Read Amos 6
Woe to the Complacent
6 Woe to you who are complacent in Zion,
and to you who feel secure on Mount Samaria,
you notable men of the foremost nation,
to whom the people of Israel come!
2 Go to Kalneh and look at it;
go from there to great Hamath,
and then go down to Gath in Philistia.
Are they better off than your two kingdoms?
Is their land larger than yours?
3 You put off the day of disaster
and bring near a reign of terror.
4 You lie on beds adorned with ivory
and lounge on your couches.
You dine on choice lambs
and fattened calves.
5 You strum away on your harps like David
and improvise on musical instruments.
6 You drink wine by the bowlful
and use the finest lotions,
but you do not grieve over the ruin of Joseph.
7 Therefore you will be among the first to go into exile;
your feasting and lounging will end.
The Lord Abhors the Pride of Israel
8 The Sovereign Lord has sworn by himself—the Lord God Almighty declares:
“I abhor the pride of Jacob
and detest his fortresses;
I will deliver up the city
and everything in it.”
9 If ten people are left in one house, they too will die. 10 And if the relative who comes to carry the bodies out of the house to burn them asks anyone who might be hiding there, “Is anyone else with you?” and he says, “No,” then he will go on to say, “Hush! We must not mention the name of the Lord.”
11 For the Lord has given the command,
and he will smash the great house into pieces
and the small house into bits.
12 Do horses run on the rocky crags?
Does one plow the sea with oxen?
But you have turned justice into poison
and the fruit of righteousness into bitterness—
13 you who rejoice in the conquest of Lo Debar
and say, “Did we not take Karnaim by our own strength?”
14 For the Lord God Almighty declares,
“I will stir up a nation against you, Israel,
that will oppress you all the way
from Lebo Hamath to the valley of the Arabah.”
Amos 6 picks up where Amos 5 leaves off. This chapter is another warning to the Israelites who have grown complacent. They were indulging in the comforts of the world, just like their pagan neighbors, and they were blind to their own downfall. Here Amos is essentially saying, “To those of Israel who are lazy, selfish, undisciplined, and self-indulgent come these future woes!” The Israelites wanted to have their cake and eat it too. They wanted to live like the rest of the world and have the favor of God at the same time, but that’s not how God intended for them to live.
Charles Spurgeon, the nineteenth century British preacher, said this about their complacency (or “ease”): “A carnal ease, a fleshly security, it is not the confidence of a man who is pardoned, but the ease of a hardened wretch who has learned to despise the gibbet…It is not the calm of soul at peace with God, but the ease of a madman, who, because he has hidden his sin from his own eyes, thinks he has concealed it from God.” They weren’t living with gratitude; entitlement had set in. The Israelites weren’t seeking rest and refuge in God; they had simply drifted from His commands and into dangerous patterns of laziness, procrastination, and self-indulgence. .
Our God is surely one of rest, a God who desires to rejuvenate His people. Jesus tells us to come to Him for our rest to be satisfied (Matthew 11:28-29). God ensures rest for His people to help them avoid future disobedience (Hebrews 4:9-11). God graciously affords us insight into the beautiful rest in eternity we are to experience (Revelation 4:9-11). There is a vast dichotomy between the false rest of the gluttonous and the heavenly rest provided by our Creator within His infinite generosity and love.
Let this passage serve as a reminder to us that God loves His people, but he detests their (and our) pride. May we seek humility today and find our rest in Him
- Is your rest found in the security of your life in Jesus, or in the distraction of earthly things?
- Do you feel consistently rested? Do you set apart time for rest?
- What areas of your life have you removed God from? Where can you let him in?
“Jesus, show me how to find my rest in You. Show me Your great love and character. Make it my only security. Help me to know You better and love You more. Reveal the areas of my life that are privileged, entitled, and calloused. Tear them down and build up pillars of praise for You. This is the real satisfaction and rest that I desire. Father, you are good and faithful. Lead me into more.
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