Amos “Burden-bearer” 3:1 – 4:13 Review • Amos was a shepherd and fig-gatherer called to be a prophet – Sent mostly to the northern kingdom of Israel – Though his message in chapters 1 & 2 was directed to 8 nations (including Israel) • Now we move to the second section of the book – Sermons against the sins of Israel – Each sermon begins with “Hear this word . . .” – There are three sermons • We’ll look at the first two in this lesson Fellowship with God • The nature of Israel’s fellowship with God – Amos 3:1-3 – Began from Egypt • God took special notice of them • God revealed Himself and His law to them – No other nation could claim such fellowship with God – Therefore, the sins of Israel must be punished • Other nations knew of Israel’s fellowship with God and might think God condoned the sins – After all, to have fellowship, both parties have to be agreed about their path Fellowship with God • Listening to warnings – Amos 3:4-8 – If you hear a lion roar, you know he has caught prey – If you see a bird caught in a trap, you know someone set the trap – If you see a trap sprung, you know something sprung the trap – If you hear a warning trumpet, you know the enemy is approaching – God has been warning through His prophets • God warns because He wants to have fellowship – And Israel is no longer on the path with God • You better pay attention and be afraid Fellowship with God • Public Punishment for Sin – Amos 3:9-11 – Outsiders will be witnesses to Israel’s punishment • Because Israel did not do what was right – Israel will be conquered, taken captive, and plundered Fellowship with God • A remnant saved – Amos 3:12-15 – As a shepherd might fight a lion to save a few scraps • God will save a remnant (small portion) of Israel from the punishment He just described • Those to be punished are described as living at ease on their couches – Further expanded to mean materialistic » Multiple houses » Expensive houses » Huge mansions Fellowship with God • Lessons – If you want to have fellowship with God . . . • You have to walk His path, not your own • If you get off His path – He will give warning, in His word • If you don’t listen to the warning – You will be punished • The few who do listen will be restored to God’s fellowship – Materialism is a sign that one is not in God’s favor • Oddly most people think wealth is a sign of favor Facing God’s wrath • The sins of Israel – Amos 4:1 – Bashan was excellent pastureland east of Jordan River • Well-known for its very fat cattle • Israel, under Jeroboam II, was like Bashan cattle – Overfed, under-worked – They were already well-off and got more by oppressing those who had less – And then celebrated their increased wealth Facing God’s wrath • God’s reaction – Amos 4:2-3 – Because of His holiness • Need to remain separate from sin – He will drag Israel way captive • Painfully (like dragged by fishhooks) – And He will destroy the walls of their cities • This is God’s warning of the consequences of their sin Facing God’s wrath • Sarcasm – Amos 4:4-5 – Considering God’s warning, God sarcastically tells Israel to . . . • Continue with idol worship (golden calves) in Bethel and Gilgal – Even says to increase their tithes (to their idols) from weekly to every 3 days • Might as well include leaven in their offerings – Silly to be worried about whether the offering has leaven when they are worshipping idols • Make a big fuss about your “piety” – Because you love being thought religious – If you are determined to ignore God, then you might as well completely ignore Him Facing God’s wrath • God warned, but no repentance – Amos 4:6-11 – He sent famine, no repentance – He sent drought, no repentance – He sent blight, mildew, & locusts, no repentance – He sent plague and war, no repentance – He destroyed some of their cities, no repentance • God had given them many warnings of their sin – They had refused to repent, maybe even refused to acknowledge the warnings as from God Facing God’s wrath • Prepare to meet your God – Amos 4:12-13 – If you won’t listen to His warnings – If you won’t repent of your sins – Then get ready to meet God! • He is the creator (omnipotent) • He knows all your thoughts (omniscient) • He can control nature (omnipotent) • He is everywhere (omnipresent) – He is Jehovah, God of hosts • Are you truly ready to stand face-to-face with Him and give account of your actions? Facing God’s wrath • Lessons – God knows all our sins – God has warned us, in His word, of the consequence of sin (Rom 6:23, etc) – If you don’t think you need to pay attention to God’s word, then you might as well stop pretending to follow it at all – If you won’t repent . . . • Prepare to meet your God! Conclusion • Are you in fellowship with God? – Are you walking His path or going your own way? – Are you more concerned with God’s word or with making money and accumulating material things? • Are you listening to God’s word? – Especially when He tells you that you are in sin • Have you repented (returned to God)? • Are you ready to meet your God?
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