvests the ears, Or it will be like one gleaning ears of grain In the valley of Rephaim.
6 Yet gleanings will be left in it like the shaking of an olive tree, Two or three olives on the topmost bough, Four or five on the branches of a fruitful tree, Declares the LORD, the God of Israel.
7 In that day man will have regard for his Maker, And his eyes will look to the Holy One of Israel.
8 And he will not have regard for the altars, the work of his hands, Nor will he look to that which his fingers have made, Even the Asherim and incense stands.
9 In that day their strong cities will be like forsaken places in the forest, Or like branches which they abandoned before the sons of Israel; And the land will be a desolation.
10 For you have forgotten the God of your salvation And have not remembered the rock of your refuge. Therefore you plant delightful plants And set them with vine slips of a strange god.
11 In the day that you plant it you carefully fence it in, And in the morning you bring your seed to blossom; But the harvest will be a heap In a day of sickliness and incurable pain.
12 Alas, the uproar of many peoples Who roar like the roaring of the seas, And the rumbling of nations Who rush on like the rumbling of mighty waters!
13 The nations rumble on like the rumbling of many waters, But He will rebuke them and they will flee far away, And be chased like chaff in the mountains before the wind, Or like whirling dust before a gale.
14 At evening time, behold, there is terror! Before morning they are no more. Such will be the portion of those who plunder us, And the lot of those who pillage us.
Jer 49:23-27 Concerning Damascus. “Hamath and Arpad are put to shame, For they have heard bad news; They are disheartened. There is anxiety by the sea, It cannot be calmed.
24 “Damascus has become helpless; She has turned away to flee, And panic has gripped her; Distress and pangs have taken hold of her Like a woman in childbirth.
25 “How the city of praise has not been deserted, The town of My joy!
26 “Therefore, her young men will fall in her streets, And all the men of war will be silenced in that day,” declares the LORD of hosts.
27 “And I shall set fire to the wall of Damascus, And it will devour the fortified towers of Ben-hadad.”
The Syrians were at length subdued by the Assyrians, the city of Damascus
was taken and destroyed, and the inhabitants carried captive into Assyria 2Ki.
16:7-9. Thus, prophecy was fulfilled Isa. 17: l; Amos 1:4; Jer. 49:24. The
Kingdom of Syria remained a province of Assyria till the capture of Nineveh by
the Babylonians (625 B.C.); Syria later was invaded by the Romans (64 B.C.),
and became a province of Rome. Damascus was conquered by the
Mohammedan power in A.D. 634 and finally came under the rule of the Turks.
4 But I will send a fire into the house of Hazael, which shall
devour the palaces of Benhadad.
Hazael and Benhadad were father and son and reigned in succession over Syria and God threatens to destroy their palaces with fire. Hazel was the founder of the reigning dynasty of Syria and Benhadad was his son. This was fulfilled when Assyria invaded Syria.
5 I will break also the bar of Damascus, and cut off the inhabitant
from the plain of Aven, and him that holdeth the sceptre from the
house of Eden: and the people of Syria shall go into captivity unto
Kir, saith the LORD.
A bar was used to fasten one door to the other one in order to keep the intruder out. Cities would close the gates and doors and place a long bar in brackets located on the inside of the door so that no one could come in till the doors opened in the morning. The meaning is clear that God would allow an intruder such as an invading army to break through the defenses of Damascus and carry its citizens into Captivity. Kir was a fortress, a place to which Tiglath-pileser carried the Syrians captive after he had taken the city of Damascus
2 Ki. 16:9; Amos 1:5; 9:7; Isa. 22:6. In simple terms Kir was on the eastern side of the Euphrates river and they were kept there as slaves.
