Talk:Amos 3:1-5

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Verse 3-6[edit]

I really don't feel like I understand this passage. I posted my current thinking in hopes that others might be able to offer more insights to how I'm reading this.... --RobertC 15:36, 24 Sep 2006 (UTC)

Verse 4 seems significant but I don't understand it. The interpretation given would seem to be supported just by the first question. So, why the second question? To me it seems odd that the word "young" is thrown in. Whatever verse 4 is doing, it seems related to verse 8 "The lion hath roared, who will not fear." --Matthew Faulconer 04:02, 25 Sep 2006 (UTC)
Interestingly Matthew Henry interprets the lion in verse 8 as a warning before tearing. He cites Judg 14:5 as an example. He also cites Hosea 5:14 noting that God is as a young lion to the house of Judah. I got this from the Blue Letter Bible but they purposefully make it a pain to link to their pages. Also this quote (also from the Blue Letter Bible) is interesting. It is from Jamieson, Fausset & Brown's commentary.
The lion roars loudly only when he has prey in sight. Will a young lion cry out . . . if he--the "lion," not the "young lion." have taken nothing?--The young lion just weaned lies silent, until the old lion brings the prey near; then the scent rouses him. So, the prophet would not speak against Israel, if God did not reveal to him Israel's sins as requiring punishment.
I'm not sure that it all works. --Matthew Faulconer 04:14, 25 Sep 2006 (UTC)
So the lion is God (or perhaps justice?) and the young lion is the prophet? Interesting thought, thanks (and for the provocative x-refs). It might also be significant that verse 4 focuses on the perspective of the predator (the perspective of God or his prophet) whereas verse 5 focuses on the prey's perspective (the perspective of Israel). Together verses 4 and 5 address both sides of the relationship proferred in verse 3. Also, I thought I read about a lion being a symbol for the tribe of Judah. I don't have any ideas about bird symbolism. That might very well be a dead end approach to this passage, but I don't have a lot of other ideas.... --RobertC 19:12, 25 Sep 2006 (UTC)

Aren't all the questions, and then verse 7 also, just rehashings of the first one? Can two walk together, unless they be agreed? Two things only work together if there is some connection between them. Isn't the point to say that there is, if you will, causality or relation. Lions roar only when food is the question, birds go into the trap for the bait, the trumpet blows and people are scared, etc. One thing leads to the other, the other betrays the one, etc. Hence, two things go together: the vision of the council ("secret" is a terrible translation of swd) given to a prophet, and the "doings" of Jehovah. The pair are always together. Am I reading this too simplistically? --Joe Spencer 17:13, 26 Sep 2006 (UTC)

Joe reading too simplistically?! Somebody pinch me, I can't really be reading this. I think the relationship aspect is probably the primary purpose, but why does Hosea pick lions and birds, and why the predator-prey and hunter-trap examples? Surely these aren't just completely arbitrary (though I agree there's a danger of looking too hard for meaning that's not there...). --RobertC 00:00, 27 Sep 2006 (UTC)
I also smiled when I read Joe saying "Am I reading this too simplistically?" On this and other places, I find difficult to set some objective criteria for what the right amount of simplicity/meaning we should read into a given passage. I think the criteria has something to do with how much of a stretch an intepretation seems/how strained it is. When the interpetation seems more strained, it seems like we have gone too far. Still maybe different people have different comfort-levels of "stretch". In general when confronted with this problem, maybe the right thing to do is to start with the simpler reading and then proceed to a less simplistic reading after and more tentatively. --Matthew Faulconer 13:53, 27 Sep 2006 (UTC) PS Robert, impressive additions on the lexical notes.

I do believe someone else wrote that paragraph on my own behalf! I would never have called myself simplistic!

I think my point there was just to say that I hadn't seen the obvious said yet. Once the obvious has been said, let us get down to this business of what each of the questions is doing. It seemed that we were seeing trees and not the forest. With the forest in place, what of the trees? It is first of interesting that there are seven questions, especially in light of the mention of the council in verse 7. Beyond that, I suppose I would have to look at each of the questions in some detail. I will dedicate some time to this tomorrow, perhaps. --Joe Spencer 16:42, 27 Sep 2006 (UTC)