AMOS 5:9


The Bible is speaking about God and what He does in this world, and it says in Amos 5:9, “That strengtheneth the spoiled against the strong, so that the spoiled shall come against the fortress.” The word “spoiled” here does not speak of being spoiled like we use the term for an overindulged child or adult in our culture. To spoil means to ruin or to oppress. God cares for those who are cast down. The successful and the powerful people of this world usually do not care for God because they think they got their success through their own abilities. Those who have been oppressed are more likely to turn to God because they se their need. They lost in the world’s lottery, and so their only hope is Jesus. That is why Jesus said in Matthew 5:3-5, “Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.[4] Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.[5] Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.” It says that God “strengtheneth the spoiled against the strong.” Who is the strongest, those who have the strength of man or those who have strength from God? The answer should be obvious. If the all-powerful God is there to provide all that you need, He will also provide you with the strength necessary to face you opposition. They will be weak compared to the strength that God will give you. Paul an apostle wrote in Philippians 4:13, “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.


In the next verse the Bible turns to the subject of the sins of the children of Israel. The Bible says in Amos 5:10-12, “They hate him that rebuketh in the gate, and they abhor him that speaketh uprightly.[11] Forasmuch therefore as your treading is upon the poor, and ye take from him burdens of wheat: ye have built houses of hewn stone, but ye shall not dwell in them; ye have planted pleasant vineyards, but ye shall not drink wine of them.[12] For I know your manifold transgressions and your mighty sins: they afflict the just, they take a bribe, and they turn aside the poor in the gate from their right.” When it says in verse 10 that “they abhor him that speaketh uprightly,” it shows the attitude of unbelievers to those who say the truth. They do not want to hear the truth. The do not want to hear the truth from God, and they do not want to hear the truth from those who believe in God. That is what has happened in America as people turned from God and gained power, they made decisions to reduce the teaching of God’s truth. That is the real reason from a spiritual standpoint why the Bible and prayer was removed from public schools. The concept of the separation of church and state was meant to be a barrier to the government to establish a state religion, but was not meant to be a barrier to individual teachers to teach the truth as they believe it to be. They have now also thrown out ethics and morality because spiritually they know that such good behavior is tied to the truth about God. You cannot have one without the other, so they through it all out. Why has all this happened? It has happened for the same reason that it happened in ancient Israel: “They hate him that rebuketh in the gate, and they abhor him that speaketh uprightly.


Of course, there is eventually a price to pay for turning against God. God is patient and He is merciful, but eventually the opportunities to turn to Jesus run out. God told the Israelites in Amos 5:11, “ye have built houses of hewn stone, but ye shall not dwell in them; ye have planted pleasant vineyards, but ye shall not drink wine of them.” What is wrong with building great stone houses or planting pleasant vineyards. There is nothing at all wrong with that in and of themselves, just like there is nothing necessarily wrong with any riches. But the problem can be just as it was with the Israelites in how the riches were attained. The Israelites obtained their riches on the backs of the poor. No one who works an honest day’s work should live in poverty. If someone does an honest day’s work, they should be paid an honest day’s wage. It is an evil business owner who pays his workers the least that he can. The same message is found in James 5:3-4, “Your gold and silver is cankered; and the rust of them shall be a witness against you, and shall eat your flesh as it were fire. Ye have heaped treasure together for the last days.[4] Behold, the hire of the labourers who have reaped down your fields, which is of you kept back by fraud, crieth: and the cries of them which have reaped are entered into the ears of the Lord of sabaoth.” Amos 5:12 says that they rich people “turn aside the poor in the gate from their right.” Here is one of the rights that all human beings are given from God: the right to be paid an honest wage and to not be cheated by the rich business owners.


The Bible says in Amos 5:13-15, “Therefore the prudent shall keep silence in that time; for it is an evil time.[14] Seek good, and not evil, that ye may live: and so the LORD, the God of hosts, shall be with you, as ye have spoken.[15] Hate the evil, and love the good, and establish judgment in the gate: it may be that the LORD God of hosts will be gracious unto the remnant of Joseph.” There is some very good advice given in verse 13. It says, “the prudent shall keep silence in that time.” There is a time to keep silent and to say nothing. Just because you know something does not mean that God wants you to say what you know. It says in First Thessalonians 4:11, “And that ye study to be quiet, and to do your own business, and to work with your own hands, as we commanded you.” It also says in James 1:19, “Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath.” There is a time when evil begins its march that people should speak out. Sometimes all that it takes for evil to come in and take over is for good people to do and say nothing. But once evil has taken control, and the train has left the station and is charging down the tracks, and unless it is God’s specific will for you, you are not going to stop that locomotive. As a matter of fact, once God has decided to bring judgment against a nation for all of the evil that has come into it, you are not going to stop that either. A prudent person knows when it is time to be silent. What should you do in such a time of great evil? Amos 5:14 and 15 tells us what to do. It says in verse 14, “Seek good, and not evil,” and it says in verse 15, “Hate the evil, and love the good.” You may not be able to have an effect on what everyone else is doing, but you can still control your own heart. The heart is always the most important aspect of what anyone is doing. God sees and knows the heart. God is pleased and happy to find anyone who seeks Him. You are seeking God when you love what is good and hate what is evil.


