Amos, Obadiah and Jonah Questions and Answers
Minor Prophet Books: Amos, Obadiah and Jonah
Amos, Obadiah and Jonah are all minor prophets. The book of Amos has five chapters, Obadiah has only one and the classic fish tale of Jonah has four chapters. Since these were all shorter books, I combined the Bible questions and answers of these minor prophet books, Amos, Obadiah, and Jonah into a single article.
Amos the prophet of God called to the Israelites for them to repent from their sins of idolatry and self-righteousness to receive God’s blessings again. He also told of coming judgement against the northern kingdom of Israel.
What is a “herdsman” in Amos 1:1? This is a keeper of animals like sheep or cows, etc. Similar to a shepherd but not exclusively a keeper of sheep.
What does God mean if you do three transgressions He will do nothing but if you do four transgressions, He will hurt you? The term for “For three transgressions…and for four…” this is figurative for excess, repeated, many transgressions.
Back in that time when someone played a trumpet something bad was to take place? The trumpet was a signal to sound an alarm.
What is a “tumults” in Amos 3:9? Tumult – confusion and disorder, chaos. The plural of this word means that there are many of these events.
Who or what is “kine of Bashan” in Amos 4:1? “Kine” is a term for “cows”. What God is saying through the prophet Joel here is a warning for those rich men of Samaria who oppress the poor and needy. God is calling them well fed cows and is warning them of judgment from Him.
In Amos 4 God was telling the people all that He done to them and they still did not turn back to Him. Yes, you are right.
Who are they talking about in Amos 5:2? “The virgin of Israel” refers to the entire state or country of Israel which was for hundreds of years independent and never conquered by foreigners. Now because of their idolatry, God has allowed them to be conquered, spoiled by invaders.
What are the seven stars in Amos 5:8? This is a reference to a common constellation. I am not sure which one exactly. Orion is also the name of a constellation.
Who would trust in a mountain (Amos 6:1)? The term “mountain” here means kingdom. Specifically in this context it is a reference to the kingdom of Samaria.
What can’t 10 men live one house in Amos 6:9? They can, but what this verse is saying that even if people band together, to help each other, they will all still die.
Why are they saying Jacob is small? The nation of Israel sometimes referred to as “Jacob” was reduced by calamites because of God’s judgments.
God was letting grasshoppers eat up all of the grass to punish His people. Yes, there was a famine in the land which would happen if all of the green plants were destroyed by insects and the locusts also represent all of the nations that God allowed to come and wreak havoc on the land as punishment.
Amos was to go in the land of Judah. Amaziah just wanted to get rid of Amos since Amos was obeying God.
What is a herdsman? This is a keeper of animals like sheep or cows, etc. A herdsman is similar to a shepherd but not exclusively a keeper of sheep.
What do “shewed me” in Amos 8:1? “Shew” is an old fashioned spelling for our word “show”. So read this as “showed me”.
What does God mean “I will not again pass by them anymore.” in Amos 8:2? God is saying that His people Israel are ripe for His judgments and He will not withhold them anymore.
What does “making the ephah small” mean in Amos 8:5? The ephah was a measure of weight. These people were diminishing the actual weight of good while at the same time charging more for less.
Did people were shoes back then? Yes, they did.
Did the Lord GOD made the sun go down at noon in Amos 8:9? No this was yet in Amos’ future. Either this means that there would be a natural disasters like an earthquake which sometimes darkens the sky prior to happening or it could be that God’s judgment would be so serve that the people would feel that everything was dark and gloomy even in the middle of the day.
Nobody was speaking the Word of God. The people did not want to hear God so He said the He would not have His Word spoken because sometimes you don’t appreciate what you have until it is gone.
What does “Beersheba” mean in Amos 8:14? Beersheba was a place where Jereboam set up golden calves to worship.
I just don’t understand Amos 9. Verses 1-10 describe a vision where God declares the final ruin of the kingdom of Israel and the scattering of His people. Verses 11-15 are looking forward to the kingdom age.
Book of Obadiah
Obadiah the prophet prophesied telling that God will judge those who are against His people. Obadiah’s prophecy was specifically against the Edomities.
What are they talking about in Obadiah 1:1? This is referring the enemies of Israel, the Edomites, who were descendants of Esau. God is saying that He will stir up the Assyrian against them because they were prideful and hurt Israel.
Finished with Amos and Obadiah? Continue your Bible study with questions on Jonah.
Book of Jonah
While the book of Jonah has only four short chapters, this classic fish tale is one of the most popular Bible stories. And not only is it true history, there is much to learn from a prophet who wanted to die rather than serve God.
Why didn’t Jonah want to go to Nineveh? Jonah was both scared of the wicked people of Nineveh and he was angry with them He wanted God to destroy the city and all of the wicked people in it. In Jonah 4: 2 Jonah is talking to God and he is angry that God spared Nineveh after they repented. Jonah knew that if the people of Nineveh repented that God would not destroy them and Jonah wanted them dead.
Where is Tarshish? Bible scholars disagree as to where exactly Tarshish was. But the idea is that it was a place very far from Israel.
What does it mean that they cast lots in Jonah 1:7? The sailors cast lots to determine who was at fault for this vicious storm casting lost was a method used at time in the Bible to determine God’s mind. Lots could be stick with markings or stones with symbols, or any similar object that was thrown and then interpreted. Although these were heathen sailors casting lots, God used this to single out that He was trying to get the attention of Jonah.
Why did Jonah want to be thrown overboard in Jonah 1:12? Jonah knew that God allowed this terrible storm because he was running from God. Jonah did not want the others to suffer so he felt that if he was dead – drowned – then the storm would cease that the sailors and the ship would be safe. Jonah would have rather been dead than to serve God at Nineveh.
Was the fish that swallowed Jonah a whale? According to what I was taught, the Hebrews classified all the sea dwelling animals as “fish”. Jesus in Matthew 12:40 specifies this fish as a whale. Even though whale can swallow humans, this particular sea creature was specially prepared by God to swallow Jonah, so this was no ordinary fish.
Why did the king sit in ashes in Jonah 3:6? The king was repenting before God of his wickedness. Sitting in ashes is a sign of repentance. The king repented of his wickedness and therefore set the example for all the people in his kingdom.
Why did they make the animals to fast also in Jonah 3:7? These people were so convinced of the coming judgment that they made their animals to fast and to sit in ashes also. Since the animals were an extension of their owners, the animals were also an extension of the owners’ wickedness and therefore when the owners repented before the Lord, they wanted their animals to repent also as an extension of their own repentance.
Why was Jonah angry in Jonah 4:1? God saw the Ninevites true repentance and so He did not destroy them. Jonah was angry because he wanted Nineveh destroyed.
In Jonah 4:11 who are the persons that cannot discern between their right and left hands? I believe that this is a referent to children. God knew that in Nineveh there were more than 12,000 thousand children.
Finished with the minor prophet books of Amos, Obadiah and Jonah? Go to Micah.