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Amos, Chapter 5 Amos 5 û Exegesis (54635) Merriam-Webster's Co

Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary (1999:406) defines "exegesis" as "EXPOSITION, EXPLANATION; esp: an explanation or critical interpretation of a text". Before getting into the formal, traditional, and critical redaction of the Old Testament prophet Amos' chapter 5, I will put the text in historical context.

Based on the inscription at the beginning of his book, Amos was a herdsman from the town of Thecua, a Southern Kingdom village twelve miles to the south of Jerusalem in what is now the modern state of Israel. According to his writings, he was called to his mission by God as he was tending his flocks of sheep. How an unlettered sheherd could write some of the most deathless prose poetry in the history of world literature, such as the text attributed to Amos, is something that Biblical scholars have debated for generations. The Catholic Encyclopedia's passage on Amos ( explains that "to associate inferior culture with the simplicity and relative poverty of pastoral life would be to mistake totally the conditions of Eastern society, ancient and modern. For among the Hebrews of old, as among the Arabs of the present day, the sum of book-learning was necessarily small, and proficiency in knowledge and oratory was chiefly dependent not on a professional education, but on a shrewd observation of men and things, a memory retentive of traditional lore, and the faculty of original thought".á

Be that as it may, the mission that Amos undertook was a daunting one. He was from the Southern Kingdom of Judah. The more powerful, wealthy, and cosmopolitan Northern Kingdom of Israel, ruled by Jeroboam (c.781-741 B.C.), had conquered its traditional enemies in Syria, Moab, and Ammon, thereby virtually restoring the empire of Solomon. His rule marked a period of peace and great prosperity. But amidst the wealth and extravagant excess three cultural tendencies in religious observance became the target of Amos' witheri...

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Amos, Chapter 5 Amos 5 û Exegesis (54635) Merriam-Webster's Co. (1969, December 31). In Retrieved 02:34, February 23, 2017, from