6 Thus saith the LORD; For three transgressions of Gaza, and for
four, I will not turn away the punishment thereof; because they
carried away captive the whole captivity, to deliver them up to
Gaza was one of the 5 principal cities of the Philistines. They were not content until they had removed the whole population and sold them to the Edomites for slaves. Edom was located in Mount Seir and was guilty not only of receiving slaves but also of excessive brutality in war. Teman and Bozrah were two of the chief cities in Edom. Gaza is also called Azzah, which is its Hebrew name Deut. 2:23; I Ki. 4:24; Jer. 25:20. In the division of the land it fell to the lot of Judah Jos. 15:47, Jud. 1:18. its gates were carried away by Samson Jud. 16:1-3. Here he was afterwards a prisoner, and “did grind in the prison house.” Here he also pulled down the temple of Dagon, and slew “all the lords of the Philistines,” himself also perishing in the ruin Jud. 16:21-30. The prophets denounce the judgments of God against it Jer. 25:20;47:5; Amos 1:6,7; Zep.2:4. It is referred to in Acts 8:26, Philip is here told to take the road from Jerusalem to Gaza and join himself with the Ethiopian Eunuch who was on his way home to Ethiopia it was about 6 miles south-west of Jerusalem and was desert, that is, a deserted town because by this time it had been destroyed by Alexander the Great.
7 But I will send a fire on the wall of Gaza, which shall devour the
They were punished for their cruelty and it was a center of slave traffic.
2Ki 18:8 He smote the Philistines, even unto Gaza, and the borders thereof,
from the tower of the watchmen to the fenced city.
8 And I will cut off the inhabitant from Ashdod, and him that
holdeth the sceptre from Ashkelon, and I will turn mine hand against
Ekron: and the remnant of the Philistines shall perish, saith the Lord
Ashdod was a Stronghold, a Philistine city Jos. 15:47, about midway between Gaza and Joppa, and 3 miles from the Mediterranean. It was one of the chief seats of the worship of Dagon I Sam 5:5. It belonged to the tribe of Judah Josh. 15:47, but it never came into their actual possession. It was an important city, as it stood on the highroad from Egypt to Palestine, and hence was strongly fortified 2 Ch.26:6, Isa 20:1. All these towns were in the land of the Philistines and were to share in the chastisement that God could bring against them.
Ekron was located about 11 miles north of Gath. It was assigned to Judah Jos. 13:3, and afterwards to Dan Josh. 19:43, but came again into the full possession of the Philistines 1 Sam. 5:10. It was the last place to which the Philistines carried the ark before they sent it back to Israel 1Sam. 5:10; 6:1-8. There was here a noted sanctuary of Baal-zebub. 2Ki. 1:2,3,6,16.
The following quotes will show the remarkable fulfillment of the prophecy of Amos.
Josephus Ant. 13:13.3 “But when Alexander saw that Ptolemy was retired from Gaza to Cyprus, and his mother Cleopatra was returned to Egypt, he grew angry at the people of Gaza, because they had invited Ptolemy to assist them, and besieged their city, and ravaged their country… Alexander, who, when he came in at first, lay quiet, but afterward set his army upon the inhabitants of Gaza, and gave them leave to punish them; so some went one way, and some went another, and slew the inhabitants of Gaza; yet were not they of cowardly hearts, but opposed those that came to slay them, and slew as many of the Jews; and some of them, when they saw themselves deserted, burnt their own houses, that the enemy might get none of their spoils; nay, some of them, with their own hands, slew their children and their wives, having no other way but this of avoiding slavery for them; but the senators, who were in all five hundred, fled to Apollo’s temple, (for this attack happened to be made as they were sitting,) whom Alexander slew; and when he had utterly overthrown their city, he returned to Jerusalem, having spent a year in that siege. “
Josephus Ant. 13:4.4 “With this Jonathan was irritated; and choosing himself out ten thousand of his soldiers, he went out of Jerusalem in haste, with his brother Simon, and came to Joppa, and pitched his camp on the outside of the city, because the people of Joppa had shut their gates against him, for they had a garrison in the city put there by Apollonius. But when Jonathan was preparing to besiege them, they were afraid he would take them by force, and so they opened the gates to him. But Apollonius, when he heard that Joppa was taken by Jonathan, took three thousand horsemen, and eight thousand footmen and came to Ashdod; and removing thence, he made his journey silently and slowly, and going up to Joppa, he made as if he was retiring from the place, and so drew Jonathan into the plain, as valuing himself highly upon his horsemen, and having his hopes of victory principally in them. However, Jonathan sallied out, and pursued Apollonius to Ashdod; but as soon as Apollonius perceived that his