The word for this week is: “Life”.
The thought for this week is: God is the Lord of Life.
What is it you cannot live without? What if God asked you to give it up? Would you be able to? Whatever it is, maybe you should consider how tight a hold it actually has on you because it might be something that is counterproductive and quite possibly dangerous. If there is something in your life that keeps you from trusting and honoring God, then it is an idol and God is not going to allow you to keep it in your grasp. Eventually we will lose those things that we try to hold on to most tightly.
Amos was a shepherd and farmer in Judah who warned Israel about God’s coming judgment. King Jeroboam II had expanded Israel’s territory and wealth. Eventually, their prosperity corrupted the people and they became even more immoral and idolatrous. Read Read Amos 2:6-8. How were the Israelites displeasing God? Now Read Amos 6:1-8. Note what it is the Israelites were trusting in. What attitude were the people of Israel exhibiting (4-5). What did God hate about Israel’s behavior and what was his punishment?
The Israelites were so enamored with their prosperity that they forgot God. They became prideful in their affluence and believed they did not need him anymore. When God called them to repentance, they refused to obey his commands or let him back into their lives. They just were not willing to give up their wealth for him and it ended up costing them everything. Israel’s capital of Samaria was destroyed in 722 B.C. by the Assyrians. Thousands of them were taken captive and the rest were made to live under Assyrian rule. The nation of Israel ceased to exist.
Many times God sent his prophets to Israel and Judah before sending his judgment. God wants us to know what is going on and what his plan is for us. However, no matter what the circumstances may be, our most important responsibility is always to trust and obey him. If there is anything we are honoring above God, he will let us know that it displeases him and he will ultimately call us to lay that thing down. Therefore, it is not the things that he is taking away, rather it is what he is giving us and that is eternal Life. Meditate and pray through the following scripture: “No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.” (Mat. 6:24)
Prayer: Our Father in heaven, we thank you for the blessings of life. You have called us to put away those things that separate us from you. Give us the strength to trust and obey you that we might live life abundantly. We thank you for the forgiveness of sin that comes only through the blood of your son. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
By Rory Barneche