The prophet Amos is an interesting look into the Old Testament world of Israel ~750 BC. Does God have limits? You bet he does. In the first couple chapters our God piles up the sins of the nations around Israel. Then he lists of the sins of Israel’s cousins. Finally our God doesn’t mince any words when it comes to Israel herself! I think it’s kind of satisfying, frankly, to hear about how terrible deeds are given justice. That’s what those people deserve, after all!
The problem with that line of thinking is that it gives us a false sense of security. When God’s Law is presented at Star of Bethlehem, it needs to be specific or else our sinful nature will dismiss it as addressing other people. I need a personal attack on my sinful nature. This can be a challenge for the author of a Bible class or a preacher because not everyone has the same weaknesses. The danger can be that a personal attack of the Law might miss a heart secure in sin that needs to be broken down by the Spirit. (Remember the Spirit has promised to work through his Word alone. God can do what he wants, of course. But all of have to minister to souls is the Word of God.)
A great way to apply the hammer of God’s law to individuals is to ask a question. I don’t want to accuse you of wrongdoing where there is none. Better to have you apply a point of God’s Law to your own heart, be convicted, and be oh, so ready to hear the salve of the Gospel. This is how our faith is built. This is how we grow closer to our amazing God. God can even use the words of a prophet from 2750 year ago to do it! Want to hear more? Watch this week’s Bible class – the first in our new series, Minor Prophets – Major Messages: Amos.
Please click HERE for the Bible class slides.