enemy was in the plain, he came back and gave him battle. But Apollonius had laid a thousand horsemen in ambush in a valley, that they might be seen by their enemies as behind them; which when Jonathan perceived, he was under no consternation, but ordering his army to stand in a square battle-array, he gave them a charge to fall on the enemy on both sides, and set them to face those that attacked them both before and behind; and while the fight lasted till the evening, he gave part of his forces to his brother Simon, and ordered him to attack the enemies; but for himself, he charged those that were with him to cover themselves with their armor, and receive the darts of the horsemen, who did as they were commanded; so that the enemy’s horsemen, while they threw their darts till they had no more left, did them no harm, for the darts that were thrown did not enter into their bodies, being thrown upon the shields that were united and conjoined together, the closeness of which easily overcame the force of the darts, and they flew about without any effect. But when the enemy grew remiss in throwing their darts from morning till late at night, Simon perceived their weariness, and fell upon the body of men before him; and because his soldiers showed great alacrity, he put the enemy to flight. And when the horsemen saw that the footmen ran away, neither did they stay themselves, but they being very weary, by the duration of the fight till the evening, and their hope from the footmen being quite gone, they basely ran away, and in great confusion also, till they were separated one from another, and scattered over all the plain. Upon which Jonathan pursued them as far as Ashdod, and slew a great many of them, and compelled the rest, in despair of escaping, to fly to the temple of Dagon, which was at Ashdod; but Jonathan took the city on the first onset, and burnt it, and the villages about it; nor did he abstain from the temple of Dagon itself, but burnt it also, and destroyed those that had fled to it. Now the entire multitude of the enemies that fell in the battle, and were consumed in the temple, were eight thousand. When Jonathan therefore had overcome so great an army, he removed from Ashdod, and came to Askelon; and when he had pitched his camp without the city, the people of Askelon came out and met him, bringing him hospitable presents, and honoring him; so he accepted of their kind intentions, and returned thence to Jerusalem with a great deal of prey, which he brought thence when he conquered his enemies…”
9 Thus saith the LORD; For three transgressions of Tyrus, and for
four, I will not turn away the punishment thereof; because they
delivered up the whole captivity to Edom, and remembered not the
Amos began with thundering pronouncements against the enemies of Israel and Judah. His local audience must have cheered as he called down judgment on the blatant misdeeds of their neighbors: selling slaves, breaking treaties, ripping open pregnant women, desecrating the dead.
Tyre was a principal city of the Phoenicians on the East Coast of the Mediterranean. They had delivered some of God’s people over to Edom who had long been bitter foes of Israel. The brotherly covenant was an understanding between two nations living near each other.
10 But I will send a fire on the wall of Tyrus, which shall devour the
It was captured and the city destroyed and their citizens carried into captivity 70 years by Nebuchazzer. After the 70 years of captivity they return and rebuild on an Island one half mile off the coast. Alexander the great destroyed the Tyraneans and they haven’t been heard of since.
Tyre was an ancient Phoenician city with an illustrious history. The commerce of the whole world was gathered into the warehouses of Tyre. “Tyrian merchants were the first who ventured to navigate the Mediterranean waters; and they founded their colonies on the coasts and neighboring islands of the Aegean Sea, in Greece, on the northern coast of Africa, at Carthage and other places, in Sicily and in Spain, and even beyond the pillars of Hercules. In the time of David a friendly alliance was entered into between the Hebrews and the Tyrians, who were long ruled over by their native kings 2sam. 5:11; 1 Ki. 5:1;
2 Ch.2:3. Tyre consisted of two distinct parts, a rocky fortress on the mainland, called “Old Tyre.” The main city was built on a small, rocky island about half-a-mile distant from the shore. It was a place of great strength. It was besieged by Shalmaneser, who was assisted by the Phoenicians of the mainland, for five years, and by Nebuchadnezzar (B.C.586-573) for thirteen years. He destroyed the city on the mainland and carried its citizens into captivity for 70 years. It afterwards fell under the power of Alexander the Great, after a siege of seven months, my notes will tell the entire story. It is referred to in Matt. 11:21; and Acts 12:20. In A.D. 1291 it was taken by the Saracens, and has remained a desolate ruin ever since.