The Bible says in Amos 5:16-18, “Therefore the LORD, the God of hosts, the Lord, saith thus; Wailing shall be in all streets; and they shall say in all the highways, Alas! alas! and they shall call the husbandman to mourning, and such as are skilful of lamentation to wailing.[17] And in all vineyards shall be wailing: for I will pass through thee, saith the LORD.[18] Woe unto you that desire the day of the LORD! to what end is it for you? the day of the LORD is darkness, and not light.” First of all in these verses God is telling the Israelites once again that judgment is coming and that it is going to be bad. God tells them this because He is hoping they will take His warning and repent while there is still time. The Israelites also had a misunderstanding of the meaning of the phrase “the day of the Lord.” We know that this phrase refers to when the Lord will come. The Bible has a lot to say about the Coming of the Lord Jesus. We know about the first Coming of the Lord. He was born in Bethlehem to Mary in the linage of King David. He worked as a carpenter for many years. He had a public preaching ministry for three years. Then He died on the cross for the sins of the world and rose from the dead. But in the Old Testament most of the information about the Coming of the Lord refers to His Second Coming. Often, just like the Israelites we think about the positive aspects of the Second Coming, but God is telling the Israelites that they had better understand the full meaning of the Coming of the Lord. The first part of His Second Coming is not positive. The prophet Joel says, “the day of the LORD is darkness, and not light.” The word “darkness” is used because of the judgment that is coming. The worse day ever for most of the people on the earth will be the day that Jesus Christ comes back. The book of Revelation gives several different views of that day. It says in Revelation 19:11-21, “And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war.[12] His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself.[13] And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God.[14] And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean.[15] And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God.[16] And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.[17] And I saw an angel standing in the sun; and he cried with a loud voice, saying to all the fowls that fly in the midst of heaven, Come and gather yourselves together unto the supper of the great God;[18] That ye may eat the flesh of kings, and the flesh of captains, and the flesh of mighty men, and the flesh of horses, and of them that sit on them, and the flesh of all men, both free and bond, both small and great.[19] And I saw the beast, and the kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against him that sat on the horse, and against his army.[20] And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone.[21] And the remnant were slain with the sword of him that sat upon the horse, which sword proceeded out of his mouth: and all the fowls were filled with their flesh.” These events at the Coming of the Lord will definitely be a day of darkness for the earth, and not a day of light, just like the prophet Joel told us in His message from God.


The Bible says in Amos 5:19-27, “As if a man did flee from a lion, and a bear met him; or went into the house, and leaned his hand on the wall, and a serpent bit him.[20] Shall not the day of the LORD be darkness, and not light? even very dark, and no brightness in it?[21] I hate, I despise your feast days, and I will not smell in your solemn assemblies.[22] Though ye offer me burnt offerings and your meat offerings, I will not accept them: neither will I regard the peace offerings of your fat beasts.[23] Take thou away from me the noise of thy songs; for I will not hear the melody of thy viols.[24] But let judgment run down as waters, and righteousness as a mighty stream.[25] Have ye offered unto me sacrifices and offerings in the wilderness forty years, O house of Israel?[26] But ye have borne the tabernacle of your Moloch and Chiun your images, the star of your god, which ye made to yourselves.[27] Therefore will I cause you to go into captivity beyond Damascus, saith the LORD, whose name is The God of hosts.” We live in what is becoming a more and more secular society. The Israelites lived in a very religious society, but having a “religious” society does not guarantee that people are really serving God. They can go through the rituals and enforce the rules but still be distant from God and be serving themselves and their own will. God wants the heart. Believing in Jesus involves the heart. The true worship of God is not a religion, but is a relationship with Christ. Of all the sins that the Israelites were committing, and there were many, God was most disturbed by their false worship. That is why God said in Amos 5:27, “Therefore…” Because of the false religious beliefs, the judgment came. Be careful what you believe and be careful what you accept as your doctrines about the one true God. If you are wrong, you will be in the same place as the Israelites were 2700 years ago. Turn to the Truth while there is time. Jesus is the Truth.       



Copyright; 2014 by Charles F. (Rick) Creech
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