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Book of Amos: Chapter 7

In chapters 7, 8 & 9, Amos records his interaction with God and the visions that God showed him. This interaction is similar to that seen with Jeremiah and other prophets as they were challenged about their message by the leadership.

God allows Amos to see 3 visions of what He would do in His judgment of Israel. But in response to Amos’ pleas, God relented from the judgments that would totally destroy Israel’s food and water supply. Instead, He chose to destroy the places that represented corrupt power, immorality and idolatry. These were the source of Israel’s culture which brought it out of line with God’s prescribed standards for the behavior of His people. Amos could not argue with that. Defeat by war would at least preserve those who went into exile.

Of course Amos was challenged by the high priests who solicited the King’s support to ban Amos from Israel. They were not happy about Amos’ prophecy of the death of the king and the exile of Israel. They referred to Bethel as the king’s sanctuary, and the temple of the kingdom. This was probably true because it was no longer God’s. Amaziah the priest accused Amos of coming to Israel to earn money as a false prophet! Amos defends himself by letting Amaziah know that he didn’t ask to be a prophet. This was not a vocation of his choosing and that he had a respectable vocation prior to being called by God but could not remain quiet once God had spoken. We have seen this also with Jeremiah who said God’s words were like fire in his bones with relief only when he spoke them. Jonah also tried to escape when he was called to prophesy but couldn’t.

Because of King Jeroboam’s disbelief, God gave Amos a specific prophecy of death and exile for the king and his family, adding that neither he nor anything else would prevent Israel’s destruction at God’s command. In speaking of God, Amos uses the term Sovereign Lord as if reinforcing a reminder that He is the one true God of all creation.

Key Verse:
Then the Lord said, “Look, I am setting a plumb line among my people Israel; I will spare them no longer.” ~ Amos 7:8b

Questions to ponder:

  • If God were to hold a plumb line to your life, what do you think He would find?
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