Both Tyre and Sidon “were crowded with glass-shops, dyeing and weaving establishments; and among their cunning workmen not the least important class were those who were celebrated for the engraving of precious stones.” 2Ch. 2:7,14. The wickedness and idolatry of this city are frequently denounced by the prophets, and its final destruction predicted Isa 23:1; Jer. 25:22; Ezek. 26- 28; Zech. 9:2-4 The reader is now directed to the article that I have written regarding Tyre as the Prophet Ezekiel spoke of her in Ezekiel Chapters 26-28. I have put the entire exposition of these chapters in the appendix.
11 Thus saith the LORD; For three transgressions of Edom, and for
four, I will not turn away the punishment thereof; because he did
pursue his brother with the sword, and did cast off all pity, and his
anger did tear perpetually, and he kept his wrath for ever:
Edom─brother of Israel thru Esau. The land of Edom” Gen. 36:16, was mountainous. It was called “the mountain of Seir.” It is a wild and rugged region, and its old capital was Bozrah Isa 63:1. The early inhabitants of the land were Horites. They were destroyed by the Edomites Deut. 2:12. At the time of the Exodus they refused permission to the Israelites to pass through their land Num. 20:14-21, and always maintained an attitude of hostility toward them. They were conquered by David 2 Sam 8:14, and afterwards by Amaziah 2 Ch. 25:11. But they regained again their independence, and in later years, during the decline of the Jewish kingdom 2 Ki. 16:6, made war against Israel. They took part with the Chaldeans when Nebuchadnezzar captured Jerusalem, and afterwards they invaded and held possession of the south of Palestine as far as Hebron. At length, however, Edom fell under the growing Babylonian power Jer. 27:3-6. The present desolate condition of that land is a standing testimony to the inspiration of these prophecies. After an existence as a people for above seventeen hundred years, they have utterly disappeared, and their language even is forgotten for ever. In Petra, “where kings kept their court, and where nobles assembled, there no man dwells; it is given by lot to birds, and beasts, and reptiles.” God has deeded all the land of Edom to be a wildlife refuge forever.
Jer 27:3-6 And send them to the king of Edom, and to the king of Moab, and to the king of the Ammonites, and to the king of Tyrus, and to the king of Zidon, by the hand of the messengers which come to Jerusalem unto Zedekiah king of Judah;
4 And command them to say unto their masters, Thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel; Thus shall ye say unto your masters;
5 I have made the earth, the man and the beast that are upon the ground, by my great power and by my outstretched arm, and have given it unto whom it seemed meet unto me.
6 And now have I given all these lands into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon, my servant; and the beasts of the field have I given him also to serve him.
No student of prophecy will be satisfied till he learns the full story of Edom.
Genesis 25 records the birth of Esau (Edom) Rebecca had two nations in her
womb…Jacoby’s deceived Esau…Esau’s land inheritance…Esau was so
embittered that he decided to kill Jacob. First we see Esau in Sacred History.
Then we trace his linage to Mt. Seir, and his nation was known as Edom. A
full list of the dukes and kings are recorded in Genesis….This nation always
gave Israel trouble 2 Sam 8:14. After 7 centuries these nations existed side by
side, the older made servant to the younger by David. The rivalry and cruelty
of Edom were not able to keep his stubborn neck from the yoke. In the days of
Jehoram, king of Judah, they revolted. 2 Kings 8:20…..Later Amaziah was
back at war with Edom. 2 Kings 14:7 2 Ch. 25:12 The Edomites were often
subject to the Jews, and the Jews were never the servants of the Edomites.
Thus the prophecy was fulfilled for 13 centuries. Take a trip up Mount Seir
and you will see the ruins of thirty cities utterly laid waste and desolate all of
these ruins lay within 3 days journey of the Red Sea. These cities and their
ruins can be viewed on the internet. The Edomites have disappeared from the
earth. They have not been heard from since the second century. The land that
they inhabited is a God forsaken land that is occupied by animals. God gave
this territory to the animals and tells us that their deed is perpetual. This
territory is guarded by Arabs with a degree of hostility scarcely paralleled.
They do not live there and allow no one else to. Those who have been allowed
paved roads, numerous tombs, ancient sepulchers, mausoleums, fragments of
columns, ruins of palaces. Edom is nothing more than a grave yard inhabited
by snakes, scorpions, lions, etc. Esau had married two heathen wives and a
daughter of Ishmael. He hated God and the Jewish religion. He sold his
birthright and was a profane man. He went down the path of superstition and
wickedness. They lived by kidnapping and plunder. Their territory was called
the border of wickedness.
