Joel's arresting imagery—blasting trumpet, darkened sun and marching hosts—has shaped the church's eschatological vision of a day of wrath. Amos's ringing indictments—callous oppression, heartless worship and self-seeking gain—have periodically awakened the conscience of God's people.
Twenty-five-hundred years after they were first born, those prophetic words never fail to awaken and arrest. Viewed against the background of their culture and society, artistry and context, these visions and oracles take on even more vibrant colors and cleaner lines.
This commentary is a valuable guide to the fascinating world and challenging word of these two prophets. Ever mindful of the wider context and composition of these ancient but living texts, David Hubbard shows how Joel and Amos addressed Israel's mind and heart.
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“The difference between the two stages is not that the first is material and the second spiritual but that the first is the restoration of old damage and the second is the inauguration of a new era in God’s dealings with his people.” (Page 72)
“Amos’ dominant emphasis is Yahweh’s rejection of Israel’s social and religious practices. ‘The sum total of his visions and oracles is contained in a single word: ‘no’” (Page 111)
“Israel’s horizons needed expanding. They should have viewed themselves as belonging exclusively to God; instead, they viewed God as belonging exclusively to them.” (Page 135)
“emblems that violate their present relationship to God (Wolff)” (Page 196)
“For Amos’ ministry, then, a date between 760 and 755 bc seems to have gained almost unanimous support among scholars” (Page 92)