Saturday, September 14, 2019

Amos 7

Today's reading in our daily plan is Amos 7. Take a moment to pray, asking God to speak to you from this passage. Then read, using the following notes and questions to help you get everything out of the passage.

SAY WHAT? (What is the passage saying?)
  • This chapter begins with an interaction between God and Amos.
  • God tells Amos that he is going to torture Israel with locusts. Amos begs him not to, and God honors Amos' request.
  • Then God tells Amos that he is going to torment Israel by causing massive fires. Amos begs him not to, and God relents.
  • God uses the metaphor of a plumb line to tell Amos that he is going to judge Israel by his standards, not their own.
    • A plumb line is a tool used by carpenters and farmers to make sure their vertical cuts or digs are straight. The idea is that the plumb line does not change based on the whims of the person using it, in the same way that God sets the standard for the way of life the Israelites should follow.
  • A priest catches wind of Amos' prophecies, or messages from God, and warns the king of Israel that Amos is plotting against him. Instead of taking his messages as warnings from God, he thinks Amos is a guy with a vendetta against Israel.
  • The priest tells Amos to leave town, but Amos refuses. Instead, he responds by warning the priest and giving him even more warnings from God. 
SO WHAT? (What are the underlying principles?)
  • In his defense against the priest's commands, Amos says in verse 14 that, "I am not a professional prophet." He was just a shepherd that was doing what God told him to.
  • When we see an opportunity to share our faith with someone else, or hear about a situation where we could show God's love, it's easy to get intimidated and think that it should be left to someone who is a "professional," like a pastor or someone who knows more of the Bible.
  • Like Amos, we can all share our spiritual journey with others and invite them to check out God
NOW WHAT? (How will you personally apply this passage?)

  • Who in your life could you share your faith with this week? Is there a coworker going through a difficult time, or a friend you've known for a while?
  • It could be as simple as saying, "Hey, I go to this church that is different. It's fun and cool, and I think you'd like it. Would you be up for checking it out with me this weekend?" You'll be surprised how favorabily people respond, and how much God can use that conversation to change their life.