“From this remote past the prophecy hung over him. And now his capital city
rises up to testify to the truth of heaven. A city of rock, its temples, theaters,
palaces, triumphal arches, dwelling houses, aqueducts, all hewn out of solid
rock, presenting one of the greatest lessons in the whole world. A vast
amphitheater surrounded by mountains on all sides, in their native grandeur,
lifting their summits five or six hundred feet high, the city of rock, the capital of
Edom, (Petra) lies in desolation. The tombs and mausoleums in number and
greatness testify to the fact that long ago kings ruled in that land. Where are
they now? Shall we believe Moses and the prophets, when we see a city as
imperishable as the rock-ribbed hills, her monuments of greatness forsaken,
not a foot of man to tread her streets, worship in her temples, visit her theaters
or live in her palaces? This city so singular, so remote in origin, so rich in
historical associations, as beautiful in desolation, stands forth as a colossal
monument to the veracity of the prophets of God.” The Prophecies Unveiled by
A.M. Morris P.26, 27.
Now to the testimony of Scriptures.
Gen 25:19-33 Now these are the records of the generations of Isaac,Abraham’s
son: Abraham became the father of Isaac;
20 and Isaac was forty years old when he took Rebekah, the daughter of Bethuel the Aramean of Paddan-aram, the sister of Laban the Aramean, to be his wife.
21 And Isaac prayed to the LORD on behalf of his wife, because she was barren; and the LORD answered him and Rebekah his wife conceived.
22 But the children struggled together within her; and she said, “If it is so, why then am I this way?” So she went to inquire of the LORD.
23 And the LORD said to her, “Two nations are in your womb; And two peoples shall be separated from your body; And one people shall be stronger than the other; And the older shall serve the younger.”
24 When her days to be delivered were fulfilled, behold, there were twins in her womb.
25 Now the first came forth red, all over like a hairy garment; and they named him Esau.
26 And afterward his brother came forth with his hand holding on to Esau’s heel, so his name was called Jacob; and Isaac was sixty years old when she gave birth to them.
27 When the boys grew up, Esau became a skillful hunter, a man of the field; but Jacob was a peaceful man, living in tents.
28 Now Isaac loved Esau, because he had a taste for game; but Rebekah loved Jacob.
29 And when Jacob had cooked stew, Esau came in from the field and he was famished;
30 and Esau said to Jacob, “Please let me have a swallow of that red stuff there, for I am famished.” Therefore his name was called Edom.
31 But Jacob said, “First sell me your birthright.”
32 And Esau said, “Behold, I am about to die; so of what use then is the birthright to me?”
33 And Jacob said, “First swear to me”; so he swore to him, and sold his birthright to Jacob.
Heb 12:14-17 Pursue peace with all men, and the sanctification without which no one will see the Lord.
15 See to it that no one comes short of the grace of God; that no root of bitterness springing up causes trouble, and by it many be defiled;
16 that there be no immoral or godless person like Esau, who sold his own birthright for a single meal.
17 For you know that even afterwards, when he desired to inherit the blessing, he was rejected, for he found no place for repentance, though he sought for it with tears.
Mal 1:2-5 “I have loved you,” says the LORD. But you say, “How hast Thou loved us?” “Was not Esau Jacob’s brother?” declares the LORD. “Yet I have loved Jacob;
3 but I have hated Esau, and I have made his mountains a desolation, and appointed his inheritance for the jackals of the wilderness.”
4 Though Edom says, “We have been beaten down, but we will return and build up the ruins”; thus says the LORD of hosts, “They may build, but I will tear down; and men will call them the wicked territory, and the people toward whom the LORD is indignant forever.”
5 And your eyes will see this and you will say, “The LORD be magnified beyond the border of Israel!”
Oba 1:1-17 The vision of Obadiah. Thus says the Lord GOD concerning Edom– We have heard a report from the LORD, And an envoy has been sent among the nations saying, “Arise and let us go against her for battle”–
2 “Behold, I will make you small among the nations; You are greatly despised.
3 “The arrogance of your heart has deceived you, You who live in the clefts of the rock, In the loftiness of your dwelling place, Who say in your heart, ‘Who will bring me down to earth?’
