PATHS In Bible Chapters

Amos 4
Theme: The Unavoidable God
Key Text: Verse 12


            The nation of Israel was guilty of neglecting and avoiding Jehovah. They had taken His great affection for them lightly, and blindly given their allegiance to false gods. They had acted like He was not even there. However, not only was He there, He was the God with whom they must reckon. His denunciations of their sins are repeated, and seem to culminate in the phrase, “Prepare to meet thy God, O Israel” (4:12). In other words, “Judgment is coming; you just might as well expect it!” There is a lesson for our forgetful hearts, too! Our God is too high to get over, too low to get under, too wide to get around, or to get by!


1. His Unavoidable Holiness

            The first five verses of the chapter remind us that God is so holy, He cannot allow sin to go unrewarded. Even the women, or the “kine of Bashan” (4:1), are sternly rebuked for their unjust and unbridled lifestyles. This holy One is also revealed as a swearing God, swearing “by His holiness” (4:2) to judge the people. As fish are jerked out of their habitat by painful hooks, the prophet declares to Israel, “He will take you away with hooks, and your posterity with fishhooks” (4:2). In the light of divine holiness, their worship is also viewed as mockery, a scene in which they “transgress” and “multiply transgression” (4:4).


2. His Unavoidable Heart

            The Bible is a revelation of the heart of God. But, in this scene, we seem to almost hear His heartbeat! He loves His people so much He admits He went to extremes to get their attention. He had sent famine, or “want of bread” (4:6) to all their cities; He had “withholden the rain” (4:7); He had sent “pestilence after the manner of Egypt” (4:10); He had sent war and destruction, and He had providentially cared for them through it all (see 4:10, 11). All He wanted was their affectionate response to Him. But, with a broken heart, over and over again, He has to say, “Yet have ye not returned unto Me, saith the Lord” (4:6, 8, 9, 10, 11).


3. His Unavoidable Honor

            The chapter concludes with another promise of judgment. “Therefore thus will I do unto thee, O Israel: and because I will do this unto thee, prepare to meet thy God, O Israel” (4:12). His holiness is at stake; His heart is heavy; and His honor is on the line. He’s not just another god! He’s the One “that formeth the mountains and createth the wind.” He's the One that “maketh the morning darkness, and treadeth upon the high places of the earth” (4:13). He has a good name, a reputable name in heaven and earth. "The Lord, The God of hosts, is His name" (4:13). And, for His name's sake, judgment cannot be avoided!



            Do you listen to or watch the daily weather reports? Often, the weathermen give excellent forecasts, and we can plan our day, or week accordingly. Sometimes, however, overnight changes in the atmospheric conditions can make their predictions invalid and untrustworthy. Unlike our weathermen, when the Lord predicts a storm of judgment, we might as well get ready. The storm is coming! Also, His storms never go off course. They always hit the shore at the right place, and  accomplish the purpose for which they were sent. He’s “The Unavoidable God!”