Lent 2018: The Words of Amos – Part 3

The Words of Amos – Part 3 Prepare to Meet Your God! Amos 4:1-13 March 4th, 2018

I. This is why they KILLED the PROPHETS. (v.1-3)
A. Politically incorrect HONESTY about… (v.1-3)
B. …EXTRAVAGANT self-ABSORPTION… (v.1; 6:4-6)
C. …NUMBNESS to the WORLD around you… (v.1)
D. …and their DESTRUCTIVE RESULTS. (v.2-3; 8:3)

This chapter is not high on Hallmark’s list of greeting card quotations. Amos says things that would not be well received by his audience. The truth can do that sometimes, it cuts deeply. That can be necessary too, because sometime we need the discomfort to wake us up from the numbness that we often drift into.

1. How can we know when to speak boldly like Amos or be more gentle and kind with our words? (See Mt. 10:16)
2. When have you needed hard words to help you honestly see something in your own life.

II. All of THIS and WORSHIP too! (v.4-11)
A. The use of DIVINE SARCASM. (v.4-5)
B. Disconnecting WORSHIP from LIFE. (v.4-5)
C. Using WORSHIP to meet our NEEDS. (v.5)
D. Missing the MESSAGE, refusing to RETURN. (v.6-11)

The numbness that has drifted into the lives of the Jews in Samaria has blinded them to the distortion of their worship. They are going through the motions, but it is walled off from their day to day actions. God is calling them back to Himself, but they will not return.

3. How do you define worship? What does worship look like to you?
4. How can we know if our worship is God-centered or more about us and what we want?

III. PREPARE to meet your GOD. (v.12-13)
A. An ALL-ENCOMPASSING vision. (v.13)
D. There are TWO sides of meeting GOD. (v.12)

The God they appear to be worshipping is setting up a face to face meeting with them. Prepare to meet your God. He is the one around whom all revolves. He is the creator and sustainer of everything we see. And He is the one who loves them, despite their brokenness.

5. When have you had a moment where you “met God”? What was that like for you?
6. Of the five characteristics of God in v.13, which is the most meaningful to you personally?

IV. Some LESSONS to take AWAY from Amos 4.
A. SELF-FOCUS can make you NUMB. (v.2)
B. WORSHIP is about more than US. (v.5)
C. God is BIGGER than we THINK. (v.13)
D. The TABLE is a great place to MEET. (Rom. 5:1,6-10)

Once again we see that a text written 2800 years ago has some very specific things to say to the world we live in. This shepherd-prophet cuts right to the heart of the way we live today and calls us to return to the God who loves us.

7. Rate yourself on a scale of 1 to 10 in regards to “numbness” to the world around you? Are you happy with where you are on that scale?
8. When have you seen God to be “bigger than you thought”?