Amos 1

Judgment on Israel’s Neighbors (1:1–15)

6–8 The second judgment is on Gaza, a major city of Philistia, a region west of Israel along the Mediterranean coast. The Philistines were ancient enemies of Israel; they frequently captured Israelites and sold them as slaves. For this sin, the Lord says He will destroy the cities of Philistia until the last of the Philistines is dead (verse 8). Philistia was gradually destroyed by a series of invaders, including the Assyrians and Babylonians.5

9–10 The next judgment concerns Tyre,a city–state on the Mediterranean coast just north of Israel. Hiram king of Tyre once had a treaty of brotherhood with DAVID and Solomon (see 1 Kings 5:1,12), but subsequent kings of Tyre were hostile to Israel and sold Israelites into slavery (verse 9). Tyre was eventually destroyed by Alexander the Great.6

11–12 The next judgment concerns Edom, the nation to the south of Israel and Judah. Edom (Esau) was a brother to Israel;7 nevertheless, the Edomites regarded the Israelites with anger and hostility. Therefore God will destroy Edom, represented here by its two leading cities, Teman and Bozrah (verse 12).

13–15 The next judgment concerns Ammon (present–day Jordan), just east of Israel. Amos mentions Ammon’s sin against Gilead; in an effort to expand their borders, the Ammonites even killed pregnant women (verse 13). Therefore, God will destroy Ammon’s capital, Rabbah (present–day Amman), and send Ammon’s king into exile (verses 14–15). This judgment was carried out by the Assyrians not long after Amos spoke these words.8

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