4 “Though you build high like the eagle, Though you set your nest among the stars, From there I will bring you down,” declares the LORD.
5 “If thieves came to you, If robbers by night– O how you will be ruined!– Would they not steal only until they had enough? If grape gatherers came to you, Would they not leave some gleanings?
6 “O how Esau will be ransacked, And his hidden treasures searched out!
7 “All the men allied with you Will send you forth to the border, And the men at peace with you Will deceive you and overpower you. They who eat your bread Will set an ambush for you. (There is no understanding in him.)
8 “Will I not on that day,” declares the LORD, “Destroy wise men from Edom And understanding from the mountain of Esau?
9 “Then your mighty men will be dismayed, O Teman, In order that everyone may be cut off from the mountain of Esau by slaughter.
10 “Because of violence to your brother Jacob, You will be covered with shame, And you will be cut off forever.
11 “On the day that you stood aloof, On the day that strangers carried off his wealth, And foreigners entered his gate And cast lots for Jerusalem– You too were as one of them.
12 “Do not gloat over your brother’s day, The day of his misfortune. And do not rejoice over the sons of Judah In the day of their destruction; Yes, do not boast In the day of their distress.
13 “Do not enter the gate of My people In the day of their disaster. Yes, you, do not gloat over their calamity In the day of their disaster. And do not loot their wealth In the day of their disaster.
14 “And do not stand at the fork of the road To cut down their fugitives; And do not imprison their survivors In the day of their distress.
15 “For the day of the LORD draws near on all the nations. As you have done, it will be done to you. Your dealings will return on your own head.
16 “Because just as you drank on My holy mountain, All the nations will drink continually. They will drink and swallow, And become as if they had never existed.
17 “But on Mount Zion there will be those who escape, And it will be holy. And the house of Jacob will possess their possessions.
Eze 35:1-15 Moreover, the word of the LORD came to me saying,
2 “Son of man, set your face against Mount Seir, and prophesy against it,
3 and say to it, ‘Thus says the Lord GOD, “Behold, I am against you, Mount Seir, And I will stretch out My hand against you, And I will make you a desolation and a waste.
4 “I will lay waste your cities, And you will become a desolation. Then you will know that I am the LORD.
5 “Because you have had everlasting enmity and have delivered the sons of Israel to the power of the sword at the time of their calamity, at the time of the punishment of the end,
6 therefore, as I live,” declares the Lord GOD, “I will give you over to bloodshed, and bloodshed will pursue you; since you have not hated bloodshed, therefore bloodshed will pursue you.
7 “And I will make Mount Seir a waste and a desolation, and I will cut off from it the one who passes through and returns.
8 “And I will fill its mountains with its slain; on your hills and in your valleys and in all your ravines those slain by the sword will fall.
9 “I will make you an everlasting desolation, and your cities will not be inhabited. Then you will know that I am the LORD.
10 “Because you have said, ‘These two nations and these two lands will be mine, and we will possess them,’ although the LORD was there,
11 therefore, as I live,” declares the Lord GOD, “I will deal with you according to your anger and according to your envy which you showed because of your hatred against them; so I will make Myself known among them when I judge you.
12 “Then you will know that I, the LORD, have heard all your revilings which you have spoken against the mountains of Israel saying, ‘They are laid desolate; they are given to us for food.’
13 “And you have spoken arrogantly against Me and have multiplied your words against Me; I have heard.”
14 ‘Thus says the Lord GOD, “As all the earth rejoices, I will make you a desolation.
15 “As you rejoiced over the inheritance of the house of Israel because it was desolate, so I will do to you. You will be a desolation, O Mount Seir, and all Edom, all of it. Then they will know that I am the LORD.”‘
Jer 49:14-21 I have heard a message from the LORD, And an envoy is sent among the nations, saying, “Gather yourselves together and come against her, And rise up for battle!”
15 “For behold, I have made you small among the nations, Despised among men.
16 “As for the terror of you, The arrogance of your heart has deceived you, O you who live in the clefts of the rock, Who occupy the height of the hill. Though you make your nest as high as an eagle’s, I will bring you down from there,” declares the LORD.
17 “And Edom will become an object of horror; everyone who passes by it will be horrified and will hiss at all its wounds.
18 “Like the overthrow of Sodom and Gomorrah with its neighbors,” says the LORD, “no one will live there, nor will a son of man reside in it.
