Today God through Amos takes up a passionate expression of grief, He expresses sorrow with emotion over His people’s consistent and persistent decision not to turn to Him.
How frustrating must this be for our loving heavenly Father to have His people consistently and persistently turn away from Him and ignore His guidance, laws, and loving, corrective discipline.
Think how bad you feel when after warning and warning and warning your children not to do something because these are the consequences, you need to follow through on them. You do it because you love them, because you know what is best for them in a way they don’t, but you still don’t enjoy doing it…but how you wish they had just come to you and listened!
1 Hear this word that I take up over you in lamentation, O house of Israel:
2 “Fallen, no more to rise, is the virgin Israel;
forsaken on her land, with none to raise her up.”
3 For thus says the Lord GOD:
“The city that went out a thousand shall have a hundred left, and that which went out a hundred shall have ten left to the house of Israel.”
4 For thus says the LORD to the house of Israel:
“Seek me and live;
5 but do not seek Bethel, and do not enter into Gilgal or cross over to Beersheba;
for Gilgal shall surely go into exile, and Bethel shall come to nothing.”
The point then; seek God and live.
Seek God and live.
We should not not seek to give worship or do spiritual things on our own terms, in our own way…we are to do it on His terms and His way. Things that we do that we think are pleasing to the Lord that contradict His Word, His will, and His way are not actually pleasing to Him. Case in point; do not seek Bethel, and do not enter Gilgal. Places set up by man to worship when God had told them to worship elsewhere.
We are now past certain places being holier than others; God lives in us through the indwelling Holy Spirit and the church is, literally, the gathering of believers. But, what we do when there, when gathered with other believers, is important, and what we do each and every day is important;
Do we seek to love the Lord our God with all our heart, mind, soul, and strength?
Do we seek the Lord in order to live the life He wants us to?
Do we seek the Lord’s guidance and grace on a daily basis?
Do we seek to worship God because He deserves it or because it makes us feel good?
Do we seek the Lord at all?
God’s Word to us is really clear; seek the Lord and live. That is a great point to start with today…seek the Lord.
Seek His guidance, seek to glorify Him through your actions and reactions (even if you are driving, no, especially when you are driving here!).
If we combine the principles at hand in Matthew 7.7, 2 Chronicles 7.14, and Amos 4.4 we see this, a true and genuine encouragement;
If we pray, seek God, turn from our former sinful ways and seek God, we will find Him, and we will live.
What a great encouragement for us today…too good to just keep for ourselves, isn’t it…