6.15 Amos -- the Lion of Zion
The book of Amos is a prophetic Reader's Digest of the other early prophets. In this book we find themes treated at greater length in Isaiah and Jeremiah, as well as in some "minor prophets": God's judgment, Day of the Lord, Israel and the nations, future restoration.
Amos' ministry was contemporaneous with Jonah and Hosea in the early to mid 8th century. He was active during the reigns of Uzziah of Judah (792-740) and Jeroboam of Israel (793-753). It was a time of prosperity, national pride, and idolatry. Jeroboam II restored the North’s boundaries almost to the limits reached under Solomon (2 Kings 14:25); in the South, Uzziah/Azariah also made conquests (2 Chron 26:6-8).
Amos was from Judah. He was not one of the sons of the prophets, but was sovereignly picked by God:
"I was neither a prophet nor the son of a prophet, but I was a shepherd, and I also took care of sycamore-fig trees. But the Lord took me from tending the flock and said to me, 'Go, prophesy to my people Israel'" (Amos 7:14-15).