Amos 3
Contemporary English Version

1People of Israel,

I rescued you from Egypt.

Now listen to my judgment

against you.

2Of all nations on earth,

you are the only one

I have chosen.

That's why I will punish you

because of your sins.

The Work of a Prophet

3Can two people walk together

without agreeing to meet?

4Does a lion roar in the forest

unless it has caught

a victim?

Does it growl in its den

unless it is eating?

5How can anyone catch a bird

without using a net?

Does a trap spring shut

unless something is caught?

6Isn't the whole city frightened

when the trumpet

signals an attack?

Isn't the Lord the one who brings

disaster on a city?

7Whatever the Lord God

plans to do,

he tells his servants,

the prophets.

8Everyone is terrified

when a lion roars—

and ordinary people

become prophets

when the Lord God speaks.

Samaria Is Doomed

9Here is a message

for the leaders

of Philistia+ and Egypt—

tell everyone to come together

on the hills of Samaria.

Let them see the injustice

and the lawlessness

in that city.

10The Lord has said

that they don't even know how

to do right.

They have become rich

from violence and robbery.

11And so the Lord God has sworn

that they will be surrounded.

Enemies will break through

their defenses

and steal their treasures.

12The Lord has promised

that only a few from Samaria

will escape with their lives

and with some broken pieces

of their beds and couches.+

It will be like when a shepherd

rescues two leg bones

and part of a sheep's ear

from the jaws of a lion.+

The Altars at Bethel

13The Lord God All-Powerful

told me to speak this message

against Jacob's descendants:

14 When I, the Lord, punish Israel

for their sins,

I will destroy the altars

at Bethel.

Even the corners of the altar+

will be left in the dirt.

15I will tear down winter homes

and summer homes.

Houses decorated with ivory

and all other mansions

will be gone forever.

I, the Lord, have spoken!


3.9 Philistia: The Hebrew text has “Ashdod,” one of the leading cities of Philistia.
3.12 some … couches: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.
3.12 lion: When a wild animal attacked and killed a sheep, the shepherd had to rescue part of the sheep and take it to the owner as proof that it had been killed by an animal. Otherwise, the shepherd had to pay the owner the cost of the sheep.
3.14 altar: Altars were places of worship but also places of protection. People whose lives were in danger could grab hold of the corners of an altar, and no one was allowed to kill them.

Contemporary English Version, Second Edition (CEV®)

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