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December 15 | Amos 9:11-15


 

DAILY READING

 

REFLECTION


Israel's Restoration

by David Thompson


When we think about writers of the Bible, we usually think of learned men who held the titles of rabbi, priest, apostle or other man of God designations, however Amos would not fit any of these titles. He was a layperson, an ordinary fellow who herded sheep and tended to orchards. He was just a man with a passion for God. He could be sitting in one of our pews if he lived today, and we might not be the wiser.


This man received a vision from God and instead of sitting on it, he set out for the northern kingdom of Israel. This didn't include the southern kingdom of Judah. We know from other studies that the two regions of Israel had disagreements and had broken away from each other. Each had their own king. Although both kingdoms were worshiping idols, Amos's warning was given to the northern kingdom alone. Some of what Amos was bringing did filter to Judah. His message was one of warning about what would happen if the Israelites continued to live the way they were living.


The book of Amos opens up in the desert of the southern kingdom with a shepherd tending his sheep. God gave him a vision of impending doom and directed him to go. He did. He spoke to a number of residents of northern Israel. The book tells of the story of all of Amos's efforts and failures. The residents of the north didn't repent and continued on with their sinning ways. Complacent in their ways and their lives, God through Amos predicted doom and exile. We today should examine ourselves and check the complacency meter as it is easy to fall into that way of thinking.


God was slow to anger as He is with us, but His wrath was brought full force when He had enough. Great suffering and turmoil was brought upon the people who continued to sin. However, their was hope. In Chapter 9:11-15, we read that those who remained would be lifted up and restored by God. God's promise of a godly ruler in the line of David was fulfilled by Christ and His resurrection. This promised kingdom was to include the remnants of Edom (a gentile people). This gives hope to us all that we are GOD'S chosen people as well. And, what does God expect in return; going to church and being good - NO. He expects us to believe in Christ and to have that belief penetrate into all areas of our lives.


PRAYER

Dear God,

It is hard to read about your wrath as it is a harsh reminder that even though the book of Amos happened during the Old Covenant. We are now in the New Covenant, when things seem less harsh, your promises of end times judgement is real. Help us pay attention to the Amos's that come into our lives and ask the Holy Spirit to come along side each of us to help to put our lives in order. You are a great and patient God, but help us understand that we do have responsibilities to you. We are forever grateful for your provision and love for us. Amen!







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