Amós 4

Study the Inner Meaning

Spanish: Reina Valera (1909)         

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1 OID esta palabra, vacas de Basán, que estáis en el monte de Samaria, que oprimís los pobres, que quebrantáis los menesterosos, que decis á sus señores: Traed, y beberemos.

2 El Señor Jehová juró por su santidad: He aquí, vienen días sobre vosotros en que os llevará en anzuelos, y á vuestros descendientes en barquillos de pescador.

3 Y saldrán por los portillos la una en pos de la otra, y seréis echadas del palacio, dice Jehová.

4 Id á Beth-el, y prevaricad; en Gilgal aumentad la rebelión, y traed de mañana vuestros sacrificios, vuestros diezmos cada tres años;

5 Y ofreced sacrificio de alabanza con leudo, y pregonad, publicad voluntarias ofrendas; pues que así lo queréis, hijos de Israel, dice el Señor Jehová.

6 Yo también os dí limpieza de dientes en todas vuestras ciudades, y falta de pan en todos vuestros pueblos: mas no os tornasteis á mí, dice Jehová.

7 Y también yo os detuve la lluvia tres meses antes de la siega: é hice llover sobre una ciudad, y sobre otra ciudad no hice llover: sobre una parte llovió; la parte sobre la cual no llovió, secóse.

8 Y venían dos ó tres ciudades á una ciudad para beber agua, y no se hartaban: con todo no os tornásteis á mí, dice Jehová.

9 Os herí con viento solano y oruga; vuestros muchos huertos y vuestras viñas, y vuestros higuerales y vuestros olivares comió la langosta: pero nunca os tornasteis á mí, dice Jehová.

10 Envié entre vosotros mortandad al modo que en Egipto: maté á cuchillo vuestros mancebos, con cautiverio de vuestros caballos; é hice subir el hedor de vuestros reales hasta vuestras narices: empero no os tornasteis á mí, dice Jehová.

11 Trastornéos, como cuando Dios trastornó á Sodoma y á Gomorra, y fuisteis como tizón escapado del fuego: mas no os tornasteis á mí, dice Jehová.

12 Por tanto, de esta manera haré á ti, oh Israel: y porque te he de hacer esto, aparéjate para venir al encuentro á tu Dios, oh Israel.

13 Porque he aquí, el que forma los montes, y cría el viento, y denuncia al hombre su pensamiento; el que hace á las tinieblas mañana, y pasa sobre las alturas de la tierra; Jehová, Dios de los ejércitos, es su nombre.

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   Study the Inner Meaning
Chapter summary

Exploring the Meaning of Amos 4      

By Helen Kennedy

In chapter 4 of the Book of Amos, verses 1-3 talk about people who pervert the truths of the church. They will fall into falsities in outermost things. Fish are lower things, so it follows that fishhooks (verse 2) would mean being caught and held fast in natural or lower things.

Verses 4-6 talk about things of worship such as tithes and sacrifices. These look similar to genuine worship, but are only in outermost things. We can tell because ‘teeth’ (verse 6) represent ultimates or outermost things (Secrets of Heaven 6380), so it follows that “cleanness of teeth” would mean outermost things that look good but only imitate genuine worship. The Lord exhorts, “Yet you have not returned to me.”

Verses 7-8. Some things true will remain, when the rest are false, in consequence of which truths will have no power. This can be seen where the Lord says, “I made it rain on one city; I withheld rain from another city... where it did not rain the part withered.” Again the Lord exhorts, “Yet you have not returned to me.”

Verse 9. Afterward all things of the church are falsified, shown in how blight attacked the gardens, vineyards, fig tree and olive trees. The last three represent spiritual, natural and celestial things, or all the things of spiritual life. “Yet you have not returned to me,” says the Lord.

Verses 10-11. The Lord explains the devastating things he allowed to happen: plague in Egypt, death of young men by swords, stench in the camps, Sodom and Gomorrah. This is because they are profaned by sensual knowledges - profanation meaning the mixing of good and evil together (Secrets of Heaven 1001:2).

This extends to all things of the church, the church being the Lord’s kingdom on earth (Secrets of Heaven 768:3).

With profanation “as soon as any idea of what is holy arises, the idea of what is profane joins immediately to it” (Secrets of Heaven 301).

Now there is hardly anything left. “Yet you have not returned to Me,” says the Lord again.

Verses 12-13. Because people adamantly remain in their profane ways, they are warned, “Prepare to meet your God!”. This is the God powerful and mighty, “who forms mountains, and creates the wind,” and even more close to home, “Who declares to man what his thought is.” As intimately a knowing as that is, the Lord’s love for all humanity is contained in His exhortations for them to turn themselves to Him.

See, for example, Luke 6:44-45, and True Christian Religion 373.

From Swedenborg's Works

Main explanations:

The Inner Meaning of the Prophets and Psalms 204

Other references to this chapter:

Arcana Coelestia 382, 1069, 1453, 2165, 2220, 2799, 2842, ...

Apocalypse Revealed 336, 439, 474, 496, 502, 862

The Lord 49

References from Swedenborg's unpublished works:

Apocalypse Explained 403, 405, 513, 532, 556, 560, 608, ...

