A Dresser of Sycamore Trees ~ St. Amos

An Old Sycamore Tree in Israel
Before serving as a prophet in the northern kingdom of Israel, Amos was a herdsman and a "dresser of sycamores."  The sycamore of Israel is also referred to as a mulberry fig and produces a small fruit - edible, but not known for having a great taste.  The job of the dresser was to puncture the fruit days before it was to be gathered to help with the ripening process.  Sycamores were also known for offering nice shade.

Amos answered to Amaziah, "I was no prophet, nor have I belonged to a company of prophets; I was a shepherd and a dresser of sycamores."
   - Amos 7:14  

Other Biblical References to Sycamores

1)  King Solomon was given credit for bringing about as many cedar trees as the sycamores in the foothhills of Israel (1 Kings 10:27 and 2 Chronicles 9:27).

2)  An overseer for King David named "Baal-hanon the Gederite" was in charge of the olive trees and sycamores of the foothills (1 Chronicles 27:28).

3)  The writer of Psalm 78 reminds readers of the plague of hail upon the Egyptians:

He killed their vines with hail,
    their sycamores with frost.
                                                                   - Psalm 78:47

4)  Isaiah made a brief mention of sycamores when writing about the fall of the northern kingdom (Israel):

Sycamores are felled,
           but we will replace them
with cedars. 
- Isaiah 9:9b   

5)  Zacchaeus the Tax Collector climbed a sycamore tree in order to get a good view of Jesus in Jericho (Luke 19:4).