Amos 1:1–2 (NKJV)

1 The words of Amos, who was among the sheepbreeders of Tekoa, which he saw concerning Israel in the days of Uzziah king of Judah, and in the days of Jeroboam the son of Joash, king of Israel, two years before the earthquake.

Amos was a shepherd from Tekoa, a region of Judah, but was called to prophecy to the North (Israel).  His message, however, would resonate with Judah after the fall of Israel and the great earthquake which seemed to confirm this prophecy to Israel.  He was a contemporary of Isaiah, who was a relative of Uzziah, the king of Judah.  Therefore, although he was a native of Judah, he prophesied to Israel, and had an effect on both nations.

And he said:

“The Lord roars from Zion,

And utters His voice from Jerusalem;

The pastures of the shepherds mourn,

And the top of Carmel withers.”

Amos’ prophecy begins with this pronouncement of God’s power, wrath, and effect.  Wild animals, futility, and drought (Stuart, Douglas) would come to Israel in hopes that it would turn them back to Yahweh.  However, they ignored the warnings and were destroyed.  The Lord is identified as a lion, similar to other Scriptural identifications, and is also associated with Jerusalem as His rightful place, His home.  The shepherds mourn, and the vegetation withers in Carmel when Yahweh roars.  This re-establishes the power and place of the Lord in the nation and region surrounding Jerusalem.  Amos, a simple sheep herder, is given a powerful message for the people of God.  To what is God calling you?  Even if you are a simple man with simple ways, God wants to use you for His glory.  Answer the call and see what God can do through you!

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