“…yet you did not return to me,” declares the LORD.”
Amos 4:6, 8, 9, 10, 11
If a person smokes 3 packs of cigarettes a day for 30 years, it would be no surprise that he gets emphysema and/or lung cancer.
If a person eats an entire pizza and drinks a 2-liter of soda pop every day for lunch, it should be no surprise that he gains weight and feels sluggish and weak.
Sickness and obesity are not punishments for this behavior so much as they are consequences of it!
If a person rejects God’s love and provision, there are also consequences to this rejection. There is no spite or “I’ll get you for this” kind of attitude on the part of God.
Famine, drought, pestilence, foreign invaders – all of these are in the control of God but not spiteful punishments from God.
They are consequences of Israel’s behavior.
But God, in his great mercy, is using these consequences to constantly call his people back to himself.
“Return to me” is a call to repentance. It is a call and an action of the Holy Spirit in the hearts of God’s people to turn away from sin and turn to God.
It is a call to turn away from death – a consequence of sin – and turn to life.
Even in all these consequences laid out in Amos 4, God is calling his people back to himself.
These consequences are intended to get the attention of the people.
It is like a person who is angry, in despair, and ranting and raving loudly all at the same time. A person who they love and who loves them dearly sometimes must literally slap them in the face to get them to stop and pay attention.
That’s what is describe in Amos 4.
When God has his people’s attention, they will turn to him. Turn to God who is the creator of “mountains and … wind.”
The last Old Testament-type of calling God’s people to turn to him would be in the words of John the Baptist, “Repent! For the kingdom of heaven is at hand!” (Matthew 3:2)
Three years after John’s message, there would be all the consequences of turning away from God poured out on one person – Jesus Christ.
He would take all the sins and the consequences on himself and suffer and die on the cross.
The ultimate consequence of sin – eternal death – would be paid in full by Jesus Christ.
And now the Holy Spirit – using the Means of Grace – calls each one of us back to God.
His mercy and grace are now ours for the sake of Jesus Christ.
His power and love give us the power to return to the Lord!
©2017 True Men Ministries