Amos 2.4-5 – Does God judge His own people?

It is so much easier for us, isn’t it, to look at people who are not believers in Jesus, those who do not profess to be Christian, and say things like,

“Just look at what she is wearing, how (insert negative adjective here).”, or,

“Can you believe what he did, I/we/you would never do that.”

It is so much easier to read of the punishment due to those who are not God’s people, as with the six formulaic judgements yesterday, than it is to read of the judgement against those who, in theory, should be doing it right.

4 Thus says the LORD:

“For three transgressions of Judah, and for four,

I will not revoke the punishment, because they have rejected the law of the LORD, and have not kept his statutes, but their lies have led them astray,

those after which their fathers walked.

5 So I will send a fire upon Judah, and it shall devour the strongholds of Jerusalem.

The same formula is used, For three transgressions of…and for four…I will not…I will send a fire…

But these are God’s people, they have the rich history to look back on, to draw hope, strength, and confidence from, these are God’s people, they have the law of the Lord and His statutes, what could go wrong?

The problem is that the law never had the power to change the hearts of sinful man. It simply never could, otherwise it would have, wouldn’t it? Just because these people had the law of the Lord, that didn’t make them righteous by default, did it.

Anyway, the point for us is this; God still judges what His people do.

We should receive with thanksgiving the finished work of Jesus on the cross into our lives as a foundational and fundamental truth, it changes everything about who we are, everything about what we do, and everything about what we think when we live in the light of this glorious truth.

We should receive this, absolutely, but that does not make us instantly fully sanctified, does it? We are a work in progress, meaning we need to keep a watchful eye on ourselves, the sinful human nature is still there.

If we love those in our church family around us, we will keep an eye out for them, too, offering accountability, counsel, and support when it is needed.

Paul encourages us to keep our focus on those in the church family rather than to be running around judging those around us who do not profess Jesus as their Lord and Saviour (1 Corinthians 5.11-13) We should be mindful that we who claim Christ as Lord will stand before Him and give account of what we have done (2 Corinthians 5.10).

All that to say, yes, God still judges His own people.

If anything, the standards are higher because of the wonderful truth you know. The Christian life is lived in community – we are individuals saved into community – so we do not have to do this alone.

Find people who will hold you accountable as you do the same for them, find people to talk with regularly about how things are going, and when it comes to standards of living, keep the focus on His people.

Revelation 19.1-5 – Hallelujah!

1 After this I heard what seemed to be the loud voice of a great multitude in heaven, crying out, “Hallelujah!

Salvation and glory and power belong to our God,

2 for his judgments are true and just;

for he has judged the great prostitute who corrupted the earth with her immorality,

and has avenged on her the blood of his servants.”

3 Once more they cried out,


The smoke from her goes up forever and ever.”

4 And the twenty-four elders and the four living creatures fell down and worshiped God who was seated on the throne, saying,

“Amen. Hallelujah!”

5 And from the throne came a voice saying,

“Praise our God,

all you his servants,

you who fear him,

small and great.”

Chapter 18 ended with the enemies of God lamenting that their commercial haven had been judged and destroyed, and now there is rejoicing in heaven. We said before that we are never to rejoice at someone else’s judgement or misfortune, the Bible also speaks to this in Obadiah 1.12.

The word Hallelujah only appears four times in the New Testament, and all in Revelation 19. Three appear in this first five verses, and it is a Hebrew word that means praise the Lord!

So here we see the voice of a great multitude in heaven crying out praise the Lord! They are not rejoicing over and praising the judgement, rather the just, holy, and righteous God who has affected it. They cry out that his judgements are true and just, then give an example by saying for he has judged the great prostitute who corrupted the earth with her immorality. The praise, then, is for the fact that salvation and glory and power belong to our God, for his judgements are true and just.

Again, then we see our examples of heavenly worship, the twenty-four elders and the four living creatures fall down and worship God who was seated on the throne. They are in agreement with the great multitude and reply with a simple Amen. Hallelujah!

The point in all this is that it is right to ascribe glory and praise and worship to our great God.

He has said He will judge the wicked and He does, He has said He will save the righteous, and He does. He is a God of His Word, His Word is true and just, as are His judgements.

If we are ever on the receiving end of some corrective, loving, Fatherly discipline, it is never a nice place to be and we certainly don’t enjoy it. But, think of the alternative; the just, right, righteous, and definitive judgement of Almighty God against a fallen world. It seems a pretty easy choice as to which we want to experience; loving corrective discipline aimed at turning hearts and minds to the Lord, or righteous judgement that leads to eternal separation.

How do we ensure we are receivers of the former not the latter?

The way, the truth, and the life.