Amos (amos). [Heb. Amos, "burden," "burden bearer," from amas, "to lift (a load)," "to carry (a load)"; Gr. Amo µs].
1. A prophet of the town of Tekoa, in Judah, whom God sent with a message to the northern kingdom, Israel. The book of Amos is a record of that message and of his experience in delivering it. Our knowledge concerning the prophet is meagre and must be gleaned from his book. His home was in *Tekoa, a small town at the edge of the barren Wilderness of Judah that falls away in undulating hills to the Dead Sea, some 12 mi. (c. 19 km.) distant. Prior to his call to the prophetic office Amos was a shepherd who devoted a part of his time to tending sycamore trees and gathering their fruit, which resembles figs (ch 7:14). Although from one of the humbler walks of life, Amos was a man of natural intelligence, of a deeply religious bent, and with shrewd powers of observance. He was unassuming, but bold and fearless when called to bear witness against the evils of his day. The message he bore was graphic and powerful. Some have concluded from his mention of 5 of the neighbouring nations that he may have travelled as far as Damascus and Egypt (ch 1).
2. For Mt 1:10, RSV, see Amon, 2.