19 “Behold, one will come up like a lion from the thickets of the Jordan against a perennially watered pasture; for in an instant I shall make him run away from it, and whoever is chosen I shall appoint over it. For who is like Me, and who will summon Me into court? And who then is the shepherd who can stand against Me?”
20 Therefore hear the plan of the LORD which He has planned against Edom, and His purposes which He has purposed against the inhabitants of Teman: surely they will drag them off, even the little ones of the flock; surely He will make their pasture desolate because of them.
21 The earth has quaked at the noise of their downfall. There is an outcry! The noise of it has been heard at the Red Sea.
Isa 34:10-17 It shall not be quenched night or day; Its smoke shall go up forever; From generation to generation it shall be desolate; None shall pass through it forever and ever.
11 But pelican and hedgehog shall possess it, And owl and raven shall dwell in it; And He shall stretch over it the line of desolation And the plumb line of emptiness.
12 Its nobles–there is no one there Whom they may proclaim king– And all its princes shall be nothing.
13 And thorns shall come up in its fortified towers, Nettles and thistles in its fortified cities; It shall also be a haunt of jackals And an abode of ostriches.
14 And the desert creatures shall meet with the wolves, The hairy goat also shall cry to its kind; Yes, the night monster shall settle there And shall find herself a resting place.
15 The tree snake shall make its nest and lay eggs there, And it will hatch and gather them under its protection. Yes, the hawks shall be gathered there, Every one with its kind.
16 Seek from the book of the LORD, and read: Not one of these will be missing; None will lack its mate. For His mouth has commanded, And His Spirit has gathered them.
17 And He has cast the lot for them, And His hand has divided it to them by line. They shall possess it forever; From generation to generation they shall dwell in it.
Psa 83:1-8 O God, do not remain quiet; Do not be silent and, O God, do not be still.
2 For, behold, Thine enemies make an uproar; And those who hate Thee have exalted themselves.
3 They make shrewd plans against Thy people, And conspire together against Thy treasured ones.
4 They have said, “Come, and let us wipe them out as a nation, That the name of Israel be remembered no more.”
5 For they have conspired together with one mind; Against Thee do they make a covenant:
6 The tents of Edom and the Ishmaelites; Moab, and the Hagrites;
7 Gebal, and Ammon, and Amalek; Philistia with the inhabitants of Tyre;
8 Assyria also has joined with them; They have become a help to the children of Lot. Selah.
12 But I will send a fire upon Teman, which shall devour the
palaces of Bozrah.
Teman is the region of Idumaea. Bozerah is the capital of Idumaea…Fulfilled under Nebuchadnezzar when he invaded Edom.
13 Thus saith the LORD; For three transgressions of the children of
Ammon, and for four, I will not turn away the punishment thereof;
because they have ripped up the women with child of Gilead, that
they might enlarge their border:
Descendants of Lot. They were so greedy for territory that they committed the brutal acts in order to seize the territory for themselves.
Jud 11:32; 2 Sam 12:26-31. This is an example of their brutality.
Ammonite is the usual name of the descendants of Ammon, the son of Lot Gen. 19:38. From the very beginning Deut. 2:16-20 of their history till they are lost sight of Jud.5:2, this tribe is closely associated with the Moabites. Both of these tribes hired Balaam to curse Israel. They showed no kindness to the Israelites when passing through their territory, and therefore they were prohibited from “entering the congregation of the Lord to the tenth generation”. They afterwards became hostile to Israel. Jephthah waged war against them, and “took twenty cities with a very great slaughter” Judges 11:33. They were again defeated by Saul 1 Sam. 11:11. Much of their history is found in the book of 2 Samuel and David plays a role in the events. And here is the straw that breaks the camels back. One of Solomon’s wives was Naamah, an Ammonite. She was the mother of Rehoboam Solomon’s son and the next king of Judah after Solomon’s death. 1 Kings 14:31; 2 Ch. 12:13. The prophets predicted fearful judgments against the Ammonites because of their hostility to Israel. The scriptures tell the whole story and some of them as quoted in full below. The national idol worshipped by this people was Moloch or Milcom, at whose altar they offered human sacrifices 1 Kings 11:5-7. The high places built for this idol by Solomon, at the instigation of his Ammonitish wives, were not destroyed till the time of Josiah 2 Kings 23:13.
