Scripture Reading – Amos 6-9
Amos 6 continues the prophet’s declarations of “woes”, against Israel, identified as Samaria, and Judah, identified as Zion (6:1). Identifying Philistine and Syrian cities that had fallen to the Assyrian army, Amos questioned if Israel and Judah were foolish enough to believe the same would not soon befall them (6:2).
In spite of the clouds of judgment on the horizon, the people continued to indulge themselves, resting on “beds of ivory”, eating “the lambs out of the flock;” entertaining themselves with music, drunkenness and reveling in pleasures till they were carried into captivity bearing the chains of slavery (6:4-7).
Six prophetic visions: Five Prophecies of Judgment and the Sixth of the Day the LORD will Establish His Heavenly Kingdom. (Amos 7-9)
Amos 7 – Three Judgments
The First Judgment: Locusts (7:1-3)
God had determined to bring locusts to devour the people’s second harvest (7:1). Amos pleaded with the LORD for the people and He “repented” (7:3). Though the sins of the people demanded His judgment, the LORD heard the prayer of His prophet and, because He is longsuffering, God determined to withhold His sentence for a season.
Reminder: “The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much” (James 5:16b)!
The Second Judgment: Fire (7:4-6)
Fire drying up water is a picture of the drought God planned to bring against His people. Once again, God heard the intercession of His prophet and “repented” (7:6).
The Third Judgment: A Plumb Line (7:7-9)
The plumb line is a tool used by a builder to make sure a wall is straight. God’s plumb line of judgment is His Law. Seeing the plumb line of God’s Law and Commandments and the failure of the people to obey and keep the Law, Amos did not intercede for Israel (identified as “the house of Jeroboam”).
Truth – Preachers who faithfully declare the Word of God often find themselves in conflict with government and religious authorities.
The priest Amaziah, whom King Jeroboam II had appointed to serve as “the priest of Bethel,” warned the king that the prophet Amos “hath conspired against thee” (7:10) prophesying, “Jeroboam shall die by the sword, and Israel shall be led away captive” (7:11). Amaziah admonished Amos there was no place for him in Israel (7:10-11) and demanded the prophet flee to Judah (7:12).
Rather than heeding the warning of God’s judgment against the nation, Amaziah demanded the prophet be silent and “prophesy not again” (7:13). Amos rehearsed God’s call upon his life, and though he was a man of common stock and not the son of a prophet, the LORD had called him to prophesy, and he would not be silent (7:14-15). Rather than silence, Amos boldly declared God’s judgment (7:16-17).
Amos 8 – The Fourth Judgment: Fruit harvested at the end of the summer season, expressing the imminence of God’s judgment.
Amos 9 – The Fifth and Final Judgment, and a Vision
The final judgment prophesied by Amos was a vision of the temple destroyed (most likely not the one in Jerusalem, but the idolatrous one established by Jeroboam I in Samaria at Bethel). Amos warned, “All the sinners of my people shall die by the sword” (9:10).
The prophecies of Amos would come to pass. Israel, the northern kingdom consisting of ten tribes, was the first to be taken captive, and scattered “among all nations” (9:9).
Judah, the southern kingdom consisting of Judah and Benjamin, was promised, “I will not utterly destroy the house of Jacob” (9:8). Seventy years after Judah was taken captive by Babylon, the Jews were allowed to return to their land, and to rebuild the Temple (Ezra 1) and the city of Jerusalem (Nehemiah 2:20; 9:11-15).
Amos 9 concludes with God’s promise to one day restore God’s people to their land and place a legitimate heir on David’s throne (9:14-15).
A legitimate heir of David has not sat upon the throne of Israel since the time of the captivity. A portion of the house of Judah has returned to their homeland, but no king reigns in Israel. When a legitimate heir of Israel sits on the throne of David, He will be none other than Jesus Christ, Son of David, the Only begotten Son of God, the King of kings and Lord of lords.
Revelation 1:7-8 – “Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they also which pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him. Even so, Amen. 8 I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty.”
Copyright 2020 – Travis D. Smith