“Because they have rejected the law of the Lord and have not kept His decrees, because they had been led astray by false gods, the gods their ancestors followed, I will send fire on Judah that will consume the fortresses of Jerusalem.” Amos 2: 4-5
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Today we will start a series on the book of Amos, looking at Amos 1 and 2. Amos was a simple shepherd who herded sheep and tended to sycamore-fig trees. He was not the son of a prophet or priest, but he was a man of God.
Amos became known as a man of God because when God gave him a vision, he acted. He did not stay home with his family where it was safe and easy. He went out into the land and delivered a hard message to a people whose life was going well and did not want to hear about God, repentance and deliverance.
In the first two chapters of Amos, God say’s eight times “For three sins…even for four, I will not relent.” God is showing that these nations had sinned again and again, they refused to stop and listen to God. The verses go on to describe the destruction that this attitude will bring to these people and to their land.
As I get more involved with the S.T.O.P. Human Trafficking ministry in my community, I can see so many parallels to the book of Amos, that is why I am following God’s prodding to do a study of this book. When I read about the complacency, the idolatry and the evil that the people of Israel are doing, I cannot help but see the common thread to our world today.
I think that believing in God is more than just having faith – God calls us to work against injustice in society and to fight for those less fortunate.
This is sometimes a challenge for me, I find myself not wanting to leave my safe, comfortable home and family and go into an ugly world. I want to cling to my naivety and turn a blind eye to what is going on in the world. But today as I read the first two chapters of Amos, knowing that God put this book on my mind for a reason, I am recommitting myself to the work that needs to be done to fight against the injustice in society, in my own community, and in my own backyard.
I feel like we need to be reminded to keep our hearts soft, to remain obedient, to not become complaisant. We need to seek God all the days of our life and not let times of peace and wealth lead us astray into believing that just because we once made a commitment or covenant with God we can sit unmoved in our faith. God has not called us to a quiet faith. In Amos 1:2 it says that “the Lord roars from Zion and thunders from Jerusalem.” I want my faith to roar out and I want to be obedient to the call of the Lord on my life. How about you?
Heavenly Father, I pray that I not be able to sit in complacency or in fear, but that I would be willing and able to walk in faith with you. I pray that my faith would roar with purpose, movement and intent and that I would never turn a blind eye to what is going on in my world, knowing that you have called us to make a difference. Amen