Summary: Pentecost 21(B) - Seek the LORD and live!! This is absolutely necessary because our daily sins are great BUT God’s mercy is far greater.
“SEEK THE LORD AND LIVE” (Outline)
October 5, 2008 --
PENTECOST 21 --
INTRO: Today’s verses take us to the basic yet very vital core teaching of God’s holy word: sin and grace. Sin is our disobedience. Grace is God’s undeserved love for sinners. Today we discover anew God’s undeserved love for us revealed in his divine mercy, forgiveness. Jesus came as the Good Shepherd that we might have life, life to the full. True, our lives are full of sin. In grace God has now given us the full life – a life filled with forgiveness through Christ, our Savior. Amos comes with a call to repentance for the people of God. Other Old Testament prophets also sounded the call to repentance. In the New Testament John the Baptist and Jesus called for repentance because the kingdom of God was near. After Pentecost Peter preached to the crowd how they put to death the author of life. The crowd wondered what they were to do next. Peter replied: "Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord, and that he may send the Christ, who has been appointed for you--even Jesus" (ACTS 3:19,20). Today’s verses call us to
“SEEK THE LORD AND LIVE”.
I. Our daily sins are great.
II. God’s divine mercy is greater.
I. OUR DAILY SINS ARE GREAT
A. Amos was a prophet during great prosperity in Israel and Judah. The people lived in great luxury.
1. Spiritually speaking God’s people were morally bankrupt. They worshipped false gods.
2. Verses 7, 10. God’s people hated justice, cast righteousness to the ground, and hated truth.
3. Verse 12b. They did not try to hide their sins but displayed them in public, in the courts.
B. Verse 11a. The people mistreated the poor. The church was to provide for the poor.
1. God’s judgment was near, verse 6. Bethel was the town for their false worship of false gods.
2. Verse 11b. These people would not enjoy all their luxury and wealth that they worshipped.
C. The people thought everything was going great. God’s truth was different verse 12a. God knew.
D. We might wonder why these people did not listen. Why did they not repent? We often look around and wonder about everyone else and why they still continue in their sinful, disobedient living. But we are not without excuse. It is vitally important to note, it is extremely important to realize and understand and believe and confess that not one person is exempt from sin. In fact, just the opposite is true. By nature we are enemies of God. By birth we have inherited unrighteousness from our first parents, Adam and Eve. Just as certain as we live and breath on this side of heaven, we sin. Sadly we sin daily and we sin much. "All of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags; we all shrivel up like a leaf, and like the wind our sins sweep us away"(ISAIAH 64:6). It is that time of year when the leaves are blown here and there and everywhere. Thus our sins also sweep us away.
E. Who wants to take the blame for something bad? Who is willing to admit, “I am wrong”? Watching the daily events it appears that no one is guilty for anything, anywhere, at anytime. Those in authority in our nation are quick to fix the blame on the other party. Again, we are not exempt. Satan tries to blind our minds and spiritual thinking. Hard as it is to admit we have to agree with God’s word, “I sin daily and I sin greatly”. "If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word has no place in our lives"(1 JOHN 1:10). We may wonder how close our nation has come to this truth.
F. We may try to deny sin as if it never existed, especially in our own lives. We can try to reject sin, dismiss it or explain sin away. Sin is still with us as long as we are alive. We cannot escape. God has created us from the dust of the earth as living, breathing miracles. Our hearts constantly pump life giving, oxygenated blood to every living cell in our bodies. Spiritually our hearts are infected. "For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false testimony, slander" (MATTHEW 15:19). The soul who sins is the one who dies. None escape death because all are sinners.
“SEEK THE LORD AND LIVE”. Our sins are very great. No matter how great our sins, God’s divine mercy is greater. When we see our sins we recognize our great need for mercy. Christ brings mercy.