Amos Part 7 – The Beginning of Sorrows

“The Beginning of Sorrows”

Key Verses:  Amos 2:4 – 2:10

The first six transgressions we reviewed in Amos were made against the heathen Gentile nations that surround Israel. Our day of the Lord and corresponding redemption is drawing nigh as we mature in understanding by our judgment. The time is at hand when we begin to see these things looking behind ourselves. Amos takes a turn this week when the judgments of the Lord are now spoken against Judah and Israel.

Luk 21:20  And when ye shall see Jerusalem compassed with armies, then know that the desolation thereof is nigh.

Luk 21:23 But woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck, in those days! for there shall be great distress in the land, and wrath upon this people.

We live through a time of spiritual immaturity, hearing but not doing the Word and being full of knowledge yet lacking in good works and the fruit of righteousness (Gal 5:22). The Lord’s people are blessed by being the first to keep the Lord’s judgments and do them because that is what brings salvation by the remaking of the marred vessel of clay (Jer 18:4, Rev 21:5).

Eze 36:27 And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them.

Rev 22:7 Behold, I come quickly: blessed is he that keepeth the sayings of the prophecy of this book.

It is these “judgment” experiences that will increase our faith and teach us righteousness right on the Lord’s schedule (1Co 10:13, Joh 16:12). We move beyond the milk and honey and begin to eat strong meat as we are given to bear the affliction and suffering becoming a living sacrifice.

Amo 2:4 Thus saith the LORD; For three transgressions of Judah, and for four, I will not turn away the punishment thereof; because they have despised the law of the LORD, and have not kept his commandments, and their lies caused them to err, after the which their fathers have walked:

Amo 2:5 But I will send a fire upon Judah, and it shall devour the palaces of Jerusalem.

Amo 2:6 Thus saith the LORD; For three transgressions of Israel, and for four, I will not turn away the punishment thereof; because they sold the righteous for silver, and the poor for a pair of shoes;

Amo 2:7 That pant after the dust of the earth on the head of the poor, and turn aside the way of the meek: and a man and his father will go in unto the same maid, to profane my holy name:

Amo 2:8 And they lay themselves down upon clothes laid to pledge by every altar, and they drink the wine of the condemned in the house of their god.

Amo 2:9 Yet destroyed I the Amorite before them, whose height was like the height of the cedars, and he was strong as the oaks; yet I destroyed his fruit from above, and his roots from beneath.

Amo 2:10 Also I brought you up from the land of Egypt, and led you forty years through the wilderness, to possess the land of the Amorite.

Amos’s prophecy and all the words of Scripture describe our total (two) witness for Jesus Christ who is both the first man Adam and the Lord from heaven (1Co 15:47).

Amo 1:1 The words of Amos, who was among the herdmen of Tekoa, which he saw concerning Israel in the days of Uzziah king of Judah, and in the days of Jeroboam the son of Joash king of Israel, two years before the earthquake.

When Jesus Christ brings the war to our heavens (Rev 12:7) the process and journey towards salvation begins that will occupy the remainder of our life in physical bodies. It is through many tribulations we ARE ENTERING into the kingdom of God (Act 14:22). We must wait for the appearing of the Lord within and without ourselves. Even after abiding through the judgment of the heathen nations within, it is only the beginning of the race for eternal life.

Mat 24:6 And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet.

Mat 24:7 For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places.

Mat 24:8 All these are the beginning of sorrows.

Mat 24:9 Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name’s sake.

Learning obedience by the things we suffer (Heb 5:8) require us to fall down seven times (Pro 24:16) and bear the scourging and chastening that the true grace of God brings to all men in the appointed times (Heb 12:6). We bring the sins and fornication of the world into the Body of Christ with us and that is why we will spend the rest of our days in these clay vessels being taught and prepared for service in our day of the Lord.

Joh 15:2 Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit.

2Sa 12:10 Now therefore the sword shall never depart from thine house; because thou hast despised me, and hast taken the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be thy wife.

The rest of the Book of Amos will be the judgment of Israel and will reveal some details on what we can expect in running this marathon all the way to the end.

Amo 2:4 Thus saith the LORD; For three transgressions of Judah, and for four, I will not turn away the punishment thereof; because they have despised the law of the LORD, and have not kept his commandments, and their lies caused them to err, after the which their fathers have walked:

Amo 2:5 But I will send a fire upon Judah, and it shall devour the palaces of Jerusalem.

The old man and carnal mind loves the things of this world and despises the law of the Lord.

Luk 16:13 No servant can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.

Pro 13:13 Whoso despiseth the word shall be destroyed: but he that feareth the commandment shall be rewarded.

