Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Wednesday - Amos 9 - Destruction & Grace

HERE is a great destruction that is planned for Israel. Yet, in contrast, God will also pour out great grace upon Israel (Amos 9:11-15).  So, which one is it, destruction or grace? The answer is, both. Amos was forecasting a time of great misery for the Jews, followed by a time of incomparable peace.

When God decides to execute justice, there is absolutely no way to hide from His hand. As Amos 9:2-3 teaches plainly, not only is God omnipresent, but He demonstrates His omnipresence with incredible clarity when He starts judging rebels. He always sees us, and He can always reach us (Amos 9:8).

One of the most marvelous things about God's wrath is the precision of it. There are never accidental consequences of His anger. There is no collateral damage. As Amos 9:9 points out, not one grain of wheat is lost, yet every worthless piece of chaff is burned. Even in the Bible stories where it seems that some of the characters are simply smashed in the story of the main character, without regard to their own story, we can be sure that God had their interest in His heart as well. We don't have the tale of what God was doing in the lives of Job's children when they all died as a result of the testing of Job’s faith, but we can be sure that if we only had their story and not the record of God's interactions with their father, the narrative would make just as much sense. God does work on a macroeconomic scale, yet even in that, He is always dealing with every single individual as if his or her life story was the only one being told. Every sinner pays his debt eventually (Amos 9:10), and every faithful servant is rewarded eventually. God never says oops.

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