Bible Topics In The Christian Library
The Rebuke of a Shepherd Sent by God!

Thesis:                         Obedience to the Shepherd.
Song of Invitation:       #  721;  Will Jesus Find Us Watching


I.       From shepherd to reformer, back to shepherd, Amos was God's temporary tool.
       A.       From herding sheep to dressing sycomore-trees, he was      [7: 14-15]
                  "to bear" the burden of telling Israel of it apostacy. 
       B.       God calls who He wishes to rebuke corrupt Israel.

II.       He was aware of Israel's corruption.                                              [3: 9-10]
       A.       Every level of society was corrupt.
              1.       Amos cried out against Bethel's corruption and the nations
                        inevitable doom.
              2.       As a consequence, the poor had to suffer.
       B.       He was not smooth and eloquent like the politician and city dweller.
       C.       He doled out cold, hard justice and righteousness.                             [3: 8]

III.       Amos had little sympathy for the pretentious lifestyles 
            he would find among his northern brothers.
       A.       He could view the decadent attitudes more objectively.
       B.       He vividly illustrates the consequences of Israel's folly.
              1.       Israel's demise is liken to a lamb being devoured by a lion.          [3: 12]
                    i.       Only two of the lambs legs and a piece of its ear are visible.
                   ii.       Likewise, the Samaritans are to be consumed for their folly.
              2.       God's judgment is swift.


I.       The sins of the ruling class will find out about God's swift judgment.            [3: 9-15]
       A.       The luxury-loving wealthy rulers.                                                             [6: 1-6]
              1.      Their trust was in "ease" and "Mount Samaria."                             [6: 1]
              2.      If only they had been wise enough to look at the surrounding            [6:2]
                       kingdoms, they would have seen that their kingdom was not
                       as great as they had convinced themselves.
       B.       Their foolish trust in power.                                                                 [6: 12-14]
              1.      Power, like time, is fleeting.
              2.      The Pharisees had no problem with Jesus' teachings, 
                       as long as they did not affect their comfort and influence of power.
              3.       The status quo was what the Pharisees lusted after.
                     i.       Whether in political or spiritual matters.                          [Lk 18: 9-14]
                     ii.       As long as they could stay in control.
       C.       The wealthys' oppression of the poor is heard.                                    [3: 9]
              1.       God is all knowing.                                                                     [Mt 10: 30]
              2.       God remembered the suffering of Lazarus.                         [Lk 16: 19-31]
              3.       What have I done about the suffering about me?
                     i.       Did I help materially?
                     ii.       Did I help with my time, effort, and expertice?

II.       The luxury-loving women: a special judgment against them.                         [4: 1-3]
       A.       The women/cows "oppressed" the poor and "crushed" the needy.
              1.       They did this so that they could live as they did.
              2.       How do we "step" on others to get better things in life?
                     i.       Do I pay taxes on "everything?"
                     ii.      Do I shove my work onto somebody else?
                     iii.     Do I get so caught-up in myself, that I forget about God?

III.       Condemnation of their religious festivities -- "which please you," not Jehovah.
                                                                                                                                     [4: 4-5]
       A.       Amos ironically describes Israel's false worship.
       B.       Bethel and Gilgal are headquarters for idolatry.
       C.       Their cult required sacrifices every morning and tithes every third day.
              1.       There was a lot of "religion" in the land.
              2.       There was not much "true" worship with piety and devotion.
                     i.       They offered leaven, not the priests.                              [Lev 7: 13-14]
                     ii.      This was against the law.                                            [Lev 2: 11, 7: 11]
                     iii.     They were forced to give "freewillingly."
       D.       God saw a self-willed worship, not what was given.                          [Mt 9: 13]
              1.       Israel wanted to worship "their way."
              2.       How do I wish to worship God?
              3.       What is my attitude as I come for Sunday worship?
              4.       Is my attitude toward God an obedient one?

IV.       Their heartless worship will not avert the day.                                        [5: 21-24]
       A.       God is very merciful, but even he has a limit to his patience.
       B.       God wants works that please Him, not man.
       C.       Our goal should be to please Him by doing His will.

V.       They have followed the steps of their fathers.                                          [5: 25-27]
       A.       Just as their fathers had foolishly worshipped idols, they too followed after
       B.       How is our worship any different than theirs?
       C.       Is our worship pleasing to God?


I.       The northern kingdom is rebuked harshly by Amos.
       A.       They did not care about their future.
       B.       They were not concerned for the suffering people within their own kingdom.

II.       What made things worse was their "merriness" when things were falling
            apart around them.
       A.       They had used up all of God's mercy.                                                       [7: 9]
       B.       Testing God's patience is not our lot in life.

III.       Those who do what is righteous will be rewarded.                                    [9: 13-15]
       A.       But we must be watching!
       B.       Blessings well come to God's people, but we must be
                  as obedient as sheep and as patient as shepherds -- like Amos.

I.  A disciple of Jesus Christ's is:
       A.  A faithful servant unto death.                                                                  [Rev 2: 10]
             1.  Just as Jesus Christ is faithful, 
              2. But not before I have proven my obedience through baptism.

       B.  Baptized for my sins.                                                   [Mk 16: 15-6, Acts 10: 47-8]
              1.  Just as Jesus Christ was baptized as an example to me, 
              2.  But not before I have confessed who my Lord is.

       C.  Confessing Jesus Christ as Lord.                                   [Mt 10: 32, Rom 10: 8-13]
             1.  Just as Jesus Christ confessed His Father as perfect, 
             2.  But not before I have repented of past sins.

       D.  Repenting of past sins.                                                                        [Acts 17: 30]
              1.  Just as Jesus Christ taught the woman at the well to sin no more,
              2.  But not before I have believed in God and His Word.

       E  Believing in God and His Word.                                             [Jn 8: 24, Acts 16: 31]
              1.  Jesus Christ said that if we had the faith of a mustard seed             [Lk 17: 6]
              2.  But not before I have become a student of God's Word.

       F.  Hearing/studying His Word                                                           [Jn 6: 44-5; 8: 32]
              1.  We need to study to be approved,                                             [2 Tim 3: 15-7]
              2.  Because nothing else matters!

Copyright 1999 by Neil C. Prokop may be reproducted for non-commercial purposes at no cost to others.

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