Amos 5

* Israel is called to seek the Lord. (1-6) Earnest exhortations

to repentance. (7-17) Threatenings respecting idolatries.

(18-27)

1-6 The convincing, awakening word must be heard and heeded, as

well as words of comfort and peace; for whether we hear or

forbear, the word of God shall take effect. The Lord still

proclaims mercy to men, but they often expect deliverance from

such self-invented forms as make their condemnation sure. While

they refuse to come to Christ and to seek mercy in and by him,

that they may live, the fire of Divine wrath breaks forth upon

them. Men may make an idol of the world, but will find it cannot

protect.
7-17 The same almighty power can, for repenting sinners, easily

turn affliction and sorrow into prosperity and joy, and as

easily turn the prosperity of daring sinners into utter

darkness. Evil times will not bear plain dealing; that is, evil

men will not. And these men were evil men indeed, when wise and

good men thought it in vain even to speak to them. Those who

will seek and love that which is good, may help to save the land

from ruin. It behoves us to plead God's spiritual promises, to

beseech him to create in us a clean heart, and to renew a right

spirit within us. The Lord is ever ready to be gracious to the

souls that seek him; and then piety and every duty will be

attended to. But as for sinful Israel, God's judgments had often

passed by them, now they shall pass through them.
18-27 Woe unto those that desire the day of the Lord's

judgments, that wish for times of war and confusion; as some who

long for changes, hoping to rise upon the ruins of their

country! but this should be so great a desolation, that nobody

could gain by it. The day of the Lord will be a dark, dismal,

gloomy day to all impenitent sinners. When God makes a day dark,

all the world cannot make it light. Those who are not reformed

by the judgments of God, will be pursued by them; if they escape

one, another stands ready to seize them. A pretence of piety is

double iniquity, and so it will be found. The people of Israel

copied the crimes of their forefathers. The law of worshipping

the Lord our God, is, Him only we must serve. Professors thrive

so little, because they have little or no communion with God in

their duties. They were led captive by Satan into idolatry,

therefore God caused them to go into captivity among idolaters.
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