“Woe to you who desire the day of the Lord! What end do you have? The day of the Lord is darkness and not light, as if a man fled from a lion and a bear met him, or entered the house. and he leaned his hand on the wall and a snake bit him. Will not the day of the Lord be darkness rather than light, even if very dark and dull? Amos 5:18-20 (read v. 18-24)
Are you ready for the Day of the Lord? Most have little fear of this day or its consequences for them. Most assume that all is well in their souls and the judgments of God are far from their minds.
It’s a bit like the days of ancient Israel under the reign of Jeroboam II. Israel became strong again and defeated its enemies. It was a time of prosperity. Yet Jeroboam II continued in the sinful ways of Jeroboam, the son of Nebat. Instead of being a time of repentance and return to the Eternal God who had shown mercy to his people, they continued in idolatry and disregard of the commandments of God. see 2 Kings 14:23ff.
So today our people – even our churches – live in prosperity and are secure in their sinful ways. They disregard the teaching and worship of the Bible and serve gods fashioned in their image and way of thinking. Our nation’s laws are made to protect abortion, euthanasia, immorality, sexual perversion, theft and theft. People assume that all is well and that they are ready for the Day of the Lord but do not see the judgment of the Almighty which is about to fall upon them.
The words of Amos the prophet surely apply (Amos 5:18-24): “Woe to you who desire the day of the Lord! What use is it to you? The day of the Lord is darkness and not light, as if a man fled before a lion and a bear met him, or entered the house and pressed his hand against the wall and a serpent bit him: shall not the day of the Lord be not darkness rather than light, even very dark and dull in I hate and despise your feasts and I will feel nothing in your solemn assemblies Even if you offer me burnt offerings and your food offerings, I will not accept them, neither will I look upon the peace offerings of your fat. Take away from me the sound of your songs, for I will not hear the melody of your harps. But judgment flow like waters and righteousness like a river. powerful.
The Day of the Lord for our nation and our people will not bring justification; it will bring judgment and death! Our idolatry and our sins will be exposed for what they are, and our people will discover that their worship and service to God were shams. God did not accept them because their hearts were far from Him and they paid little heed to His Word (cf. Matt. 15:8-9; Isaiah 29:13-14).
And us, and us? Are we ready for the Day of the Lord? Will we be justified by the judgment of God? As Amos prophesied, it is not enough to say all the right words and offer all the right forms of praise. God desires the fruits of true faith! God desires that we trust in his mercy and forgiveness in Jesus Christ, and then also live a righteous and upright life in accordance with his Word. See Isaiah 1:1-20.
What does this prophecy ask us to do? Examine our ways, repent of our sins, turn to the Eternal God for mercy and forgiveness because of Jesus Christ our Savior, then amend our lives and live for the Eternal God in obedience to His Word.
Doing the right things, saying the right words and singing the right hymns are not enough! God calls us – each one of us – to examine our ways and repent, expecting Him for mercy in Jesus Christ and for His help and strength to amend our sinful ways in accordance with His perfect Word. See Psalm 139:23-24; 2 Cor. 13:5; 1 John 1:7–2:6; Micah 6:8; Deut. 10:12-13.
O just and merciful God, we know that the day of your judgment is approaching and that we too deserve your wrath and your punishment. Have mercy on us for Jesus’ sake and forgive our sins, and lead us to walk in your ways and live according to your perfect Word. Amen.[Scripture is quoted from the Revised Common Version of the Bible. Devotion is by Randy Moll. He may be contacted by email at [email protected] Moll’s other devotional writings can be read freely at https://goodshepherdonline.org. The opinions expressed are those of the author.]