Living by every word the Lord spoke includes walking first as our spiritual fathers did and what all carnally minded men do. Like our forefathers before us and the parable of the sons reveals (Mat 21:28-30), we say we will obey the Lord and His law but do not do it.

Exo 19:8 And all the people answered together, and said, All that the LORD hath spoken we will do. And Moses returned the words of the people unto the LORD.

Receiving of the law and the oracles of God is knowledge but until the earthquake comes that brings salvation, this knowledge will puff us up and turn us into self-righteous religious beasts (Rev 13:11). We have yet to see our nakedness and will need to see ourselves as a harlot and publican, the very chief of sinners…. the abomination causing desolation (Mat 24:15) and have this self-righteousness exposed by judgment. It is the one who said he would not go work in His Father’s fields but later repented who enters in first.

Mat 21:31 Whether of them twain did the will of his father? They say unto him, The first. Jesus saith unto them, Verily I say unto you, That the publicans and the harlots go into the kingdom of God before you.

The second part of Judah’s transgression is causing others to err from the way. The fire of the Lord is the word that is showing us our hypocrisy and mixing the wine and fornicating with the spiritual harlot and her 200 million lies (Rev 9:16).

Hos 4:11 Whoredom and wine and new wine take away the heart.

Hos 4:12 My people ask counsel at their stocks, and their staff declareth unto them: for the spirit of whoredoms hath caused them to err, and they have gone a whoring from under their God.

1Jn 2:21 I have not written unto you because ye know not the truth, but because ye know it, and that no lie is of the truth. 

We learn just how little a “little leaven” is at the same time we learn just how few the “few chosen” (Mat 22:14) is as we progress.

Amo 2:6 Thus saith the LORD; For three transgressions of Israel, and for four, I will not turn away the punishment thereof; because they sold the righteous for silver, and the poor for a pair of shoes;

Our own righteousness will not save us (Mat 5:20) and is filthy rags to the Lord (Isa 64:6). We stand or fall based on the Lord’s will and learning contentment in our trials and suffering is a long journey of “many tribulations”. Carnal men instinctively want to share in the Lord’s glory.

Eze 28:4 With thy wisdom and with thine understanding thou hast gotten thee riches, and hast gotten gold and silver into thy treasures:

Php 3:9 And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith:

As spiritual adulterers and adulteresses we are still loving this world despite our knowledge and this makes us enemies of God (Jam 4:4). These idols of our deceitful hearts and merchandising ways will be revealed to us when the fire is poured out in full measure.

Psa 115:4 Their idols are silver and gold, the work of men’s hands.

Zep 1:18 Neither their silver nor their gold shall be able to deliver them in the day of the LORD’S wrath in the land…

Knowledge by itself does not refine us or purify the heavens. It is the trials and the suffering we have been appointed to endure by that knowledge which brings salvation.

Isa 48:10 Behold, I have refined thee, but not with silver; I have chosen thee in the furnace of affliction.

Selling the poor for a pair of shoes is us seeking to save our old life and the protection and  comfort of holding on to our own righteousness.  To walk with Christ we must first loose our shoes and walk barefoot knowing our nakedness and the sin that lives within us.  Taking off our shoes is a sign of submission and humility of the dominion the Lord has over every aspect of our lives.  It precedes great judgments and deliverances at the hand of the Lord.

Exo 3:5  And he said, Draw not nigh hither: put off thy shoes from off thy feet, for the place whereon thou standest is holy ground.

Jos 5:15  And the captain of the LORD’S host said unto Joshua, Loose thy shoe from off thy foot; for the place whereon thou standest is holy. And Joshua did so.

Our flesh would rather forsake Christ and keep our sins and feet covered.  So removing our shoes is needed as the Lord begins to spoil and strip our  old way of life and the carnal reasoning that has us bound.

Isa 20:3  And the LORD said, Like as my servant Isaiah hath walked naked and barefoot three years for a sign and wonder upon Egypt and upon Ethiopia;

Isa 20:4  So shall the king of Assyria lead away the Egyptians prisoners, and the Ethiopians captives, young and old, naked and barefoot, even with their buttocks uncovered, to the shame of Egypt.

When the lost “prodigal” son return to His Father’s house, then the Father’s servants and angels clothe and instruct those released from their Babylonian prisons how to dress themselves in the house of God.

Luk 15:22  But the father said to his servants, Bring forth the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet:

Act 12:7  And, behold, the angel of the Lord came upon him, and a light shined in the prison: and he smote Peter on the side, and raised him up, saying, Arise up quickly. And his chains fell off from his hands.

