Summary: THE CAUSE & CURE FOR COMPLACENCY IN THE CHURCH
COMPLACENCY IN THE CHURCH
BACKGROUND: The people of the Northern kingdom (Israel), even while thinking themselves secure, stood doomed for their rejection of the Lord and His ways.
TEXT: Amos 6:1-14
Amos 6:1 Woe to them that are at ease in Zion, and trust in the mountain of Samaria, which are named chief of the nations, to whom the house of Israel came!
"Woe" is a word of lament. Amos is lamenting the wicked lifestyles of those in Zion, which will result in the captivity and destruction noted in the last part of this chapter.
"At ease" means they were complacent, or had a false sense of security.
"Zion" was the place the temple of God stood in Jerusalem.
"Samaria" was a fortress built on a mountain overlooking Jerusalem
1 Ki 16:24 And he(Omri) bought the hill Samaria of Shemer for two talents of silver, and built on the hill, and called the name of the city which he built, after the name of Shemer, owner of the hill, Samaria.
Verse one says they trusted in the mountain of Samaria.
1. Amos preached in a time, which was similar to ours in many ways.
2. The people of Israel felt that they were the greatest nation on earth; the same as many feel about America.
3. The people of Jerusalem felt secure, because of their temple and fortress of Samaria, but they were living to steal murder, commit adultery, oppress the helpless, and follow other gods.
4. In America today sin runs rampant; abortion (the killing of the unborn) has become a way of life. Alcohol, tobacco, and drug abuse is out of control, and responsible for the killing of thousands of our people.
5. As a whole, our people are more concerned about material possessions, money, entertainment, the pursuit of pleasure, increased leisure time, etc. than they are anything about God or His church.
Realizing that we have been grafted into the vine, and are now part of the Body of Christ, the Church, I would like to re-word the verse slightly. "Woe to them who are at ease in the Church"
I. THE CHARGE IS COMPLACENCY.
Amos 6:4 That lie upon beds of ivory, and stretch themselves upon their couches, and eat the lambs out of the flock, and the calves out of the midst of the stall;
Amos 6:5 That chant to the sound of the viol, and invent to themselves instruments of music, like David;
Amos 6:6 That drink wine in bowls, and anoint themselves with the chief ointments: but they are not grieved for the affliction of Joseph.
There is a description of complacency here.
(1). Their homes, furnishings, and clothes were the best. v4a
(2). They ate the best of food, and as much as they desired. v4b
(3).Their attention was primarily on things of entertainment and pleasure.v5
(4). They drank intoxicants by the bowl full. v 6
This sounds to me like a description of America today; much of it could also be applied to the church.
(1) We must have the best in the way of homes and furniture, & clothes
(2) We eat the best of food, and to much of it.
(3) Our attention is primarily on entertainment and pleasure.
(4) There is much drunkenness and drug addition in our nation today.
II. THE CAUSE OF COMPLACENCY.
1. The people of Israel had enjoyed a time of great prosperity; they could have one of two reactions:
(1). They could react as most were doing; showing pride and boastfulness. They were living extravagantly, and took all the credit for their prosperity themselves.
(2). They could have reacted in humility, realizing that the blessings of God were the source of what they were enjoying.
2. Their trust was in their military might. v 1 (the mountain of Samaria)
3. They had no serious thoughts. v 3 (The evil day - the day of Judgement)
4. They made the pursuit of prosperity their primary objective. v 4
5. They were not grieved or concerned at all about the condition of their nation. v 6b (the affliction of Joseph - They were not grieved that Joseph was rejected and afflicted by his brethren.) Here, Joseph is a type of Christ, rejected and afflicted by the world.
6. And we are not grieved for a world that afflicted and then rejected Christ!
Note: The causes of complacency in the church are very well described here. We have been raised and live in the most affluent nation in the world. We are accustomed to a lifestyle that would be viewed as extravagant by most of the rest of the world.
1. We trust much in our military might, many in our country seem to have no serious thoughts about anything, least of all their relationship to God.