Good News Translation (GNB)
7

A Vision of Locusts

71I had a vision from the Sovereign LORD. In it I saw him create a swarm of locusts just after the king's share of the hay had been cut and the grass was starting to grow again. 2In my vision I saw the locusts eat up every green thing in the land, and then I said, “Sovereign LORD, forgive your people! How can they survive? They are so small and weak!”

3The LORD changed his mind and said, “What you saw will not take place.”

A Vision of Fire

4I had another vision from the Sovereign LORD. In it I saw him preparing to punish his people with fire. The fire burnt up the great ocean under the earth, and started to burn up the land. 5Then I said, “Stop, Sovereign LORD! How can your people survive? They are so small and weak!”

6The LORD changed his mind again and said, “This will not take place either.”

A Vision of a Plumb Line

7I had another vision from the Lord. In it I saw him standing beside a wall that had been built with the help of a plumb line, and there was a plumb line in his hand. 8He asked me, “Amos, what do you see?”

“A plumb line,” I answered.

Then he said, “I am using it to show that my people are like a wall that is out of line. I will not change my mind again about punishing them. 9The places where Isaac's descendants worship will be destroyed. The holy places of Israel will be left in ruins. I will bring the dynasty of King Jeroboam to an end.”

Amos and Amaziah

10Amaziah, the priest of Bethel, then sent a report to King Jeroboam of Israel: “Amos is plotting against you among the people. His speeches will destroy the country. 11This is what he says: ‘Jeroboam will die in battle, and the people of Israel will be taken away from their land into exile.’ ”

12Amaziah then said to Amos, “That's enough, prophet! Go on back to Judah and do your preaching there. Let them pay you for it. 13Don't prophesy here at Bethel any more. This is the king's place of worship, the national temple.”

14Amos answered, “I am not the kind of prophet who prophesies for pay. I am a herdsman, and I take care of fig trees. 15But the LORD took me from my work as a shepherd and ordered me to come and prophesy to his people Israel. 16So now listen to what the LORD says. You tell me to stop prophesying, to stop raving against the people of Israel. 17And so, Amaziah, the LORD says to you, ‘Your wife will become a prostitute on the streets, and your children will be killed in war. Your land will be divided up and given to others, and you yourself will die in a heathen country. And the people of Israel will certainly be taken away from their own land into exile.’ ”

8

A Vision of a Basket of Fruit

81I had another vision from the Sovereign LORD. In it I saw a basket of fruit. 2The LORD asked, “Amos, what do you see?”

“A basket of fruit,” I answered.

The LORD said to me, “The end8.2 end: The Hebrew words for “end” and “fruit” sound alike. has come for my people Israel. I will not change my mind again about punishing them. 3On that day the songs in the palace will become cries of mourning. There will be dead bodies everywhere. They will be thrown out in silence.”8.3 out in silence; or out. Silence!

Israel's Doom

4Listen to this, you that trample on the needy and try to destroy the poor of the country. 5You say to yourselves, “We can hardly wait for the holy days to be over so that we can sell our corn. When will the Sabbath end, so that we can start selling again? Then we can overcharge, use false measures, and tamper with the scales to cheat our customers. 6We can sell worthless wheat at a high price. We'll find a poor person who can't pay his debts, not even the price of a pair of sandals, and we'll buy him as a slave.”

7The LORD, the God of Israel, has sworn, “I will never forget their evil deeds. 8And so the earth will quake, and everyone in the land will be in distress. The whole country will be shaken; it will rise and fall like the River Nile. 9The time is coming when I will make the sun go down at noon and the earth grow dark in daytime. I, the Sovereign LORD, have spoken. 10I will turn your festivals into funerals and change your glad songs into cries of grief. I will make you shave your heads and wear sackcloth, and you will be like parents mourning for their only child. That day will be bitter to the end.

11“The time is coming when I will send famine on the land. People will be hungry, but not for bread; they will be thirsty, but not for water. They will hunger and thirst for a message from the LORD. I, the Sovereign LORD, have spoken. 12People will wander from the Dead Sea to the Mediterranean and then on from the north to the east. They will look everywhere for a message from the LORD, but they will not find it. 13On that day even healthy young men and women will collapse from thirst. 14Those who swear by the idols of Samaria, who say, ‘By the god of Dan,’ or, ‘By the god of Beersheba’ — those people will fall and not rise again.”

9

The Lord's Judgements

91I saw the Lord standing by the altar. He gave the command: “Strike the tops of the temple columns so hard that the whole porch will shake. Break them off and let them fall on the heads of the people. I will kill the rest of the people in war. No one will get away; not one will escape. 2Even if they dig their way down to the world of the dead, I will catch them. Even if they climb up to heaven, I will bring them down. 3If they hide on the top of Mount Carmel, I will search for them and catch them. If they hide from me at the bottom of the sea, I will command the sea monster9.3 sea monster: It was believed that the sea was inhabited by a great monster. This creature, like all others, was regarded as under God's control. to bite them. 4If they are taken away into captivity by their enemies, I will order them to be put to death. I am determined to destroy them, not to help them.”

5The Sovereign LORD Almighty touches the earth,

and it quakes;

all who live there mourn.

The whole world rises and falls like the River Nile.

6The LORD builds his home in the heavens,

and over the earth he puts the dome of the sky.

He calls for the waters of the sea

and pours them out on the earth.

His name is the LORD!

7The LORD says, “People of Israel, I think as much of the people of Ethiopia9.7 Ethiopia: See Word List. as I do of you. I brought the Philistines from Crete and the Syrians from Kir, just as I brought you from Egypt. 8I, the Sovereign LORD, am watching this sinful kingdom of Israel, and I will destroy it from the face of the earth. But I will not destroy all the descendants of Jacob.

9“I will give the command and shake the people of Israel like corn in a sieve. I will shake them among the nations to remove all who are worthless. 10The sinners among my people will be killed in war — all those who say, ‘God will not let any harm come near us.’ ”

The Future Restoration of Israel

11

9.11–12:
Acts 15.16–18
The LORD says, “A day is coming when I will restore the kingdom of David, which is like a house fallen into ruins. I will repair its walls and restore it. I will rebuild it and make it as it was long ago. 12And so the people of Israel will conquer what is left of the land of Edom and all the nations that were once mine,” says the LORD, who will cause this to happen.

13“The days are coming,” says the LORD,

“when corn will grow faster than it can be harvested,

and grapes will grow faster than the wine can be made.

The mountains will drip with sweet wine,

and the hills will flow with it.

14I will bring my people back to their land.

They will rebuild their ruined cities and live there;

they will plant vineyards and drink the wine;

they will plant gardens and eat what they grow.

15I will plant my people on the land I gave them,

and they will not be pulled up again.”

The LORD your God has spoken.