4.1-5 the indictment. Amos begins to list the travesties of Israel. Amos uses strong language by calling them Kine (cows). The cows of Bashan were well fed and strong because of the lush vegetation of the area. This is much more than an insult in itself. The illustration is a full grown cow leading her calves. This is not just about the Israel of now, but for many years the offspring will be led into captivity. These cows have oppressed the poor and gotten fat off the reward of their mistreatment of the poor. So the prophet mocks them with his words; come to Bethel and transgress, to Gilgal and multiply transgression. He continues to mock them by saying offer a sacrifice of thanksgiving with leaven. This is an apt reference to all their sacrifices being polluted.

4.6-13 God’s defense. God is always fair. Here Amos presents his defense of God and God’s long suffering. God tried. God sent cleanness of teeth (famine), want of bread (poor crops), drought (no rain), God even selected cities to rain on and not to rain on another, but Israel just did not get the message. The voice from God the jilted lover said, yet have ye not returned unto me, saith the Lord. God then went further in trying to get through to his beloved people. God sent blasting and mildew, the worms destroyed their crops, pestilence and war, until life literally stunk in their nostrils, and still Israel never made the turn to her God. God gave a sample of the judgment to come by overthrowing some of them like Sodom and then plucking them out of danger just in the nick of time. Nothing in all of this impacted this people that God loved so much. A frustrated God now announces: prepare to meet thy God. He that formed mountains and creates the wind, the all powerful God who has loved such fallen mankind, has reached the end of His patience with a disobedient nation. With a formal declaration of His name He steps back and allows judgment to descend on Israel.

Thanks for reading today…

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