Amos 2:12


King James Version (KJV)

But you gave the Nazarites wine to drink; and commanded the prophets, saying, Prophesy not.

American King James Version (AKJV)

But you gave the Nazarites wine to drink; and commanded the prophets, saying, Prophesy not.

American Standard Version (ASV)

But ye gave the Nazirites wine to drink, and commanded the prophets, saying, Prophesy not.

Basic English Translation (BBE)

But to those who were separate you gave wine for drink; and to the prophets you said, Be prophets no longer.

Webster's Revision

But ye gave the Nazarites wine to drink; and commanded the prophets, saying, Prophesy not.

World English Bible

"But you gave the Nazirites wine to drink, and commanded the prophets, saying, 'Don't prophesy!'

English Revised Version (ERV)

But ye gave the Nazirites wine to drink; and commanded the prophets, saying, Prophesy not.

Clarke's Amos 2:12 Bible Commentary

But ye gave the Nazarites wine - This was expressly forbidden in the laws of their institution. See Numbers 6:1-3.

Prophesy not - They would not worship God, and they would not hear the voice of his prophets.

Barnes's Amos 2:12 Bible Commentary

But ye gave the Nazarites wine to drink - Literally, "and," (this, on their part, was the consequence of what God did for them) "ye caused the Nazarites to drink wine." God appointed; Israel strove to undo His appointment. God "raised up Nazarites," as a testimony to them; they sought to make His servants break their vow, in order to rid themselves of that testimony. Their pains to destroy it, is a strong proof of its power. The world is mad against true religion, because it feels itself condemned by it. People set themselves against religion and the religious, the Church or the priesthood, only when and because they feel their power on God's side against them. What people despise, they do not oppose. "They kill us, they do not despise us," were true words of a French priest, as to the "reign of reason" in the first French revolution. If the people in power had not respected the Nazarites, or felt that the people respected them, they would not have attempted to corrupt or to force them to break their vow. The word, "cause" them "to drink," does not express whether they used constraint or seduction. Israel's consciences supplied it. Yet since they "persecuted the prophets" and put them to death, it seems likely that Amos means that they used violence, either by forcing the wine into their mouths, as the swine-flesh was forced into the mouth of Eleazar (2 Macc. 6:18), and, in the Decian persecution an infant was made to eat of the idol oblation , or by threat of death.

And commanded the prophets, saying, Prophesy not - God had commanded the prophets to prophesy. Israel issued and laid upon them his commands against the commands of God. The more God reveals His Will, the directer and more determinate the opposition of those who will not yield. God's perseverance in trying to win them irritates them; they oppose grace, and are angered at not being let alone. This large statement of Amos means much more than the prohibition of Amaziah to himself Amos 7:13. Jeroboam I was prevented only by miracle 1 Kings 13:4 from seizing the prophet who denounced the altar at Bethel. Ahab, during the famine foretold by Elijah, sought him everywhere to destroy him 1 Kings 18:10-12, and Jezebel, after the miracle at Carmel and the death of her prophets, swore by her gods to do so 1 Kings 19:2-3. Ahab's last act was to imprison Micaiah 1 Kings 22:26-27, the son of Imlath, for prophesying his death, when adjured by himself to speak truly.

Ahaziah, his son, undeterred by the fire from heaven which destroyed two captains, each with his fifty, sent yet a 3d to take Elijah, when he prophesied that the king would not recover from his sickness 2 Kings 1:9-13. Jehoram, his second son, swore by God to destroy Elisha, 2 Kings 6:31, laying the evils of the siege to the prophet, as the Romans did the evils of their decaying empire to the Christian. Micah and Isaiah, a little later, speak of such opposition, in Judah, as habitual Micah 2:6; Isaiah 30:10-11; much more in Israel, where the opposition to God's law was more fundamental, and where God's prophet's had been all but exterminated. Even Asa, in his degenerate days, imprisoned Hanani for prophesying that he would "have wars" 2 Chronicles 16:7, 2 Chronicles 16:10; Joash killed Zechariah son of Jehoiada 2 Chronicles 24:20-21; Amaziah silenced the prophet who rebuked him, "Art thou made of the king's council? forbear. Why shouldest thou be smitten?" 2 Chronicles 25:15-16.

Jehoiakim sent even into Egypt to fetch Uriah and killed him Jeremiah 26:20-23. Jeremiah's life was one continuous encounter with false accusations Jeremiah 20:10; Jeremiah 37:13; Jeremiah 38:4, contradictions by false prophets (Jeremiah 23:17 ff; Jeremiah 27:9-10, Jeremiah 27:14-16; Jeremiah 28; Jeremiah 29), hatred Jeremiah 15:10, mockery Jeremiah 17:15; Jeremiah 20:7-8; Jeremiah 23:33, persecution Jeremiah 17:18, imprisonment Jeremiah 20:2; Jeremiah 32:3; Jeremiah 33:1; Jeremiah 37:15-21; Jeremiah 38:6-13, attempts to destroy him (Jeremiah 11:18-21; Jeremiah 18:18, Jeremiah 18:20-23; Jeremiah 26:8 ff; Jeremiah 36:26). The complaint was, as here, "wherefore dost thou prophesy?" Jeremiah 32:3. What, when our Lord gives it as the characteristic of Jerusalem , that she was "the slayer of the prophets, the stoner of those sent unto her?" They would not have slain the prophets, if they could have silenced them.

People are loath to go to extremities with God; they will make an armistice with Him; their awe of holiness makes them inwardly shrink from laying hands on it. Like the wolf in the fable, they must have a plea against it; and that plea against those who have the truth is obstinacy . If the Christians would have abstained from converting the world, they would not have been persecuted. The Chief-priests at first sought simply to silence the Apostles Act 4:18, Acts 4:21; then they enforced their command with scourges Acts 5:40; then persecuted them and the Christians to death Acts 7:57-59; Acts 8:1-4; Acts 9:1-2; Acts 12:1-3; Acts 22:4-5. Direct contumacy to God's known voice and silencing His messenger, is a last stage of obduracy and malice, which leaves God no further avenue to the soul or the people. His means of grace are exhausted when the soul or people not only deaden His voice within, but obstruct it without. One who, through vehemence of his passions, refuses to hear, is within the reach of the grace of God, afterward. He who stifles God's word to others has mostly hardened his heart deliberately and maliciously in unlove to man, as well as contempt of God. Hence, God speaks, as though this brought the day of grace to a close.

Wesley's Amos 2:12 Bible Commentary

2:12 Ye gave - Importuned them to drink wine, to violate their vow, and contemn God's law.

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