The Prophet Amos - Part 1
The book of the prophet Amos is the third instalment of our study on the minor prophets. The book introduced very little about him. In Amos 1:1, it says that he was a shepherd from Tekoa. Many say this is a small town south of Bethlehem in the House of Judah. However there is another town of the same name near Galilee in the House of Israel in the north. We may never know the actual location but that is not important. He delivered his message when Uzziah was king of the House of Judah and Jeroboam was king of the House of Israel probably around 750 BC or as Amos said, two years before the great earthquake that is mentioned in Amos 1:1. The prophet Zechariah also wrote about this great earthquake (Zec 14:5) after two centuries of which he said will also prelude the Second Coming of the Lord.
God sent that great earthquake not just an ordinary recurring disaster but more importantly, to cement this into Israel's history and that their history will be repeated to confirm the covenant. Indeed, earthquakes prior to the Second Coming are prophesied many times in the Book of Revelation. We are experiencing great earthquakes around the world these days but these pale in comparison with the earthquakes prior to His return (Rev 16:18-19) when all cities of the world will collapse.
So the question now here is, do the Book of Amos writes about the last days?
Yes, read the verses Amos 5: 18-20 and realize that the prophet was actually prophesying about the last days, the Day of the Lord. However, his message also applied to the people of his time. His message was prior to the fall of both the houses of Israel, both the north and south kingdoms. The only difference is, his prophecies for the last days Israel culminate with the Day of the Lord, the Second Coming and then towards the Millennium as written in last five verses of the book. So Amos proclaimed the warnings to ancient Israel and they were fulfilled. His book, like all the prophecies of the other prophets is the mirror of things to come because we are simply going back to the past to confirm the covenant. Prophecies calls the peoples and places by their true names but in the modern days the places and peoples may be called by different names that only the very wise will know.
1. Prophecies against the enemies of Israel
2. Prophecies against Israel
God has so much to say against Israel. Today, the northern House of Israel is the Ten Lost Tribes or the Lost Sheep of Israel. Read also Who Are the Ten Horns of the Beast? - Part 1 and Part 2 for more details about the modern day Israel.
The passage speak of corruption, injustice, immorality and spiritual decay. Nothing is worse for God than the backsliding of His own people. In verses 9 to 11, God reminded Israel how He fought for Israel against the Amorites, leading them out of Egypt and reigned over them through the Nazirites. But all of God's work were forgotten. Their judgment is prophesied in verses 13-16. No human power can save them from the coming wrath. They will be destroyed by God through their enemies. Read Amos 3:11:15.
Despite God's warnings, Israel did not repent. So is today's Israel, the EU along with the modern day Manasseh, the U.S.A. Their beginning was they were God fearing nation. Now they are becoming less Christian. A Catholic priest warned that a predominant Catholic Europe is being swallowed up slowly by Islam. Read also the article "Islamization of Europe."
3. Other hardships of Israel prior to their downfall
Just like what the Lord Jesus said to His disciples,
So wars and famines will be the first signs. Read Amos 4:6-8--
Here, it is prophesied that soon, there will be a great famine that will hit the modern day Israel, the Ten Lost Tribes. And yet, they will never repent and return to God. When the nations breaks down because of hunger, then Israel will become an easy prey for the enemy in spite of their military superiority.
In today's age, who can ever bear the series of plagues such as water turning to blood, frogs, gnats, flies, pestilences, boils, hail, locusts and other calamities just like what happened in the old Egypt?
Finally, fire will destroy some of them like what God did to Sodom and Gomorrah. Only a few will survive, like they were snatched from the fire. However, they will not repent.
4. A warning on the coming of the Lord
During their time, Amos wrote about the first coming of Jesus. But for us, we are warned about the Second Coming, the Day of the Lord. Amos spoke of the Lord Jesus Christ both for the ancient and the future.
The Book of Amos serves as the warning for all peoples for today. It is not only for Israel and Judah but for the whole world. So many people, particularly God's own people are in the forefront trying to destroy faith and Christianity. We are getting to the times that we are more inclined to believe the lies rather than the truth. Islam is spreading. Atheism is growing. Can our modern way of life change the truth that there is God? We may change our views of things but we can not change the fact there is God and that there is an end to all our lunacy. And we must worship the true God. God have mercy on us. But behold, God's protection will abound for those who hold on to the faith. Jesus is coming soon. Repent and let us prepare ourselves to meet our God.
We will continue our study on the Book of Amos next time.
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