1. The Text :

NAS, Amos 9:13 - When the plowman will overtake [וְנִגַּ֤שׁ] the reaper ...

2. Question, A Word-Study :

These are at least two very different understandings of "overtake" in this text.

How are those interpretations supported by the texts - and which translations are more valid? : overtake or bring together?

How should "Overtake" be interpreted?

  1. Overtake in Speed, or might? v.13 Treader of Grapes overtakes the sower or seed, because they are growing so fast; but - isn't this inconsistent in v.13, where the plowman overtakes the reaper - which may be expected/typical and therefore an unnecessary statement?
  2. To Bring Together, or To Draw Near? BUT - if "Overtake" is actually, "draw near", or "bring together", it feels as though the text is indicating a unity between people of different roles, laboring together, and enjoying the fruits of those labors together.

Which is supported by the underlying languages and contexts?

3. Hebrew Terms and Context :

Before and after this verse, I feel that the passage is speaking of restoration and unity between peoples, and fulfillment of duties - and everyone participating in unity - is this valid?

Further, the term "overtake" is used to translate, "וְנִגַּ֤שׁ" - and so in Amos 9:10 - but doesn't seem translated this way in the rest of Scripture ... But rather, "Come near, or become present", etc.

Note: I am hoping for an answer which cites another similar text / construction - as a guide to understand these constructions here: from Hebrew or Greek Scripture, or even secular literature of that time.

Thanks for the help!

  • Possibly what is meant in John 4:38 "I have sent you to reap that in which you did not labour: others have laboured, and you have entered into their labours." Dec 13 '17 at 11:49

Rashi states that the seasons will be so bountiful that the plowing and reaping seasons will overlap, therefore the plowman "will meet" (וְנִגַּ֤שׁ) the reaper. This is in keeping with the next phrase that the one shearing the grapes will meet the planter and the mountains will drip with juice.

  • "Meet" actually does make a bit more sense. Great insight. Thank you. +1 Jul 19 '17 at 23:52

The Plowman is one that digs deep turning up secrets of the soil or laying bare! He will overtake the reaper or those that are presently enjoying the life they live or enjoying the fruit of someones labor! The high places will give up their abundance for the high places are made low and the low places are made even. Finally those that have been forced to labour in another's field shall be shown to be worthy and blessing will be theirs.

The plowman is a servant, the reaper is a owner of the field! The one shearing grapes is a servant, the planter is the owner of the field. this scripture speaks of Gods chosen throwing off the shackles of oppression through revelation of the spirit!

  • +1, because I think I understand where you are going with this answer - that it is an example of Jesus' teachings about "The least will be the greatest". However, this is the Book of Amos - and it would help if we can find those teachings / ideas actually in this context. Can you provide a textual argument for this, (while considering that Amos was written before the Gospels were written)? And welcome to Hermeneutics! Most questions here are looking for well-referenced / expert answers. Thanks! Dec 13 '17 at 1:46

In Amos 9:13 - What does “The Plowman will Overtake the Reapers” Mean?

At Amos 9:13-15 Are God's blessings to the restoration of Israel

Amos 9:13 (NASB)

13 “Behold, days are coming,” declares the Lord, “When the plowman will overtake the reaper And the treader of grapes him who sows seed; When the mountains will drip sweet wine And all the hills will be dissolved.

The figurative language of the prophecy at Amos 9:13 “The Plowman will Overtake the Reapers” Means that God will make the soil very fertile so that the harvest will still be going on when the time comes to plow for the next season.

Read also.

Leviticus 26:5 (NASB)

5 Indeed, your threshing will last for you until grape gathering, and grape gathering will last until sowing time. You will thus eat your [a]food to the full and live securely in your land.


Amos 9 verses 11,12 and 13: The Bible, e.g. Saint James Bible or any Bible one refers too, it states the same thing! It's just that, God's Holy Name has been erased in my Bible. So I am trying to help God Vindicate his Name as should all Mankind.

Look, it's Simple!

We need to look at verses 11-13 to get the gist of it!

Mankind loses respect for his creator in the book of Genesis -- the beginning of time on Earth. God has to restore and vindicate his own Name and Authority to gain respect back for himself! So, he rebuilds and takes out a people for his name amongst the nations through the stream of time -- obviously man dies so quickly so this restoration is passed on.

When the job of declaring the good news of The Kingdom is handed down to another nation, if that nation forfeits and eats blood (Leviticus chapter 11) or allows man to marry man and woman to marry woman, then those kind of actions will make a very loving God very angry! And rightly So!! Why don't they listen, He must ask himself?

He is only pleased with the nation that is telling all mankind of the big restoration that is taking place on earth right now, and for the future to come. Gods commandments are not burdensome -- one man for one woman, abstain from blood as it is sacred. It's not Rocket Science!

A lot of doctors and surgeons are now allowing none blood surgery, as this has proved very safe and useful for saving lives. Overtime, through medical Science, it has become known that a lot of diseases in a lot of cases in blood Transfusions where blood cells have been dead before entering the body, because a lot of blood cells die on shelves in blood banks therefore resulting in pain and suffering, and most of all Death has shown it's ugly face!

Anyway getting back to the question of The Plowman and the harvester.

Jesus did not just sit in one place of worship to preach the message, he travelled around on foot. All mankind, especially the churches of Christendom, should recognise that they must listen to Gods commandments -- let he who has an ear to listen, listen to what the Spirit says to the congregation -- God's name is (JEHOVAH) THE ALMIGHTY!

God's name has been taken from the Original Bible Manuscripts so people on earth did not know God and his precious name.

The Plowman will overtake the harvester means: Jehovah's Witnesses do what Jehovah God expects of them. The Church of England and the Catholic church, also the rest of Christendom, DOES NOT. Therefore the Plowman will overtake the Harvester!

  • Thank you for reading my very long comment! xx Teresa
    – user37984
    Aug 4 '20 at 17:26
  • Welcome to BH.SE. Please take the tour to get a better idea of how this site functions. I have added paragraphs to your answer to make it more readable. Tiy cab do that by pressing the Enter key twice at the end of each separate idea you are expressing. You can modify my edit, if you wish. Your answer would better if you explicitly state WHO is the plowman and WHO is the harvester, and then support that with references to the text of Scripture.
    – enegue
    Aug 4 '20 at 23:49

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