Amos 8:4

4 Hear this, O ye that swallow up the needy, even to make the poor* of the land to fail,

Amos 8:4 Meaning and Commentary

Amos 8:4

Hear this, O ye that swallow up the needy
Like a man that pants after a draught of water when thirsty; and, when he has got it, greedily swallows it down at one gulp; so these rich men swallowed up the poor, their labours, gains, and profits, and persons too; got all into their own hands, and made them bondsmen and slaves to them; see ( Amos 2:7 ) ; these are called upon to hear this dreadful calamity threatened, and to consider what then would become of them and their ill gotten riches; and suggesting, that their oppression of the needy was one cause of this destruction of the land: even to make the poor of the land to fail;
or "cease" F1; to die for want of the necessaries of life, being obliged to such hard labour; so unmercifully used, their faces ground, and pinched with necessity; and so sadly paid for their work, that they could not live by it.


F1 (twbvl) "ad cessare faciendum", Mercerus; "et facitis cessare", Munster, Drusius.

Amos 8:4 In-Context

2 And he said, Amos, what seest thou? And I said, A basket of summer fruit. Then said the LORD unto me, The end is come upon my people of Israel; I will not again pass by them any more.
3 And the songs of the temple shall be howlings in that day, saith the Lord GOD: there shall be many dead bodies in every place; they shall cast them forth with silence.
4 Hear this, O ye that swallow up the needy, even to make the poor of the land to fail,
5 Saying, When will the new moon be gone, that we may sell corn? and the sabbath, that we may set forth wheat, making the ephah small, and the shekel great, and falsifying the balances by deceit?
6 That we may buy the poor for silver, and the needy for a pair of shoes; yea, and sell the refuse of the wheat?