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September 15          Today’s Reading: Amos 6-9

“By whom shall Jacob arise?”

Amos 7:2


He by whom Jacob (God’s chosen) shall arise from the ruins of Adam’s fall is Jesus Christ our Lord. By the merits of His blood and righteousness, by the power of His grace, and by the efficacy of His intercession at the throne of grace, all God’s elect shall arise to life eternal. Then, at His glorious second advent, we shall arise in resurrection glory! O blessed hope!

            But Amos 6-9 is an assertion of Divine justice and of the certainty of Divine judgment. The prophet of God here calls sinners to flee for refuge and salvation to the Lord Jesus.


At Ease in Zion

In Amos 6:1 the prophet speaks a word of warning to sinners at ease, not in the world at large but at ease in Zion, under the roof of God’s Church. What an awful picture! Here the Spirit of God is talking about people sitting under the preaching of the Gospel who are yet total strangers to a work of grace in their hearts, living among God’s saints in ease, indolence, disregard, and utter contempt of God’s salvation. They are not grieved for the affliction of Joseph (the the agonies of the Lord Jesus — Lamentations 1:12 and Zechariah 12:10).

            If the Lord God has delivered us from such carnal presumption, how we ought to unceasingly bow before him and bless His holy name! It is only by His grace that we are delivered.


Famine in the Land

Amos 8:11-12 describe a time of horrible famine, “not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the Lord.” The prophet’s words here describe this day of spiritual famine. We have churches everywhere; but the Gospel of Christ is found almost nowhere! God’s messengers are, as Elihu stated, “one among a thousand” (Job 33:23), if that many! — “And they shall wander from sea to sea, and from the north even to the east, they shall run to and fro to seek the word of the Lord, and shall not find it” (Amos 8:12).

            What a terrible judgment this is upon any land or people! When God removes His Word, when He takes away His candlestick, all is darkness! When the Lord God removes His witness, when He takes the Gospel away, all hope is gone!

            Blessed Lord Jesus, grant that our candlestick may never be removed out of its place, but let Your sweet promise be our portion forever. — Though the Lord give the bread of adversity and the water of affliction, yet shall not our teachers be removed into a corner anymore, but our eyes shall see our teachers, and our ears shall hear a word behind us, saying, “This is the way, walk ye in it, when ye turn to the right hand, and when ye turn to the left” (Isaiah 30:20-21).


The Lord Judging

I saw the Lord standing upon the altar” (Amos 9:1). — Amos saw the Lord Jesus standing not between the cherubim upon the mercy-seat, but upon the altar. He stands not to be gracious, but to judge. Those before Him run for refuge, climbing up to heaven and digging down to hell; but none can escape, except those who take refuge in Christ. — “Behold, a King shall reign in righteousness, and princes shall rule in judgment. And a Man shall be as an hiding place from the wind, and a covert from the tempest; as rivers of water in a dry place, as the shadow of a great rock in a weary land (Isaiah 32:1-2).






Don Fortner








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