Old Testament

Amos 6
Judgment Against Complacency
61Woe to[] you who are complacent in Zion,
you who feel secure on Mount Samaria,
you distinguished people of the leading nation,
to whom the house of Israel comes.
2Travel to Kalneh and look.
Go from there to Hamath Rabbah,
and go down to Gath of the Philistines.
Are you better than those kingdoms?
Are their territories greater than your territory?[]
3You who are trying to put off the evil day,
you bring near the session for violence!
4Those who lie on ivory beds,
sprawling upon their couches,
eating lambs from the flock
and calves straight from the stall,
5improvising tunes on the lyre,
composing music for themselves on musical instruments like David,
6drinking large bowls of wine—
they slather[] themselves with the most expensive perfumed oils,
but they do not grieve over the ruin of Joseph.
7That is why they will go into exile as the first of the exiles.
Those who sprawl out at their feasts for the dead will depart.
Certain Destruction for Proud Israel
8The Lord God swears by himself,
declares the Lord, the God of Armies:
I detest the pride of Jacob,
and I hate his citadels,
so I will hand over the city and everything in it.
9If ten men happen to survive in one house, they will die. 10When a relative who burns the bodies[] comes to take away the bones from the house, he will say to whoever remains in the recesses of the house, “Is there anyone else still with you?” And they will say, “No one.” And he will say, “Silence! For you must not invoke the name of the Lord!”[]
11Look, the Lord is indeed giving a command,
and he will smash the largest house into fragments
and the smallest house into splinters.
12Do horses run on a rocky cliff?
Does anyone plow the sea with an ox?[]
Yet you turn justice into poison
and the fruit of righteousness into wormwood.
13You are rejoicing over Lo Debar.
You are saying, “Was it not by our strength that we captured Karnaim for ourselves?”
14Indeed, I am about to raise up a nation against you, O house of Israel,
declares the Lord, the God of Armies.
They will oppress you from Lebo Hamath to the Canyon of the Arabah.[]


  • 6:1 Or how terrible it will be for
  • 6:2 The line of thought is difficult to follow here. The context seems to require that the two lines of the verse be parallel statements, each of which requires the answer “no.” The context therefore seems to call for reversing the second comparison, but there is no manuscript evidence to support such a switch.
  • 6:6 Literally anoint, but the reference is not to anointing to office.
  • 6:10 Or who prepares bodies for burial
  • 6:10 Verses 9 and 10 are difficult. Translations vary greatly.
  • 6:12 The translation follows a re-division of a word of the Hebrew text. The main Hebrew text reads does one plow with oxen, a reading which calls for the answer “yes,” but which does not fit the context. Another solution is to repeat the object rocky cliff from the first half of the verse: does one plow a rocky cliff with oxen?
  • 6:14 Lebo Hamath is far to the north in Syria. The Arabah is the rift between the mountains of Edom and the mountains of Sinai, south of Israel.