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    The God of yesteryears is the same God today

    peace

    By Sandy Shaw

    Do many people see what is happening globally in these days? Are many aware of what is going on around our troubled world?

    A man who can see clearly is invaluable at such times.

    Amos was a man of God who saw clearly and who spoke courageously but very few people actually paid attention and listened.

    Amos had insight. Amos could see. Amos had discernment and was told by God to share what he knew. His short book is so relevant to these present days as we observe what is going in America and across Europe and throughout the Middle East. It is bad in other parts of the world too.

    Amos could hear and see and speak.

    His praying affected God and his preaching angered men.

    Amos saw locusts coming and he actually asked, “How could You do that, O God?

    Yes, you can affect God by your praying.

    Amos angered the religious elite, these religious leaders. Prophets speak against the status quo.

    Amos was a farmer who worked with animals and observed nature and was familiar with the environment. He tells us how God took him for this very special and demanding task.

    Amos was taken away from his familiar surroundings, as were Abraham and David and Peter and Paul.

    His ancient words are vividly alive. He could see and hear and speak with insight boldness and courage.

    Night was falling upon the people of God and Amos was a light – a light which was rejected – as were the lights of his colleagues, Hosea, Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Micah, who all denounced the ongoing abuses in society, and who were met with deaf ears.

    Amos presents himself at Bethel and Samaria as a witness of God and God’s prophetic man just as Jesus Christ, the Son of God, presented Himself as Savior and Lord and King.

    God needs people who can see and hear and Jesus Christ can empower a man with grace and love, as well as the Holy Spirit imparting insight and wisdom

    Amos sees a vision of a basket of fruit and we read of this in Chapter 8 of his book. Do take time and make time to read this amazingly wonderful book of Amos. If you are to any degree spiritual you will want to read it. It is good to devour God’s holy Word.

    Amos is a highly relevant book and worthy of serious reading and study regarding what is happening in America and Europe.

    There is a basket of ripe fruit on the verge of going bad. It is on the point of rotting.

    The people were ripe for rottenness.

    Amos saw God as a lion and lions came up from the Jordan at that time for lambs.

    The shepherd only rescues an ear and a couple of legs, and that statement has profound significance as it flows from the Pentateuch.

    Amos is a series of separate sermons and messages and prophecies, and Amos sows and plants these in people.

    His poetry is a dirge. It is heavy in places. He repeats, “Yet you did not return to ME”, seven times.

    Amos speaks about the inhumanity of Israel’s neighbors – Damascus, cruelty – Gaza, brutality – Tyre, treachery – Edom, ruthlessness – Ammon, barbarity – Moab, sacrilege.

    Amos speaks about the infidelity of Israel’s sister, Judah, rejecting the laws of God and accepting the lies of men.

    Amos speaks about the insensitivity of Israel’s children. Israel was exploiting the poor among men, and indulging the flesh before God.

    They were past redemption which meant future retribution and judgment.

    Amos speaks about ‘woe’ which is a word to attract people’s much needed attention, and he has a sermon all about seek.

    There are passages where it is as though the sun breaks through, and only sinners will disappear, and there will be a remnant and Gentiles will come in. Imagine this Jewish prophet being as bold as that at that time.

    God will not totally destroy. There will be a little remnant.

    James quotes this in Acts Chapter 15. It all came painfully true and the half brother of Jesus Christ quotes Amos as being authoritative and authentic.

    I will plant Israel, never again to be uprooted.

    Amos appears on the scene some sixty years after Elisha who succeeded the prophetic ministry of Elisha. There is a new situation facing the people of God quite suddenly just as there are new challenging situations facing our world today, and we need to hear what God’s prophets are saying.

    Pagan practices were mixed with prosperity and compromised spirituality.

    There were many services but these services did not affect positively the morals and morality and ethics of the people. Do you think that happens frequently today?

    Jesus Christ, the Son of God, can deal with that issue when it arises today.

    Jesus deal with the sin issue and that is an issue we can be reluctant to mention.

    Reading the book of Amos gives one encouragement because what God has done in the past that same living loving God can do again!

    Sandy Shaw is Pastor of Nairn Christian Fellowship, Chaplain at Inverness Prison, and Nairn Academy, and serves on The Children’s Panel in Scotland, and has travelled extensively over these past years teaching, speaking, in America, Canada, South Africa, Australia, making 12 visits to Israel conducting Tours and Pilgrimages, and most recently in Uganda and Kenya, ministering at Pastors and Leaders Seminars, in the poor areas surrounding Kampala, Nairobi, Mombasa and Kisumu.

    He broadcasts regularly on WSHO radio out of New Orleans, and writes a weekly commentary at http://www.studylight.org entitled “Word from Scotland” on various biblical themes, as well as a weekly newspaper column.

     

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