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Amos 5

Seek Me That You May Live

Hear this word which I take up for you as a funeral lament, O house of Israel:
She has fallen; she will not rise again—
The virgin Israel.
She lies abandoned on her land;
There is none to raise her up.
3 For thus says Lord Yahweh,
“The city which goes forth one thousand strong
Will have one hundred left,
And the one which goes forth one hundred strong
Will have ten left to the house of Israel.”

4 For thus says Yahweh to the house of Israel,
“Seek Me that you may live.
But do not seek Bethel,
And do not come to Gilgal,
Nor cross over to Beersheba;
For Gilgal will certainly go into exile,
And Bethel will become evil.
Seek Yahweh that you may live,
Lest He come mightily like a fire, O house of Joseph,
And it will consume with none to quench it for Bethel,
For those who overturn justice into wormwood
And put righteousness down to the earth.”

He who made the Pleiades and Orion
And overturns the shadow of death into morning,
Who also darkens day into night,
Who calls for the waters of the sea
And pours them out on the surface of the earth,
Yahweh is His name.
It is He who flashes forth with devastation upon the strong
So that devastation comes upon the fortification.

They hate him who reproves in the gate,
And they abhor him who speaks with integrity.
Therefore because you impose heavy rent on the poor
And take a tribute of grain from them,
Though you have built houses of cut stone,
Yet you will not live in them;
You have planted desirable vineyards, yet you will not drink their wine.
For I know your transgressions are many and your sins are mighty,
You who distress the righteous and take bribes
And turn aside the needy in the gate.
Therefore at such a time the one with insight keeps silent, for it is an evil time.

Seek good and not evil, in order that you may live;
And thus may Yahweh God of hosts be with you,
Just as you have said!
Hate evil, love good,
And set justice at the gate!
Perhaps Yahweh God of hosts
May be gracious to the remnant of Joseph.

16 Therefore thus says Yahweh God of hosts, the Lord,
“There is wailing in all the plazas,
And in all the streets they say, ‘Alas! Alas!’
They also call the farmer to mourning
And professional weepers to wailing.
And in all the vineyards there is wailing
Because I will pass through the midst of you,” says Yahweh.

Woe, you who are longing for the day of Yahweh,
For what purpose will the day of Yahweh be to you?
It will be darkness and not light;
As when a man flees from a lion
And a bear meets him;
Or he goes home, leans his hand against the wall,
And a snake bites him.
Will not the day of Yahweh be darkness instead of light,
Even thick darkness with no brightness in it?

“I hate, I reject your feasts,
Nor do I delight in your solemn assemblies.
Even though you offer up to Me burnt offerings and your grain offerings,
I will not accept them;
And I will not even look at the peace offerings of your fatlings.
Remove from Me the tumult of your songs;
I will not even listen to the melody of your harps.
But let justice roll down like waters
And righteousness like an ever‑flowing stream.
25 “Did you present Me with sacrifices and grain offerings in the wilderness for forty years, O house of Israel? 26 You also carried along Sikkuth your king and Kiyyun, your images, the star of your gods which you made for yourselves. 27 Therefore, I will make you go into exile beyond Damascus,” says Yahweh, whose name is the God of hosts.