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Amos 1:1-8

Talks for Growing Christians

Prophecies of Judgment Against Syria and Philistia

Amos 1:1-8

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Lesson Number 1

Background Notes

Doctrinal Point(s)

  1. God will judge acts of atrocity.
  2. God will judge the deportation of people.

Practical Application

  1. God may call you to be an Amos.

Questions

  1. When did Amos live and prophesy?
  2. How can we date Amos’ ministry?
  3. Describe the political structure of the kingdoms at this time.
  4. Where did Amos live?
  5. Why is Amos considered a foreign missionary?
  6. What was Amos’ message?
  7. Read Amos 1:2. What is the significance of the Lord being portrayed like an aroused roaring lion? How far was His message heard?
  8. What was Amos’ strategy in prophesying?
  9. What do we call the prophesies that were against the nations surrounding Israel?

Answers

  1. In the eighth century B.C., around the years 762-763 B.C.
  2. In Amos 1:1, we note the names of the kings and the earthquake. King Uzziah was reigning over the Southern Kingdom of Judah and King Jeroboam was reigning over the Northern Kingdom of Israel. The earthquake is also mentioned by the Jewish historian Josephus, and has been shown by archaeological studies to have occurred about 760 B.C. This same earthquake is mentioned later by the prophet Zechariah (Zechariah 14:5).
  3. The United Kingdom which existed under Saul, David and Solomon had split into the Northern Kingdom of Israel and into the Southern Kingdom of Judah.
  4. Tekoa, a village in the Southern Kingdom of Judah, not too far from Bethlehem.
  5. Amos’ ministry was not where he lived, God called him to prophecy to the Northern Kingdom of Israel.
  6. Amos preached against the social injustices that were going on in the Northern Kingdom of Israel. There was material prosperity in Israel at this time, but the people were morally and spiritually bankrupt. The wealthy and prosperous were taking advantage of the poor and disadvantaged. For this reason, Amos is known as the prophet of social justice.
  7. The Lord was angry and His judgment was about to fall on Israel. Like a liok ready to pounce, the Lord was ready to move out in judgment from His dwelling place in Jerusalem. God’s roar of warning was heard all the way from the shepherds’ fields in the south to the top of Mt. Carmel in the north.
  8. Rather than zero in immediately on the sins of the Northern Kingdom of Israel, Amos first prophesied against the sins of the foreign nations surrounding Israel.
  9. Amos’ Circle of Fire. If you plot these nations and their capitols on a map, you will find that God is circling in on Israel with these prophecies, getting closer to home with each surrounding nation.

Discuss/Consider

  1. Read Amos 1:3-8 and review notes on the Doctrinal / Teaching Points. Amos preached out against the social injustices that were going on in the Northern Kingdom of Israel. Name the particular sins and how God punished them.
  2. What does God, through Amos, have to say to us today? Are we guilty of these sins – the sins of atrocity and deportation?

Challenge

  1. Amos was called from among the sheepherders of Tekoa, straight out of “secular employment” to speak out against the social injustices of his day. Is it possible that God is calling you to be an Amos? How would you respond to such a call?

Key Verses

  • “The words of Amos, who was among the sheepbreeders of Tekoa...concerning Israel.” Amos 1:1 “The Lord roars from Zion…” Amos 1:2 “For the transgresssions of Damascus…I will punish…” Amos 1:3 “For the transgressions of Gaza…I will punish…” Amos 1:6

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