Amos prophesies that Tyre's fortresses would fail

Bible passage: Amos 1:9-10
Prophet: Amos
Written: About 750 BC

In Amos 1, the prophet Amos, one of the 12 minor prophets of the Old Testament, gave a series of prophecies against the nations that surrounded the land of Israel, including Damascus, Gaza, Tyre, Edom and Ammon.

In Amos 1:9-10, the prophet specifically addresses Tyre, an island nation that was north and west of the land of Israel. Tyre was part of the Phoenician empire, and was often antagonistic toward Israel.

Along with its wealth and power, Phoenician Tyre was extremely secure. It consisted of an island stronghold in the Mediterranean Sea and a portion of mainland. By some accounts, some stretches of a wall protecting the island exceeded 100 feet in height.

But for all of Tyre's success and security, Amos, who lived about 2,800 years ago, foretold of a bleak future for Tyre.

Amos said that God would cause Tyre's protective fortresses to fail, as punishment for the way that Tyre treated Israel.

That prophecy was fulfilled in 586-573 BC when Babylonian king Nebuchadnezzar attacked the mainland of Tyre, and in 333-332 BC when Alexander the Great conquered the island of Tyre.

Alexander's army built a land bridge from the mainland to the island so that they could use a battering ram to break through the island's fortress.

The destruction of Tyre contributed to the permanent demise of the Phoenician empire.

And the island itself is no longer a proper island. It is now connected to the mainland of modern-day Lebanon, in the form of a peninsula, and has been ever since Alexander built the land bridge.

Amos is one of the Old Testament's twelve minor prophets: Hosea, Joel, Amos, Obadiah, Jonah, Micah, Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah, Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi. Each has a book named after them in the Old Testament of the Bible. They are called "minor" because their books are smaller than those of the major prophets: Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, and Daniel.

To read more about Amos:

People in the Bible: Amos

The prophecies of Amos

- Research and commentary is based on the book 100 Prophecies. © Ray Konig and AboutBibleProphecy.com.

Here is Amos 1:9-10:

This is what the Lord says: "For three sins of Tyre, even for four, I will not turn back [my wrath]. Because she sold whole communities of captives to Edom, disregarding a treaty of brotherhood, I will send fire upon the walls of Tyre that will consume her fortresses."

(New International Version translation)