Act 12:8  And the angel said unto him, Gird thyself, and bind on thy sandals. And so he did. And he saith unto him, Cast thy garment about thee, and follow me.

The Greek word for shoes, G5265 – hupodeō comes from root words meaning to BIND and the Hebrew word for shoes H5275na‛al comes from a root that means to LOCK or BOLT. We become bound to Christ by our judgment and as we mature in the faith, we become able to put on the whole armour of God. This includes wearing the “virtual” sandals of Jesus Christ that is the gospel of peace. These shoes is where we find true comfort and get the protection needed to run the race to the finish line.

Rom 10:15  And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!

Eph 6:15  And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace;

 

We will strive with the flesh and fight a great war in our heart and mind. Our old man and deceitful heart will concoct all manner of carnal lies, reasoning’s and deceits disguised as godliness to save his life rather than lay it down and lose it as a living sacrifice.

Amo 2:7  That pant after the dust of the earth on the head of the poor, and turn aside the way of the meek: and a man and his father will go in unto the same maid, to profane my holy name:

Panting after the dust of the earth is having strong desire to swallow (take to heart) the things of the carnal mind and the world. The carnal mind is the seed of the serpent who was ordained to eat dust (Gen 3:14). The Lord’s people are to be shaking this dust off our feet (Mat 10:14) and even commanded to diligently scrape it all off the walls of our houses (Lev 14:41).  Seeking after earthly dust, will cause us to pervert or turn away the way of the humble and the poor in spirit (the needy).

Pro 31:9 Open thy mouth, judge righteously, and plead the cause of the poor and needy.

Exo 23:6 Thou shalt not wrest (turn aside) the judgment of thy poor in his cause.

We have many warnings of the lies and false doctrines that arise within and without that pervert the gospel of Jesus Christ and turn us away from the truth. We first do this as sorcerers as we seek gain for our godliness.

Act 13:10 And said, O full of all subtilty and all mischief, thou child of the devil, thou enemy of all righteousness, wilt thou not cease to pervert the right ways of the Lord?

Going into the same maid as our old man is fornicating with the harlot and the treasures of the world. We will all leave our first love and return to the harlot until Christ comes the second time.

Pro 26:11 As a dog returneth to his vomit, so a fool returneth to his folly.

We need to be wise and be circumspect and walk not as fools and try the spirits within ourselves as well as those without (1Jo 4:1).

2Pe 2:18 For when they speak great swelling words of vanity, they allure through the lusts of the flesh, through much wantonness, those that were clean escaped from them who live in error.

2Pe 2:19 While they promise them liberty, they themselves are the servants of corruption: for of whom a man is overcome, of the same is he brought in bondage.

 

Amo 2:8 And they lay themselves down upon clothes laid to pledge by every altar, and they drink the wine of the condemned in the house of their god.

Continuing the theme of merchandising (buying and selling), we clothe ourselves in self-righteousness when we justify ourselves in the house of God. This self-righteousness is being exposed as we are being given the true garments of salvation and suffering the wrath of age enduring fire. We all first attend the wedding feast wearing our own self-made garment.

Mat 22:11 And when the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man which had not on a (proper) wedding garment:

We can’t bypass the Lord’s process. We are not made ready except by living through the complete (all seven) series of seals, trumpets and vials of wrath.

Rev 19:7 Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready. 

Rev 19:8 And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints.

The word for “lay themselves down” [H5186 – nâtâh] is only once in 238 occurrences translated as lay. The word really means to stretch.  Stretching clothes laid to pledge is speaking again of the works of our hands (our silver and dross) in seeking to save ourselves and justify ourselves. Self-righteousness, the old garment, has no place in the Lord’s house and when we try to patch the garments together, the hole from the truth is made worse.

Mat 9:16 No man putteth a piece of new cloth unto an old garment, for that which is put in to fill it up taketh from the garment, and the rent is made worse.

The true raiment of Christ is given to those who are GIVEN to endure through their trials to the very end. We will sow in tears and mourning but reap with joy.

Rev 7:13 And one of the elders answered, saying unto me, What are these which are arrayed in white robes? and whence came they?

Rev 7:14 And I said unto him, Sir, thou knowest. And he said to me, These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.

Isa 61:3 To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that he might be glorified.

Drinking the wine of the condemned in the house of God is us abiding in judgment, taking the punishment for our transgression and harlotry and thereby learning true righteousness in the process of falling and erring from the way (Isa 26:9, Jer 2:19). Anyone (everyone) who worships the beast and receives his mark will drink of the wine of the wrath of God in the house of God.

