Word for Today – Amos 7:2

How Can Jacob Stand?

My Bible subtitles Amos 7 “Vision of Judgement.” Here we go again – a somber, but necessary lesson using not less than locust. Sigh.

Every summer as a young girl my family spent time with my grandparents in central Oklahoma. The hot and humid environment hosted a smorgasbord of bugs that I never encounter in my arid home state of New Mexico. The only ones I liked were the fireflies that lit up the evening sky. But, the grasshoppers…ew, need I say more?

Although grasshoppers are bit different than locust in their behavior, every time I see “locus” in the Bible, the plentiful varieties of grasshoppers in rural Oklahoma are my reference point, and God gets my attention.

As a city-slicker child on the farm, I tried my best to stay away from those creep crawlers, but they were unavoidable when we headed to the fishing pond behind grandma and grandpa’s house. They jumped in my hair, my clothes, my exposed flesh, and, I’m not afraid to admit it, I screamed like a girl!

For as horrific as my childhood encounters were with grasshoppers, I cannot imagine dealing with locusts of judgement. The sheer numbers and voracious appetites of these efficient bugs are devastating to anything unfortunate enough to be in their path. But, these winged menaces also represent spiritual destruction and should not go unnoticed. God showed Amos a vision of of locus eating the grass of the land.

‘”O Lord God, forgive, I beg you! How can Jacob stand? He is so small!” The Lord relented concerning this; “It shall not be” said the Lord” (Amos 7:2 NRSV).

God planned to send judgement because, as recorded throughout Amos 6, Israel had gotten comfortable, lazy, stingy, and uncaring. As I’ve mentioned before, it isn’t bad to accrue wealth and comfort if they are accompanied with a healthy attitude. But, God did not (and still does not) approve of ungodly attitudes such as arrogance, greed, and hard hearts. He must have seen locusts as a fitting attitude adjustment for his wayward people.

I’m not sure why God relented and told Amos that the locust “shall not be,” but maybe it stemmed from God’s merciful nature. But, the bigger lesson for us today is to ask ourselves if maybe, just maybe our actions warrant a swarm of disgusting locust. It may be prudent to apply this to not only our personal lives, but to our nation as a whole. It’s getting a little crazy out there, wouldn’t you agree? Politics, movies, and the awful things people do that seem to be more frequent. It’s a mad, mad, mad world.

Amos worried that Israel was so small and couldn’t stand. The United States may be the most powerful country in the world, but compared to God, we are small and there are a lot similarities between the Israel of Amos’ time, and today’s USA. I don’t know about you, but I think we need to wake up as individuals and as citizens. We need to educate ourselves and know what truth is in the economy, our Constitution, and moral living. Once we start pursuing Truth, it may be a good idea to elect leaders who understand those concepts as well.

I don’t want locusts.

Word for Today: How can Jacob stand? How can the United States stand? Pursue Truth.

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This entry was posted on Thursday, June 9th, 2011 at 3:19 pm and is filed under Amos, Word for the Day. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.


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