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Amos 9 – Skeptic's Annotated Bible answered

A response and reply to the notes on Amos 9 in the Skeptic's Annotated Bible (SAB).

King James Version

SAB comment

My comment

1 I saw the LORD standing upon the altar: and he said, Smite the lintel of the door, that the posts may shake: and cut them in the head, all of them; and I will slay the last of them with the sword: he that fleeth of them shall not flee away, and he that escapeth of them shall not be delivered.

"I saw the LORD standing upon the altar: and he said ..." Can God be seen?
(9:1-4) "I will slay the last of them with the sword."
God will "slay the last of them with the sword." Any that try to escape by diving to the bottom of the sea will be bitten, at God's command, by a sea-serpent. God will set his "eyes upon them for evil, not for good."
On if God can be seen, see chapter 7:7.
On slay, who are the “them”? Are they innocent, guiltless people? Or murderers and oppressors of the poor (Amos 6:8)?

2 Though they dig into hell, thence shall mine hand take them; though they climb up to heaven, thence will I bring them down:

3 And though they hide themselves in the top of Carmel, I will search and take them out thence; and though they be hid from my sight in the bottom of the sea, thence will I command the serpent, and he shall bite them:

4 And though they go into captivity before their enemies, thence will I command the sword, and it shall slay them: and I will set mine eyes upon them for evil, and not for good.

5 And the Lord GOD of hosts is he that toucheth the land, and it shall melt, and all that dwell therein shall mourn: and it shall rise up wholly like a flood; and shall be drowned, as by the flood of Egypt.

6 It is he that buildeth his stories in the heaven, and hath founded his troop in the earth; he that calleth for the waters of the sea, and poureth them out upon the face of the earth: The LORD is his name.

7 Are ye not as children of the Ethiopians unto me, O children of Israel? saith the LORD. Have not I brought up Israel out of the land of Egypt? and the Philistines from Caphtor, and the Syrians from Kir?

8 Behold, the eyes of the Lord GOD are upon the sinful kingdom, and I will destroy it from off the face of the earth; saving that I will not utterly destroy the house of Jacob, saith the LORD.

(9:8-10) "All the sinners of my people shall die by the sword"
God will destroy the "the sinful kingdom" and "all the sinners" among his people.
The sinful kingdom is Israel, see a list of their sins in chapter 6:8.

9 For, lo, I will command, and I will sift the house of Israel among all nations, like as corn is sifted in a sieve, yet shall not the least grain fall upon the earth.

10 All the sinners of my people shall die by the sword, which say, The evil shall not overtake nor prevent us.

11 In that day will I raise up the tabernacle of David that is fallen, and close up the breaches thereof; and I will raise up his ruins, and I will build it as in the days of old:

12 That they may possess the remnant of Edom, and of all the heathen, which are called by my name, saith the LORD that doeth this.

13 Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that the plowman shall overtake the reaper, and the treader of grapes him that soweth seed; and the mountains shall drop sweet wine, and all the hills shall melt.

14 And I will bring again the captivity of my people of Israel, and they shall build the waste cities, and inhabit them; and they shall plant vineyards, and drink the wine thereof; they shall also make gardens, and eat the fruit of them.

15 And I will plant them upon their land, and they shall no more be pulled up out of their land which I have given them, saith the LORD thy God.

"They shall no more be pulled up out of their land which I have given them."
Despite this promise, the Jews have been continually uprooted and their lives disrupted. Even today, their land ownership falls into question.
Yes, there are many nations and many people who do not recognise Israel. That has always been the case. But the Jews have not been continually uprooted. They were allowed to return to their country after their captivity, but were still subject to Cyrus. So although this promise was partially fulfilled, it wasn't completely. After they had rejected Jesus, they were only uprooted once more. And what did John Gill write somewhere between 1746 - 1763?

it appears that this is a prophecy of things yet to come; since the Jews, upon their return to their own land after the Babylonish captivity, were pulled up again, and rooted out of it by the Romans, and remain so to this day; but, when they shall return again, they will never more be removed from it; and of this they may be assured; because it is the land the Lord has, "given" them, and it shall not be taken away from them any more

He did not see the fulfilment, yet believed, while we live in the days it is fulfilled. The Jews own their own land and it will not be taken from them.