As I’ve studied the fourth chapter of Amos, The Spirit has really impressed on me the depth of God’s Word. It isn’t merely one dimensional, with one meaning, for one time. It is timeless, and goes beyond the physical, encompassing the spiritual, and probably much more than I have learned to this point.
God Himself is multidimensional, and very difficult for our limited minds to comprehend. Difficult, but not impossible. In fact this is His desire, that we know Him in His fullness. It is why He created us. It is why He sent His Son to restore our ability to do so. And it is why He sent His Spirit to lead us to the truth of who He is.
“However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth.” John 16:13
Praise His Holy Name!
This next part of Amos 4 goes into detail about how God tried to get Israel’s attention and warn them to turn back. Like I’ve said before, our Father takes no pleasure in punishment. It’s His desire that we come to the realization of our error through His warnings, and submit to Him with a humble and contrite spirit. Unfortunately for humans, in our sinful state, that is something that doesn’t come naturally. It must be learned.
The spirit of pride is Christianity’s worst enemy. It’s no coincidence that God warns us of this in three verses in His word.
“Therefore He says: ‘God resists the proud, But gives grace to the humble.'” James 4:6
Both James and Peter, in 1 Peter 5:5, quote this from Proverbs 3:34. With that in mind, let us take a look at the warnings God gives His people. Warnings that should bring all believers to their knees in repentance.
“‘Also I gave you cleanness of teeth in all your cities, And lack of bread in all your places; Yet you have not returned to Me,’ Says the Lord.”
I want to draw your attention to the first two words, here. “Also I.” So many Christians love to cry, “We are under the attack of the enemy!” How many stop and think maybe God is trying to tell us something? Here, God leaves no doubt about the actions He takes to get His people to humble themselves before Him.
Now, some of us can see the reality of a literal famine in our nation. Do you know anyone with a food allergy? Do the terms GMO, MSG, hybridized, or partially hydrogenated anything, sound familiar? Scientists have altered our food supply to the point where it is indigestible to many people. Food doesn’t have to go away for people to die of malnutrition. As farfetched as it sounded in “The Trouble with Tribbles,” in the TV series, Star Trek, it’s now very possible to have plenty of food, and yet starve to death! Not to mention the diseases altered foods can cause.
But The Spirit is showing me another famine in the land. The famine of The Word of God. The United States is the most Christian nation in the world, The Word of God is readily available, here, yet the truth of the Gospel is seldom preached.
“My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge. Because you have rejected knowledge, I also will reject you from being priest for Me; Because you have forgotten the law of your God, I also will forget your children.” Hosea 4:6
We are in desperate need of prayer warriors to cry out to The Lord to send down manna from heaven! But it will take more than that.
“‘I also withheld rain from you,
When there were still three months to the harvest.
I made it rain on one city,
I withheld rain from another city.
One part was rained upon,
And where it did not rain the part withered.
“‘So two or three cities wandered to another city to drink water,
But they were not satisfied;
Yet you have not returned to Me,’
Says the Lord.”
When I read this I immediately thought of the Holy Spirit and the “latter rain.” The latter rain comes in the spring. It causes crops to grow and mature. It prepares them for the harvest.
It is The Holy Spirit who reveals the truth of God’s Word to us, convicting us when we go astray, comforting us in our holy grief, and restoring unity with our Father. If The Holy Spirit is withheld, we have no hope of maturing in Christ and taking part in the harvest.
We see and hear about The Holy Spirit coming in power and glory in various parts of the world today, and some people run after Him. I myself went to Montana this summer, seeking Him. But what we need is for Him to come and indwell us fully and permanently where we are! We need to be walking in His glory 24/7, that others might see Him and know His power and love!
Children of God, pray, pray, pray, for the outpouring of The Holy Spirit on this dry and thirsty land! How we need His Holy Rain!
“And Jesus said to them, ‘I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst.'” John 6:35
We’ll learn more about the state of God’s Garden (the Church) next time.
Until then, God’s grace and peace be yours,