Joel's vivid and apocalyptic imagery and Amos' ringing prophetic legal indictments are obvious and clear. Anybody can, to one extent or another, understand destruction and guilt. What we do not understand, and what is so enigmatic about the prophets is the reasons why they speak in the manner that they do. Joel and Amos are paradigmatic examples of the OT prophetic ministry and both point to the violated law (Amos) and to the punishment that will ensue as a result (Joel). The key to writing a commentary on Joel and Amos lies in the ability to elucidate the background of the prophets; What in their context makes them speak the way they do? What are they basing their statements on? It is only when this has been accomplished that the foreground, Joel and Amos' vivid, catastrophic, and destructive pronouncements, can be well understood.The Tyndale Old Testament Commentary (TOTC) series is designed to help the reader of the Bible understand what the text says and what it means. The Introduction to each book gives a concise but thorough treatment of its authorship, date, original setting and purpose. Following, a Structural Analysis the Commentary takes the book section-by-section, drawing out its main themes, and also comments on individual verses and problems of interpretation. Additional Notes provide fuller discussion of particular difficulties. The goal throughout is to explain the true meaning of the Bible.
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