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Default Day 266. Amos 1-3 - 01-26-2011, 08:02 PM

Amos 1-3

Amos 1

1 The words of Amos, who was among the herdmen of Tekoa, which he saw concerning Israel in the days of Uzziah king of Judah, and in the days of Jeroboam the son of Joash king of Israel, two years before the earthquake.

Amos began his prophetic career in 750 BC. He was from the south, but did most (if not all) of his prophesying against the north. Amos was a wealthy sheep herder and sycamore fig farmer. Like most everyone who wrote a book in the old testament, he was wealthy. There are very few examples of anyone who was actually poor who did anything important. About the only example I can think of, of someone who might have been poor, was Samuel.

At this point, you should re-read day 202, Isaiah 4-6.

Have you finished yet? I'll wait.

2 And he said, The LORD will roar from Zion, and utter his voice from Jerusalem; and the habitations of the shepherds shall mourn, and the top of Carmel shall wither.

God's going to do some judging.

3 Thus saith the LORD; For three transgressions of Damascus, and for four, I will not turn away the punishment thereof; because they have threshed Gilead with threshing instruments of iron:

4 But I will send a fire into the house of Hazael, which shall devour the palaces of Benhadad.


What does this mean? "For three transgressions and for four"?

That's how many times you can do something before God will stop forgiving you. You can break his rules three times, but the fourth, you are going to get punished. It is slightly confusing language (and is echoed in all the other "versions" of the Bible). It means you can do something three times, and then on the fourth, that's when you are screwed.

God forgives, but he knows when you don't mean it anymore. Three times can be an accident, the fourth time, well, you are doing it on purpose now. It's that word I love so much, INIQUITY. If you do something four times, you love doing that thing. Iniquity is the love of the sin. Four times is definitely loving what you did.

First Amos professes against Damascus. Second is against Gaza, third is Tyrus, fourth is Edom, fifth is Ammon.

Amos 2

New nations to be prophesied against.

First Moab...

4 Thus saith the LORD; For three transgressions of Judah, and for four, I will not turn away the punishment thereof; because they have despised the law of the LORD, and have not kept his commandments, and their lies caused them to err, after the which their fathers have walked:

Judah? Really, first God was going to just do all those other nations, and now he's going to target Judah.

And for four, i will not turn away the punishment. You might read that easier as "on the fourth I will punish".

5 But I will send a fire upon Judah, and it shall devour the palaces of Jerusalem.

It is believed that Amos did all of his prophesying on one day. It probably started out all nice, with people gathered around listening to this wealthy farmer talking about God punishing all these other nations that they hated. And then all of a sudden, he mentions them. This caused some shock. He can't talk about us like that... but Amos continued.

6 Thus saith the LORD; For three transgressions of Israel, and for four, I will not turn away the punishment thereof; because they sold the righteous for silver, and the poor for a pair of shoes;


Now he's talking about Israel, the north! This is our land. He can't talk about us like that!

11 And I raised up of your sons for prophets, and of your young men for Nazarites. Is it not even thus, O ye children of Israel? saith the LORD.

God wanted his people to be the best, he let them prophesy, he allowed them to be Nazarites... I sense a "but"...


12 But ye gave the Nazarites wine to drink; and commanded the prophets, saying, Prophesy not.


Samson is the one Nazarite who was allowed to break the rules.

The other prophets were told "don't say bad things", "the people don't like to hear bad things". Most prophecy isn't happy in nature.

13 Behold, I am pressed under you, as a cart is pressed that is full of sheaves.

God is full, and he can't take anymore. He's either got to get rid of some of his burden, or get a bigger cart. God is happy with his cart, and he's not going to make two trips.

Amos 3

1 Hear this word that the LORD hath spoken against you, O children of Israel, against the whole family which I brought up from the land of Egypt, saying,

2 You only have I known of all the families of the earth: therefore I will punish you for all your iniquities.


There's that word, iniquity. The fourth time, that's iniquity.

5 Can a bird fall in a snare upon the earth, where no gin is for him? shall one take up a snare from the earth, and have taken nothing at all?

Gin is not the alcoholic beverage made by distilling things with juniper berries, a gin is a trap for game.

11 Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD; An adversary there shall be even round about the land; and he shall bring down thy strength from thee, and thy palaces shall be spoiled.

God promises someone will come and ruin Israel. (The south is sort of spared from Amos' prophecy).

14 That in the day that I shall visit the transgressions of Israel upon him I will also visit the altars of Bethel: and the horns of the altar shall be cut off, and fall to the ground.

Bethel was the place where Jeroboam set up his bad temples. God was sort of mad at Bethel.

So, what have we learned today?

1. God will forgive only 3 times, after that, he knows you don't mean it when you ask for forgiveness.

2. Imagine how you'd feel if someone came up to you and started saying that the US was going to be destroyed because the US had transgressed the LORD. Some of the things those people might say are that "God hates fags", and "thank God for dead soldiers".

3. God needs a bigger cart.

YIC
V


Judges 9:21 And Jotham ran away, and fled, and went to Beer, and dwelt there, for fear of Abimelech his brother.
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