Summary: There is a famine in the land, not because there is no water and food available, but because we are not taking the water and food to those who are hungry and thirsty.
Famine – meaning starvation, deprivation, a shortage, in need, in want.
Famine is lack, insufficiency, hardship, distress
Famine is the opposite of abundance
In this chapter of Amos, God is pronouncing judgment on Israel. God showed Amos a basket of ripe fruit and He told Amos it was representative of the people of Israel, because they were ripe, or ready for punishment. God was tired; the merchants were keeping religious festivals, but not in the spirit. They couldn’t wait for the holy days and Sabbaths to be over so they could go back to making money. All they were really interested in was doing better for themselves, even if it meant cheating others; if it meant being immoral and deceitful; taking advantage of others. Their heart was not in worship, it was on themselves. They put on a religious front for others, but God knew their hearts, and He was not pleased. Because the people didn’t have an appetite for His Word, God said He would take it away.
There are many scriptures in the Bible that speak of famines and droughts. This particular scripture is speaking of a famine of the Word of God. This particular scripture is speaking of an absence of God’s Word; An absence, a shortage…A time of hunger and thirsting for the Word of God…running from sea to sea, from north to east, and to and fro, seeking and searching for the Word and not finding it.
Can you imagine that? Can you imagine what the world would be like if there was a spiritual famine? …what it would be like if the Word was not available. If there were people who were searching for the Word and could not find it….If people were searching and seeking for the Truth and found nothing….What would this world be like?
We would probably have mentally ill people walking the streets; prisons filling up; drug addicts going in and out of rehab without change, without Christ; AIDS spreading; new diseases, parents killing children, children killing parents, children killing children; children would be abandoned; there would be same sex marriages; there would be more divorces than marriages; people would be shacking up, fornicating and committing adultery; there would be hate crimes; terrorist attacks; people losing jobs, people losing homes, people starving, senior citizens would not be able to buy their medicine; there would be senseless wars; ... we would see all types of horrible events going on in the world day after day, getting worse and not better....If we had a spiritual famine in this land, men would be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God.
If we were in a spiritual famine.
I know what you are thinking..Gee it sounds a lot like the world today..It sounds a lot like America today…But it can’t be…We can’t be experiencing a spiritual famine..Not with all of the churches on every corner..Not with all of the Christians walking around…Not with all of the people professing to be witnesses and ambassadors of Christ. We could not be experiencing a spiritual famine, because that could only happen if there were no people hearing from God, and we know that people are hearing from God, because they say they are hearing from God. People are saying that God told them to tell you how you can get a new house and a new car and how you can have the best of everything because your Father is rich and owns everything.
So we cannot be experiencing a spiritual famine in this land, because people are on television telling us how to buy some cloths and purchase some water so we can be healed and we can be delivered and we can experience the power of God in our finances and in our home. There are prophets on television telling us that we can send them money and they will send us a prophetic word about our life. There can’t be a spiritual famine in this land.
With all of the church buildings and all of the church people, how could there be a spiritual famine in this land. Yes, I know that it looks like there it is a spiritual famine in the land; it seems that there is an absence of God’s Word in the land; it appears that there is a shortage of God’s Word for the lost, the hurting, the oppressed, the depressed, the addicted, the unsaved, the backslidden, the confused and abused.
It looks as if those who are searching for hope can’t find it…And those that say they have hope, won’t share it.
I suppose that if there were many people without food, and a few people who had food, but would not share it, it would appear that there was a famine in the land. If there was plenty of food, but the distributors of the food would not issue the food to those who needed it, there would still be a famine in the land.