“Surely the Sovereign Lord does nothing without revealing His plan to His servants the prophets.”
Father, You gave a special message to a shepherd, Amos. His was not in a priestly or kingly line, yet You gave him an important message for the people. He was a shepherd of Tekoa, a place about six miles south of Bethlehem, as Bethlehem is about six miles south of Jerusalem.
At the time, the people he spoke to thought they were doing well. But about thirty years later, the Assyrians took Israel into captivity. Amos voiced Your displeasure and coming judgment on a list of nations that were eventually judged.
Father, it seems to me that when You choose to bless a nation, You hold that nation responsible for its national conduct. Surely each person was not guilty of the offenses listed, but the nations were judged nonetheless.
My country has been blessed. And I believe You will hold it responsible for its national conduct. Right now, that is not looking good.
Amos questioned “Does a lion roar in the thicket when it has no prey?” Then answered: “The lion has roared – who will not fear?” He was telling people there was a real and present danger. I believe my country is being warned of a real and present danger if the people do not turn back to You.
You also revealed Your plan to John through Revelation. He wrote down Your Words to specific churches. I believe they were real churches at the time, but I also believe the same words are meant for Your church today.
In obedience to these words, would You help me remember that You are my first love; that You come before anything else in my heart. And let me act accordingly.
Like the church in Ephesus, do not let me tolerate wicked people, or listen to false teachers, or follow the Nicolaitan teachings of lustful immorality and lording church positions and power over lay people. Give me the strength to “persevere…endure hardships for Your name, and not grow weary.”
Like the churches in Smyrna and Pergamum, let me remember my wealth comes from my relationship with You. Show me where the evil one is influencing me, or my loved ones so we can reject it.
Increase our faith and our perseverance to remain true to Your Name. Do not let us be led away from Your teachings by the temptations of Balaam who tempted the Israelites into immorality and idolatry.
Father, thank You for revealing Your plan to Your servants the prophets. Let me hear and heed these words that are for my life and my country. Open my ears and my understanding. Amen