The Bible – Old Testament
Hear this word, O men of Israel, that the LORD pronounces over you, over the whole family that I brought up from the land of Egypt:
1 You alone have I favored, more than all the families of the earth; Therefore I will punish you for all your crimes.
Do two walk together unless they have agreed?
Does a lion roar in the forest when it has no prey? Does a young lion cry out from its den unless it has seized something?
Is a bird brought to earth by a snare when there is no lure for it? Does a snare spring up from the ground without catching anything?
2 If the trumpet sounds in a city, will the people not be frightened? If evil befalls a city, has not the LORD caused it?
Indeed, the Lord GOD does nothing without revealing his plan to his servants, the prophets.
The lion roars – who will not be afraid! The Lord GOD speaks – who will not prophesy!
3 Proclaim this in the castles of Ashdod, in the castles of the land of Egypt: “Gather about the mountain of Samaria, and see the great disorders within her, the oppression in her midst.”
For they know not how to do what is right, says the LORD, Storing up in their castles what they have extorted and robbed.
Therefore, thus says the Lord GOD: An enemy shall surround the land, and strip you of your strength, and pillage your castles,
Thus says the LORD: As the shepherd snatches from the mouth of the lion a pair of legs or the tip of an ear of his sheep, So the Israelites who dwell in Samaria shall escape with the corner of a couch or a piece of a cot.
Hear and bear witness against the house of Jacob, says the Lord GOD, the God of hosts:
On the day when I punish Israel for his crimes, I will visit also the altars of Bethel: The horns of the altar shall be broken off and fall to the ground.
4 Then will I strike the winter house and the summer house; The ivory apartments shall be ruined, and their many rooms shall be no more, says the LORD.
1  God’s choice of Israel brought its own responsibility.
2  The sufferings which sinful man experiences through the permissive will of God are presented here, as elsewhere in the Old Testament, simply as caused by the Lord.
3  Israel’s southern neighbors, beyond Judah, are invited by the prophetic orator to witness the moral disorders of God’s people.
4  Ivory apartments: rooms containing furniture inlaid in ivory, similar to the pieces discovered in the excavations at Samaria.