Rev 14:9 And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand,

Rev 14:10 The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb:

It is the Body of Christ, the same being the holy angels (messengers) of the Lord who minister the grace of God and pour out the vials of wrath that work the truth within us (Rev 15:6-8).

Judgment is the blessing and it comes only to the Elect who abide together in communion and fellowship.  Working together as one Body, it is the church that collectively makes known the manifold wisdom of God (Eph 3:10). These verses like all verses speak not of someone else, they speak of you and me if we are the Elect of God. We are condemned now for our self-righteousness so we won’t be condemned later with the rest of mankind.

1Co 11:32 But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world.

It is our failing to examine and judge ourselves why many are weak, sickly and asleep.

Amo 2:9 Yet destroyed I the Amorite before them, whose height was like the height of the cedars, and he was strong as the oaks; yet I destroyed his fruit from above, and his roots from beneath.

Amo 2:10 Also I brought you up from the land of Egypt, and led you forty years through the wilderness, to possess the land of the Amorite.

We rebel and remain disobedient to the law of Christ even after having witnessed the miraculous signs and wonders and deliverances from many enemies and giants.

Jos 5:6 For the children of Israel walked forty years in the wilderness, till all the people that were men of war, which came out of Egypt, were consumed, because they obeyed not the voice of the LORD: unto whom the LORD sware that he would not shew them the land, which the LORD sware unto their fathers that he would give us, a land that floweth with milk and honey.

Yet being driven by the carnal law (Heb 9:10) a law that is not good (Eze 20:25) made for the unrighteous (1Ti 1:9) will only get us so far. It takes the coming of Christ and the baptism by fire to enable us to cross over, enter in and begin to possess the land. This happens only when we abide with The Christ who is the Lord’s instruments of the greater works.

Rev 4:4 And round about the throne were four and twenty seats: and upon the seats I saw four and twenty elders sitting, clothed in white raiment; and they had on their heads crowns of gold.

Rev 4:5 And out of the throne proceeded lightnings and thunderings and voices: and there were seven lamps of fire burning before the throne, which are the seven Spirits of God.

The Lord gives us the seasons of relative quiet and peace so we may grow as a babe and feed on the butter/milk  and honey spiritually speaking. Yet to complete His good work in us, the flesh and our sinful way of life, represented here by the Amorites will manifest themselves again and again as our teaching and learning does not end. This is the occasion the Lord is, was and will be seeking to destroy all of our flesh and ultimately the flesh of all men.

Gen 15:16 But in the fourth generation they shall come hither again: for the iniquity of the Amorites is not yet full. 

Our carnal minded father the devil (Joh 8:44) is the father of all lies and is the father of the Amorites.

Eze 16:3 And say, Thus saith the Lord GOD unto Jerusalem; Thy birth and thy nativity is of the land of Canaan; thy father was an Amorite, and thy mother an Hittite.

This spirit of Satan is given power of death (Heb 2:14) and only Jesus Christ the creator and father of all spirits; can destroy the Amorite spirit which is deeply ingrained in all flesh.  The causing us to err from His ways (Isa 63:17, Jud 14:4) is the Lord causing evil in the cities within us to give occasion to bring about the destruction of our flesh. It will not be until the fourth generation or the whole of our judgment that the sins of the heathen Amorite nations will be fulfilled. We must learn patience and to wait on the coming of Christ and His performing His Word in us.

Col 2:11 In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ:

Jer 1:12 Then said the LORD unto me, Thou hast well seen: for I will hasten my word to perform it. 

Being saved is a lifelong process that we must endure to the end. It is not enough to start the race, it must be finished to win the prize (1Co 9:24, 2Ti 4:7) and be in the Holy and blessed first resurrection. The Lord is faithful to move us towards the earthquake that brings salvation little by little only as we can bear it. The Lord will not pass by Israel again once He puts the plumbline of righteousness (The Word) in His people.

Amo 7:8 And the LORD said unto me, Amos, what seest thou? And I said, A plumbline. Then said the Lord, Behold, I will set a plumbline in the midst of my people Israel: I will not again pass by them any more:

The words of Christ won’t return void. They will accomplish all the Lord sends them forth to do in the exact day and time ordained (Isa 55:11, Psa 139:16, Isa 46:10) before the world was formed. Next week we will continue with the transgressions of Israel as the rest of the Book is about the enduring judgment of the people of God.

We will begin with the topic of the Nazarites that will carry forward the snare of self-righteousness and us not submitting to the righteousness of Christ that is only by faith. Our zeal of God must be in spirit and in truth.

Rom 10:2 For I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge.

Rom 10:3 For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God.

Rom 10:4 For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone that believeth.