Other New Christian Commentary

  Stories and their meanings:

Hop to Similar Bible Verses

Génesis 19:24

Éxodo 9:3

Levítico 7:12, 13, 22:18, 26:23

Números 21:33, 28:3

Deuteronomio 21, 42

Rut 1:1

2 Reyes 8:1, 13:7

Job 9:7, 24:4

Salmos 89:36

Proverbios 22:7

Isaías 1:1, 11, 9:12, 28:1, 45:7, 56:12

Jeremías 3:3, 5:3, 10:13, 14:3, 16:16, 46:18, 50:40

Ezequiel 20:39, 34:16

Oseas 9:15, 11:5, 12:6

Joel 1:4

Amós 2:7, 8, 3:1, 3, 9, 10, 5:5, 8, 11, 27, 6:7, 7:1

Miqueas 1:3, 2:2, 3:2

Hageo 2:17

Zacarías 3:2

Mateo 23:23

Word/Phrase Explanations

'Word,' as in Psalms 119:6-17, stands for doctrine in general. 'The Word,' as in Psalms 147:18, signifies divine good united with divine truth. 'Word,' as...

'The heifer whereby labor has not been done,' as mentioned in Deuteronomy 21:3, signifies the innocence of the external self, which is in ignorance. 'The...

'Hills' signify the good of charity.

'Samaria,' as in Amos 4:1. 6:1, signifies the spiritual church perverted.

The Lord, in the simplest terms, is love itself expressed as wisdom itself. In philosophic terms, love is the Lord's substance and wisdom is His...

The Lord swearing by himself signifies that divine truth testifies, for He is divine truth itself, and this testifies from itself and means itself. It...

The Bible describes many things as being holy, or sacred. The Ark of the Covenant is one very holy object. The inmost chamber of the...

'A palace,' as in Psalm 144:12, represents the understanding in which truths have a beautiful form. They have a beautiful form when they are from...

As with many common verbs, the meaning of “to say” in the Bible is highly dependent on context. Who is speaking? Who is hearing? What...

The Bible refers to the Lord in many different ways, which from the text seem indistinguishable and interchangeable. Understood in the internal sense, though, there...

When Jacob had his famous dream, of a staircase leading to heaven, he named the place "Bethel," which is Hebrew for "the house of God."...

Gilgal signifies the doctrine of natural truth, serving for introduction into the church.

Morning comes with the rising of the sun, and the sun – which gives life to the earth with its warmth and light – represents...

'Tithes,' as in tenths, signifies goods and truths stored up from the Lord in a person’s interior self. These goods are called remains. When these...

The Writings talk about many aspects of life using the philosophical terms "end," "cause" and "effect." The "end" is someone’s goal or purpose, the ultimate...

'A son,' as in Genesis 5:28, signifies the rise of a new church. 'Son,' as in Genesis 24:3, signifies the Lord’s rationality regarding good. 'A...

de israel
'Israel,' in Jeremiah 23:8, signifies the spiritual natural church. The children of Israel dispersed all the literal sense of the Word by falsities. 'The children...

'Tooth,' as in Exodus 21:24, denotes the exterior understanding, and natural truth.

Just as natural food feeds the natural body, so spiritual food feeds the spiritual body. And since our spiritual body is the expression of what...

'A month' has respect to the state of truth in a person. 'A month' signifies a full state. Month,' as in Genesis 29, signifies the...

'A harvest' symbolizes the state of the church with respect to Divine truth. The reason is that a harvest yields the grain used to make...

Cities of the mountain and cities of the plain (Jer. 33:13) signify doctrines of charity and faith.

'Rain,' in a positive sense, denotes blessing, but in the opposite sense, damnation Rain,' as in Genesis 2:5-6, Exodus 34:25-27, and Hosea 6:3, signifies the...

The number "two" has two different meanings in the Bible. In most cases "two" indicates a joining together or unification. This is easy to see...

'Waters' signify truths in the natural self, and in the opposite sense, falsities. 'Waters' signify particularly the spiritual parts of a person, or the intellectual...

'A vine' signifies spiritual good and truth. 'A vine' or 'vineyard' signifies the church where the Word, and the Lord in it, is known, or...

When we eat, our bodies break down the food and get from it both energy and materials for building and repairing the body. The process...

'Pestilence' denotes the vastation of good and truth.

'Mizraim' signifies the same thing as Egypt.

A 'sword,' in the Word, signifies the truth of faith combating and the vastation of truth. In an opposite sense, it signifies falsity combating and...

'A horse' signifies knowledges or understanding of the Word. In an opposite sense it signifies the understanding of the Word falsified by reasonings, and likewise...

The Lord is love itself, expressed in the form of wisdom itself. Love, then, is His essence, His inmost. Wisdom - the loving understanding of...

"Sodom" in the Bible represents the love of self and the love of ruling or dominating others springing from the love of self. This is...

Because a nearer and stronger divine influx through the heavens disperses truths among the wicked, 'wind' signifies this dispersion of truth and the resulting conjunction...

la tierra
"Earth" in the Bible can mean a person or a group of like-minded people as in a church. But it refers specifically to the external...

'Lands' of different nations are used in the Word to signify the different kinds of love prevalent in the inhabitants.

Armies of the heavens and the sands of the sea ('Jeremiah 33:15-22') signify the knowledges of truth and good in the spiritual and natural ma{ign21}

It's easy to see that names are important in the Bible. Jehovah changed Abram and Sarai to Abraham and Sarah, changed Jacob to Israel and...