Amos 6:12

12 Do horses run on the rocky crags? Does one plow the sea[a] with oxen? But you have turned justice into poison and the fruit of righteousness into bitterness—

Amos 6:12 in Other Translations

KJV
12 Shall horses run upon the rock? will one plow there with oxen? for ye have turned judgment into gall, and the fruit of righteousness into hemlock:
ESV
12 Do horses run on rocks? Does one plow there with oxen? But you have turned justice into poison and the fruit of righteousness into wormwood--
NLT
12 Can horses gallop over boulders? Can oxen be used to plow them? But that’s how foolish you are when you turn justice into poison and the sweet fruit of righteousness into bitterness.
MSG
12 Do you hold a horse race in a field of rocks? Do you plow the sea with oxen? You'd cripple the horses and drown the oxen. And yet you've made a shambles of justice, a bloated corpse of righteousness,
CSB
12 Do horses run on rock, or does someone plow [it] with oxen? Yet you have turned justice into poison and the fruit of righteousness into wormwood-

Amos 6:12 Meaning and Commentary

Amos 6:12

Shall horses run upon the rocks? or will [one] plough [there]
with oxen?
&c.] Will any man be so weak and foolish, to propose or attempt a race for horses upon rocks, where they and their riders would be in danger of breaking their necks? or would any man act so unwise a part, as to take a yoke of oxen to plough with them upon a rock, where no impression can be made? as vain and fruitless a thing it would be to attempt to bring such persons under a conviction of their sins, and to repentance for them, and reformation from them, who are given up to a judicial hardness of heart, like that of a rock, as are the persons described in the next clause; or as such methods with horses and oxen would be contrary to all the rules of reason and prudence, so as contrary a part do such persons act whose characters are next given, and there is no probability of bringing them to better sense and practice of things; for ye have turned judgment into gall, and the fruit of righteousness
into hemlock;
that which would be beneficial to a nation, than which nothing is more so, as the exercise of justice, and judgment, into that which is bitter and pernicious to it, as injustice and oppression; see ( Amos 5:7 ) .

Amos 6:12 In-Context

10 And if the relative who comes to carry the bodies out of the house to burn them asks anyone who might be hiding there, “Is anyone else with you?” and he says, “No,” then he will go on to say, “Hush! We must not mention the name of the LORD.”
11 For the LORD has given the command, and he will smash the great house into pieces and the small house into bits.
12 Do horses run on the rocky crags? Does one plow the sea with oxen? But you have turned justice into poison and the fruit of righteousness into bitterness—
13 you who rejoice in the conquest of Lo Debarand say, “Did we not take Karnaim by our own strength?”
14 For the LORD God Almighty declares, “I will stir up a nation against you, Israel, that will oppress you all the way from Lebo Hamath to the valley of the Arabah.”

Cross References 3

Footnotes 1

  • [a]. With a different word division of the Hebrew; Masoretic Text "plow there"