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Amos 4:13


4:13 For here he is!

He 1  formed the mountains and created the wind.

He reveals 2  his plans 3  to men.

He turns the dawn into darkness 4 

and marches on the heights of the earth.

The Lord, the God who commands armies, 5  is his name!”

Amos 5:8-9


5:8 (But there is one who made the constellations Pleiades and Orion;

he can turn the darkness into morning

and daylight 6  into night.

He summons the water of the seas

and pours it out on the earth’s surface.

The Lord is his name!

5:9 He flashes 7  destruction down upon the strong

so that destruction overwhelms 8  the fortified places.)

Amos 9:5-6


9:5 The sovereign Lord who commands armies will do this. 9 

He touches the earth and it dissolves; 10 

all who live on it mourn.

The whole earth 11  rises like the River Nile, 12 

and then grows calm 13  like the Nile in Egypt. 14 

9:6 He builds the upper rooms of his palace 15  in heaven

and sets its foundation supports 16  on the earth. 17 

He summons the water of the sea

and pours it out on the earth’s surface.

The Lord is his name.

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[4:13]  1 tn Heb “For look, the one who.” This verse is considered to be the first hymnic passage in the book. The others appear at 5:8-9 and 9:5-6. Scholars debate whether these verses were originally part of a single hymn or three distinct pieces deliberately placed in each context for particular effect.

[4:13]  2 tn Or “declares” (NAB, NASB).

[4:13]  3 tn Or “his thoughts.” The translation assumes that the pronominal suffix refers to God and that divine self-revelation is in view (see 3:7). If the suffix refers to the following term אָדַם (’adam, “men”), then the expression refers to God’s ability to read men’s minds.

[4:13]  4 tn Heb “he who makes dawn, darkness.” The meaning of the statement is unclear. The present translation assumes that allusion is made to God’s approaching judgment, when the light of day will be turned to darkness (see 5:20). Other options include: (1) “He makes the dawn [and] the darkness.” A few Hebrew mss, as well as the LXX, add the conjunction (“and”) between the two nouns. (2) “He turns darkness into glimmering dawn” (NJPS). See S. M. Paul (Amos [Hermeneia], 154), who takes שָׁחַר (shakhar) as “blackness” rather than “dawn” and עֵיפָה (’efah) as “glimmering dawn” rather than “darkness.”

[4:13]  5 tn Traditionally, “God of hosts.”

[5:8]  6 tn Heb “darkens the day into night.”

[5:9]  7 tn The precise meaning of the Hebrew verb בָּלַג (balag, translated here “flashes”) is uncertain.

[5:9]  8 tn Heb “comes upon.” Many prefer to repoint the verb as Hiphil and translate, “he brings destruction upon the fortified places.”

[9:5]  9 tn The words “will do this” are supplied in the translation for clarification.

[9:5]  10 tn Or “melts.” The verb probably depicts earthquakes and landslides. See v. 5b.

[9:5]  11 tn Heb “all of it.”

[9:5]  12 tn Heb “the Nile.” The word “River” is supplied in the translation for clarity.

[9:5]  13 tn Or “sinks back down.”

[9:5]  14 sn See Amos 8:8, which is very similar to this verse.

[9:6]  15 tc The MT reads “his steps.” If this is correct, then the reference may be to the steps leading up to the heavenly temple or the throne of God (cf. 1 Kgs 10:19-20). The prefixed מ (mem) may be dittographic (note the preceding word ends in mem). The translation assumes an emendation to עֲלִיָּתוֹ (’aliyyato, “his upper rooms”).

[9:6]  16 tn Traditionally, “vault” (so ASV, NAB, NRSV). The precise meaning of this word in this context is unclear. Elsewhere it refers to objects grouped or held together. F. I. Andersen and D. N. Freedman (Amos [AB], 845-46) suggest the foundational structure of a building is in view.

[9:6]  17 sn Verse 6a pictures the entire universe as a divine palace founded on the earth and extending into the heavens.

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