Summary: Where is your walk with Christ? Do people see Christ in you?
This is the story of Amos. He was a common man, sheepherder, a layman; dedicated to serving God and his actions spoke for him. God told Amos to warn the Israelites of judgment coming because of their disobedience, complacency, idol worship, they oppressed the poor, they were hypocritical, and they had no true heart for God.
In chapters 1 – 2
Amos announces judgments to fall on nations that came against Israel. God then tells of judgments to come to Judah and Israel. People asked what they had done. They began to sound like the Pharisee in Luke 18.
In chapters 3 – 6
Amos gives the reasons why God would bring judgments. The children of Israel had sinful lives; they used religious rituals and traditions to make themselves look good. They were more concerned for their image. Amos mourns for Israel and how God despises Israel’s pride.
Are people today more concerned with their image or their attitude at a church service or even in their daily Christian lives? Too many people in today’s society use the church as a social club, a single’s club or a daycare center.
In chapters 7 – 9
Amos tells of the visions of judgment that would come to pass, Israel’s destruction, and tells of Israel’s restoration.
Today’s focus on chapter 4, God used different situations to get Israelites to turn lives back to Him.
In verses 1-5, we see that the people were showing off, they were putting themselves on display and wanted to be seen. They wanted recognition. They were more interested in serving self and were not submitted to God’s will.
Matthew 23:5, ‘But all their works they do for to be seen of men: they make broad their phylacteries, and enlarge the borders of their garments,’
Seven warning signs given were given to the children of Israel.
In verse 6, ‘cleanliness of teeth’ refers to famine/starvation
In verses 7 – 8, ‘withholden the rain from you’ refers to drought, they had no water
In verse 9, ‘blasting and mildew’ refers to blight, a plant disease; ‘palmerworm’ – insects ate the plants
In verse 10, ‘pestilence’ – is human disease; ‘slain with the sword’ – war was everywhere
In verse 11, ‘destruction of cities’ – homes, buildings destroyed
Have we seen any of this in our lifetime? You can watch any television news station and see this all over the world, some right here in our own country.
In verses in 12-13, we see that God would pass judgment and that the people were told to be prepared to meet Him. No matter how God warned the people, through famine, drought, plague, locusts, plagues, or war, they still ignored God. And since they ignored God and did not understand the message, they would have to meet God face to face in the judgment. They had rejected God and refused to obey Him.
People of today…
Are the people of the church today just as sinful if we live like the people in this passage of Scripture? What will God have to do with people today to make them get their hearts right with God? What must happen to Christians so that they begin to act and be as Christ wants them to be? Are we a Church of Casual Christianity? Are we Cardboard Christians? What will it take to bring us back to God?
Too many people acknowledge the existence of God but not the sovereignty of God.