Texts: Amos 7:7-15; Ephesians 1:3-14; Mark 6:14-29
Nobody else likes Amos, but I sure do. I love the way that Amos pulls no punches when calling out people’s bad behavior. He is a good, old-fashioned fire-and-brimstone preacher proclaiming the wrath of God. “Woe to you who sell the poor for silver, and the needy for a pair of sandals,” he writes (8.6). Or this gem: “Hear this, you fat cows… you who oppress the poor, who crush the needy… The LORD GOD has sworn by his holiness: the time is surely coming upon you when they will take you away with… fishhooks [in your noses].” (4.1-2) The wrath of God makes us uneasy; we’d much rather hear about the love of God. And that is why I love Amos: because he brings us face to face with the uncomfortable truth that God’s love and God’s wrath are the same thing.