Wednesday, July 11, 2012

July 11, 2012 … All Gone? … Well, Almost All !!

Passage of the Day: Reference of Today’s Chronological Bible Study: Amos, Chapter 6-9 [NIV] To study these chapters, go to this link -

Highlight Passage: Amos 6: 1-2; 14 : [NIV] … 1 Woe to you who are complacent in Zion, and to you who feel secure on Mount Samaria, you notable men of the foremost nation, to whom the people of Israel come! 2 Go to Kalneh and look at it; go from there to great Hamath; and then go down to Gath in Philistia. Are they better off than your two kingdoms? Is their land larger than yours? … 13 … you who rejoice in the conquest of Lo Debart and say, "Did we not take Karnaim by our own strength?" 14 For the Lord God Almighty declares, "I will stir up a nation against you, Israel, that will oppress you all the way from Lebo Hamath to the valley of the Arabah." 
Highlight Passage #2: Amos 7: 8-9; 14-15 : [NIV] … 8 And the Lord asked me, "What do you see, Amos?" "A plumb line," I replied. Then the Lord said, "Look, I am setting a plumb line among my people Israel; I will spare them no longer. 9 "The high places of Isaac will be destroyed and the sanctuaries of Israel will be ruined; with my sword I will rise against the house of Jeroboam." … 14 Amos answered Amaziah [Jereboam’s priest in Israel, who was telling Amos to go back to Judah and quit prophesying], "I was neither a prophet nor the son of a prophet, but I was a shepherd, and I also took care of sycamore-fig trees.15 But the Lord took me from tending the flock and said to me, 'Go, prophesy to my people Israel.'  
Highlight Passage #3: Amos 8: 11-12 : [NIV] … 11 "The days are coming," declares the Sovereign Lord, "when I will send a famine through the land — not a famine of food or a thirst for water, but a famine of hearing the words of the Lord. 12 People will stagger from sea to sea and wander from north to east, searching for the word of the Lord, but they will not find it. 
Highlight Passage #4: Amos 9: 1; 8-10 : [NIV] … 1 I saw the Lord standing by the altar, and he said: "Strike the tops of the pillars so that the thresholds shake. Bring them down on the heads of all the people; those who are left I will kill with the sword. Not one will get away, none will escape. … 8 "Surely the eyes of the Sovereign Lord are on the sinful kingdom. I will destroy it from the face of the earth. Yet I will not totally destroy the descendants of Jacob," declares the Lord. 9 "For I will give the command, and I will shake the people of Israel among all the nations as grain is shaken in a sieve, and not a pebble will reach the ground. 10 All the sinners among my people will die by the sword, all those who say, 'Disaster will not overtake or meet us.' 

Reference Passage: Deuteronomy 28: 63-68 : [NIV] … To study this passage go to this link
Reference Passage #2: Matthew 25: 14-30 : [NIV] … To study this passage go to this link:  

My Journal for Today: Yesterday I was led again to the prophesies of Amos in the book by his name and authorship. It’s the rest of that book for me; and today, if you read through Chapters 6-9 of Amos, you will see that Amos’s prophesies to King Jeroboam II and the peoples of the northern tribes in Israel were dire for those whom Amos was declaring that Assyria would wipe them out. Well, almost all of them! Amos’ prophesies, however, do end with a positive and hopeful note (see Amos 9: 8-10), with God reminding His people that some of God’s children – a remnant, who were faithfully obedient to God’s ways from His word - would be spared.

And in this reading today, one passage jumped out at me as an indicator of what God used to judge the remnant of the descendants of Jacob who were saved; and that passage is found above in bold/red above as Amos 8: 11-12 But first note and read the first reference passage from Deut. 28, linked above, where God told the descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob that He would always watch over and save those who remained obedient to His word. And here, in the doom-ridden prophesies of Amos, we see that this prophesy, centuries before from God about his people, Israel, was being upheld.

And I believe that one of the ways that God separated those whom He would save from destruction was their loyalty and discipline to stay in, and be immersed in, His truth, i.e., His word (i.e., the Bible as we know God’s word today). And that gets me to a chronic fear which God has deeply implanted in my mind/heart. I’ve labeled it “alogosphobia,” which is a made-up word, taken from the Greek language, which means “a deep fear of being without God’s word.”

There was a time in my life, just like the peoples of Israel in Amos’ time, when I spurned the Bible and would have nothing to do with God’s truth, living selfishly and idolatrously, … just as were those people in Israel to whom Amos prophesied. But Christ came into my life about 30 years ago; and now I’m driven to be in God’s word as I am here this morning, … reading it, studying it, and doing all I can to apply it in my life. I truly believe that those who held on to God’s truth, through His word, in Amos’ day were the ones – the remnant – who were saved by God.

It’s much like Jesus taught in His PARABLE OF THE TALENTS (in Matthew 25: 14-30 linked above), where Jesus set the one servant aside who was unwilling to invest and do all he could with the “talents” God had given him to steward. And we – you and me, as disciples of Christ – are stewards of God’s talents of truth; and I believe that those who are truly Christian will “fear God” (i.e., reverence Him) enough to invest priority time to be in God’s word and to help His truth grow in us through His word. Those are the ones – the true believers in these days of darkness – who will be the ones whom God will one day say, “Well done, my good and faithful slave of My word.”

Oh, how I pray that we all have enough “alogosphobia” to drive us to be in God’s word and to maintain and declare the light of His truth, as did Amos, to a perverse and word-rejecting generation. I believe that only those who are Bible reflecting lights in these dark days will be the ones to whom Christ will one day say in glory, … “Well done … my good and faithful disciple!”

My Prayer Today: … Oh Lord, help me to be in, stay in, believe in, and live in Your word. Amen

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