Summary: This sermon examines some of the problems facing America and the Church in America and calls on the Christian Community to confess, repent, and pray for our nation.
Title: Praying for America
Text: Amos 7:1-9,
Date: July 6, 2008 a.m.
Location: Sulphur Spring Baptist Church
Introduction: Friday was the fourth of July, the day we as Americans celebrate our Independance. I don’t think anyone would argue that God has richly blessed the United States of America during the last 232 years. Our Standard of Living and Quality of Life have been the envy of nations all around the world for many years.
But that may be chaning. The value of the U.S. dollar on world markets has dropped significantly in recent months. This is one of the contributing causes of the higher gasoline prices we are paying at the pump and at the grocery store right now. In an Interview with Bloomberg Television a couple of weeks ago, Steve Hank, who is a Professor of Applied Economics at Johns Hopkins University said that “we are in a recession and inflation is accelerating.” So from an Economic standpoint things are tough right now.
From a military standpoint we are still fighting The War on Terrorism in Iraq and Aphganistan, and now according to CNN the Bush Administration has sent U.S. Commando’s into Iran to spy on the countries nuclear facilities and to work with Iranian dissidents to undermine the Iranian government. At the same time Israel has made it clear that if the United Nations refuses to do anything about Iran’s Nuclear Ambitions that they will not hesitate to take matters into their own hands. Just last week the Israeli Air force held a massive airiel exercise in the Eastern Medditerian that many are saying was a practice run for what seems to be an innevidable military strike on Iran’s nuclear facilities. It now seems that it is not a matter of “if” Israel will bomb Iran, but a matter of “when.”
When that happens it very well could be the beginning of yet another war between Israel and its Arab neighbors. It that happens it would only be a matter of time before the United States and Russia would be drawn into the conflict, which might be setting the stage for the Battle of Gog and Magog, that is mentioned in chapters 37 & 38 of the book of Ezekiel.
From a political standpoint our nation has never been more polarized than it is today. Neither one of the two major political parties seem willing to work with the other to solve problems like illigal imigration or our dependance on foreign oil. All they seem to care about is being elected and staying in ’power.’
With all of this in mind, let me ask you a question. "What can we as American citizens and more importantly, what can we as Christians do for our country?"
As Christians the Bible teaches us that it is our responsibility to vote, pay taxes, and honor those in authority over us. Some Christians go a step further by serving in various capacities in local, state, and federal governments. But perhaps the most important thing that we can do for our country is something that we can all do, regardless of our age, or our physical abilities. I believe the most important thing that we as Christians can do for our country is to pray. That’s what the Prophet Amos did when God revealed to him that He was getting ready to judge the nation of Israel for its disobedience.
Background: Amos was shepherd, and a fig tree farmer. He didn’t have any formal religious training, he hadn’t gone to Seminary or even Bible college.
But God had a special assignment for him. God called him to deliver a very important message to the nation of Israel.
You see God had made the decision to judge the nation of Israel for their disobedience. In the seventh chapter of the book of Amos God revealed to Amos exactly how He was going to do that. Turn with me if you will to Amos 7:1-9.
When God revealed how He would bring destruction on the nation of Israel Amos fell on his knees and humbly cried out to God. He begged God to forgive the nation of Israel of her sins. When God heard Amos’ prayer saw his tears, He decided not to send the Locusts and fire upon the land of Israel as He had planned on doing.
Billy Graham, who has spent over 50 years preaching the gospel all over the world once said "If God doesn’t judge America, then He is going to have to Apologize to Sodom and Gomorah,” and I tend to agree with him.
In fact in my mind the question is really not a matter of if God will judge America, but when. In 1996, Jerry Falwell, the pastor of Thomas Road Baptist Church in Lynchburg, Virginia, and founder of the Moral Majority preached a sermon entitled “Is America under God’s Judgment.” In that sermon he said, “If America is NOT under the judgment of God…, I believe she is dangerously close.” Those are ominous words, words that we don’t like to hear, much less believe.