The Run Down
Read Amos 3-4
Review quickly setting and opening.
Chpt. 2: vs. 6-8 Israel’s crimes.
Vs. 9-11 God’s active response.
Vs. 12 Israel’s response.
Vs. 13-16 God’s punishments.
Vs. 1-2 “Hear this word that the Lord has spoken”…
Who is the Great Prophet Priest King who speaks in similar language centuries later. Jesus.
Matthew 13:18-19 “Hear then the parable of the sower: 19 When anyone hears the word of the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what has been sown in his heart. This is what was sown along the path.
Israel… could be all encompassing for Judah too… but seems to hone in on Israel (northern kingdom).
God brought “Jacob-Israel-Hebrews” out of Egypt.
He chose them. He revealed Himself to them. They were “elected”… yet freely rebelled.
YHWH. Then the Covenant Law: Torah.
And they rebelled.
So now He will hold them to a higher standard than the nations…
And punish them for all their sins.
He will pick back up on this “punishment” but not until vs. 11.
Vs. 3-6 The answer to all the following questions in verses 3-6 is “No”.
Ultimately…. God is sovereign over all things.
And to some “Positive Preachers” dismay… even disasters can come from God.
Now not everything because we are wretched sinners… as Jesus will speak to about a tower falling on some men…. However… there is a general understanding that indeed God is in control of all… and yes…. Sometimes even the punishing.
Will we not be willing to accept the good and the bad from the Lord?
Or will we only serve Him… if He “serves” us… as we see fit?
Vs. 7-8 God is a revelatory God. He reveals His plan. By means of His prophets by His Holy Spirit.
Today… He revealed Himself fully in Jesus Christ, and via the indwelt Holy Spirit, leads us in all truth… as revealed in His Holy Scriptures.
Jesus said… he sets the lamp on the table…
21 And he said to them, “Is a lamp brought in to be put under a basket, or under a bed, and not on a stand? 22 For nothing is hidden except to be made manifest; nor is anything secret except to come to light. 23 If anyone has ears to hear, let him hear.”
Vs. 9-10 God will call the nations… Ashdod (Philistines) and Egypt to metaphorically come and “see” … oppression that is the worst… and it’s by the One’s He showed favor to… in Samaria. The capital of Israel.
How embarrassing…. Revolting it must be for the Israelites to hear Amos calling their enemies to their capital to expose them and their sins.
Again… God is very upset about Oppression.
Also violence and robbery.
And this is not against other enemies… it is against their very own people.
Would you rather be the prophet Amos… or Jonah?
Called to preach doom of your own people in front of your enemies…
Called to preach repentance in your enemies lands and succeed?
So… let me ask you… in the last 5 years… what did you do… to help the needy, fight oppression, support widows/orphans/homeless… give justice to the poor?
What about in the last year?
What do you have planned for this year?
Let us not be lazy “Orthodox” Evangelicals… relaxing “ALL” the time on the porch. Let’s be active…. “Orthopraxis” Orthodox Evangelicals.
Vs. 11-12 “Therefore”…. Very important… punishment is deserved.
Does Amos know it will be Assyria. Is that revealed. He is simply sure of this judgment… which does indeed actually occur within some 20-50 years.
In OT a shepherd for the land owner could prove he didn’t steal the sheep by providing bits and pieces retrieved from the lion’s kill. Ex. 22:13.
Also the couch and bed an allusion to their comfort in wealth that will end similarly by the Lion of Zion.
He will punish the altars of Bethel… cutting the horns off alludes to the safety one fleeing for their lives could do in the Tent… to save their.
From this period… archeologists have excavated buildings with ivory… referencing their wealth.
Ok… let’s get personal… if you have multiple homes… much less one good nice one… most in the world do not. No you can’t save the world… but you can do your part. Are you doing your part? 10%… more? Tithes… Offerings? Gifts? Sacrifices?
Jesus said you shouldn’t neglect the latter but also do the first?
23 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you tithe mint and dill and cumin, and have neglected the weightier matters of the law: justice and mercy and faithfulness. These you ought to have done, without neglecting the others.
The great houses shall come to an end, The Lord declares.
Bashan became known for its pastures and mountains.. where cows were bred and grazed.
Amos will in a very unpolitically correct way liken the women of Samaria to these cows.
Oppressing the poor and crushing the needy.
They call to their husbands to bring them more drink.
They want more… the husbands need to work more… oppress more… to get for them.
Amos doesn’t clarify who “they” are… but “they” are indeed coming to get you and pay you back what you deserve… for you don’t delight and want the things the Lord wants… thus you will reap what you have sown.
The breaches stand for the fact that an invading army has broken through the walls… and once that happens… you are done for.
Bethel was where the covenant stayed at one time… and at both Bethel and Gilgal worship had been established by Jeroboam I as the kingdoms had split.
And Jerusalem is in the south.
He seems to exaggerate here purposefully by saying things above what the law required… sacrifices everyday and tithes every 3 days… (supposed to be 3 years)…
“publish them”…. Brag about your giving… ha…. God hates this!
God will do these things… and yet “they don’t return to him”…. 5 times.
Clean teeth… no food.
Blight and mildew…
Defeat in war….
Overthrown likened to Sodom and Gomorrah… ouch.
Prepare to meet your God.
Are you ready to meet your God?
I mean… why wait to get ready… why wait to moan and regret on your deathbed…
I’m 42… dang… where did 22 go?
I hear it from my grandmother…. At 89…
I know I will feel the same…. Where did it go…
So let’s get ready now… let’s build the right house…
Let’s obey and follow him today…. Not tomorrow.
What else do you need?