“Ah, you that turn justice to wormwood, and bring righteousness to the ground!” vs. 7
Amos, a shepherd from Judea, had heard a call from the Lord to go to Israel (the Northern Kingdom) during their golden years. He came first to observe, and he was not impressed. The nation was experiencing unprecedented prosperity and the wealthy were rolling in cash–many were having to use their imaginations to figure out how to spend it all. Building programs were going on everywhere–some of the rich had both summer and winter homes! But Amos looked behind the facade and was appalled. Leaders had perverted justice and twisted it for their own benefit! Religious leaders were as corrupt as they come! They paid lip service to the Lord but their hearts were caught up in multiple idolatries, even paying homage to foreign gods. So Amos warned them in the most forceful ways that he could, saying that the Lord just wasn’t going to put up with their wanton disregard for justice and their exploitation of the poor. They were going to be overrun by foreign nations and their cities would be destroyed–their legacy was going to be wiped from the face of the earth. There’s no record that anyone paid the least bit of attention to what Amos said–the religious leaders told him to go back home and prophesy there. We know what that’s like. Nations who think they are great still don’t listen to critics–and may discover too late that God is not mocked!
Thought for the Day: What really makes a nation great?