Eze 21:28-32 “And you, son of man, prophesy and say, ‘Thus says the Lord GOD concerning the sons of Ammon and concerning their reproach,’ and say: ‘A sword, a sword is drawn, polished for the slaughter, to cause it to consume, that it may be like lightning–
29 while they see for you false visions, while they divine lies for you–to place you on the necks of the wicked who are slain, whose day has come, in the time of the punishment of the end.
30 ‘Return it to its sheath. In the place where you were created, in the land of your origin, I shall judge you.
31 ‘And I shall pour out My indignation on you; I shall blow on you with the fire of My wrath, and I shall give you into the hand of brutal men, skilled in destruction.
32 ‘You will be fuel for the fire; your blood will be in the midst of the land. You will not be remembered, for I, the LORD, have spoken.'”
Eze 25:2-10 “Son of man, set your face toward the sons of Ammon, and prophesy against them,
3 and say to the sons of Ammon, ‘Hear the word of the Lord GOD ! Thus says the Lord GOD, “Because you said, ‘Aha!’ against My sanctuary when it was profaned, and against the land of Israel when it was made desolate, and against the house of Judah when they went into exile,
4 therefore, behold, I am going to give you to the sons of the east for a possession, and they will set their encampments among you and make their dwellings among you; they will eat your fruit and drink your milk.
5 “And I shall make Rabbah a pasture for camels and the sons of Ammo a
resting place for flocks. Thus you will know that I am the LORD .”
6 ‘For thus says the Lord GOD, “Because you have clapped your hands and stamped your feet and rejoiced with all the scorn of your soul against the land of Israel,
7 therefore, behold, I have stretched out My hand against you, and I shall give you for spoil to the nations. And I shall cut you off from the peoples and make you perish from the lands; I shall destroy you. Thus you will know that I am the LORD.”
8 ‘Thus says the Lord GOD, “Because Moab and Seir say, ‘Behold, the house of Judah is like all the nations,’
9 therefore, behold, I am going to deprive the flank of Moab of its cities, of its cities which are on its frontiers, the glory of the land, Beth-jeshimoth, Baal-meon, and Kiriathaim,
10 and I will give it for a possession, along with the sons of Ammon, to the sons of the east, that the sons of Ammon may not be remembered among the nations.
The following quote will supply the history of the Ammonites that fulfill
“And when they were there, God signified to the prophet that the king of Babylon was about making an expedition against the Egyptians, and commanded him to foretell to the people that Egypt should be taken, and the king of Babylon should slay some of them and, should take others captive, and bring them to Babylon; which things came to pass accordingly; for on the fifth year after the destruction of Jerusalem, which was the twenty-third of the reign of Nebuchadnezzar, he made an expedition against Celesyria; and when he had possessed himself of it, he made war against the Ammonites and Moabites; and when he had brought all these nations under subjection, he fell upon Egypt, in order to overthrow it; and he slew the king that then reigned and set up another; and he took those Jews that were there captives, and led them away to Babylon. And such was the end of the nation of the Hebrews, as it hath been delivered down to us, it having twice gone beyond Euphrates; for the people of the ten tribes were carried out of Samaria by the Assyrians, in the days of king Hoshea; after which the people of the two tribes that remained after Jerusalem was taken [were carried away] by Nebuchadnezzar, the king of Babylon and Chaldea. Now as to Shalmanezer, he removed the Israelites out of their country, and placed therein the nation of the Cutheans, who had formerly belonged to the inner parts of Persia and Media, but were then called Samaritans, by taking the name of the country to which they were removed; but the king of Babylon, who brought out the two tribes, placed no other nation in their country, by which means all Judea and Jerusalem, and the temple, continued to be a desert for seventy years; but the entire interval of time which passed from the captivity of the Israelites, to the carrying away of the two tribes, proved to be a hundred and thirty years, six months, and ten days.” Josephus 10:9.7
14 But I will kindle a fire in the wall of Rabbah, and it shall devour
the palaces thereof, with shouting in the day of battle, with a tempest
in the day of the whirlwind:
Capital of Ammon in the war that followed between Nebuchadnezzar and the Ammonites. Rabbath was burned and its nobles were carried into captivity.