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Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible, by John Wesley, [1754-65], at

Amos Chapter 5

Amos 5:2

amo 5:2

The virgin - So she was, when first espoused to God. Upon her land - Broken to pieces upon her own land, and so left as a broken vessel.

Amos 5:3

amo 5:3

By a thousand - That sent out one thousand soldiers. An hundred - Shall lose nine parts of them.

Amos 5:4

amo 5:4

Ye shall live - It shall be well with you.

Amos 5:5

amo 5:5

Seek not - Consult not, worship not the idol at Bethel, Gilgal, or Beersheba.

Amos 5:6

amo 5:6

The house of Joseph - The kingdom of the ten tribes, the chief whereof was Ephraim, the son of Joseph. In Beth - el - If once this fire breaks out, all your idols in Beth - el shall not be able to quench it.

Amos 5:7

amo 5:7

Ye - Rulers and judges. Judgment - The righteous sentence of the law. To wormwood - Proverbially understood; bitterness, injustice and oppression. Leave off - Make to cease in your courts of judicature.

Amos 5:8

amo 5:8

The seven stars - A constellation, whose rising about September was usually accompanied with sweet showers. Orion - Which arising about November brings usually cold, rains and frosts intermixt very seasonable for the earth. The shadow of the earth - The greatest adversity into as great prosperity. Dark with might - Changes prosperity into adversity. That calleth - Commands the vapour to ascend, which he turns into rain; and then pours from the clouds to make the earth fruitful.

Amos 5:9

amo 5:9

The strong - The mighty, victorious and insolent. Shall come - Shall rally and form a siege against their besiegers.

Amos 5:10

amo 5:10

They - The judges and people. In the gate - Where judges sat, and where the prophets many times delivered their message.

Amos 5:11

amo 5:11

Your treading - You utterly oppress the helpless. Ye take - Ye extort from the poor great quantities of wheat, on which he should live.

Amos 5:12

amo 5:12

In the gate - In their courts of justice.

Amos 5:13

amo 5:13

Shall keep silence - Be forced to it. Evil - Both for the sinfulness of it, and for the troubles, wars, and captivity now at hand.

Amos 5:14

amo 5:14

With you - To bless and save you yet.

Amos 5:15

amo 5:15

The evil - All evil among the people, and yourselves. Love - Commend, encourage, defend: let your heart be toward good things, and good men. Remnant - What the invasions of enemies, or the civil wars have spared, and left in Samaria and Israel.

Amos 5:16

amo 5:16

Therefore - The prophet foreseeing their obstinacy, proceeds to denounce judgment against them. The husbandman - This sort of men are little used to such ceremonies of mourning, but now such also shall be called upon; leave your toil, betake yourselves to publick mourning.

Amos 5:17

amo 5:17

Vineyards - In these places were usually the greatest joy. Pass through - To punish all every where.

Amos 5:18

amo 5:18

That desire - Scoffingly, not believing any such day would come. To what end - What do you think to get by it? Is darkness - All adversity, black and doleful. Not light - No joy, or comfort an it.

Amos 5:19

amo 5:19

And a bear - You may escape one, but shall fall in another calamity. Into the house - At home you may hope for safety, but there other kind of mischief shall meet you.

Amos 5:21

amo 5:21

I hate - Impure and unholy as they are. Will not smell - A savour, of rest or delight, I will not accept and be pleased with.

Amos 5:23

amo 5:23

Thy songs - Used in their sacrifices, and solemn feasts; herein they imitated the temple - worship, but all was unpleasing to the Lord. Will not hear - Not with delight and acceptance. Thy viols - This one kind of musical instrument is put for all the rest.

Amos 5:24

amo 5:24

Let judgment - Let justice be administered constantly. Righteousness - Equity. Stream - Bearing down all that opposes it.

Amos 5:25

amo 5:25

Have ye - Their fathers and they, tho' at so great a distance of time, are one people, and so the prophet considers them. Unto me - Was it to me, or to your idols, that you offered, even in the wilderness?

Amos 5:26

amo 5:26

Ye have borne - Ye carried along with you in the wilderness; the shrine, or canopy in which the image was placed. Moloch - The great idol of the Ammonites. Chiun - Another idol.

Amos 5:27

amo 5:27

Therefore - For all your idolatry and other sins, in which you have obstinately continued.

Next: Amos Chapter 6