Ripe for judgment

To Follow Jesus

My notes on Every Day with Jesus, written by Selwyn Hughes; revised and updated by Mick Brooks, published by CWR.

July/August 2016 Issue –  Seek Me and Live‘let justice roll on like a river, righteousness like a never-failing stream’ Amos 5:24

The text set for today’s reading and meditation (the key verse is highlighted):

Amos 1:3-8 (NIVUK): ”This is what the Lord says: ‘For three sins of Damascus, even for four, I will not relent. Because she threshed Gilead with sledges having iron teeth,

I will send fire on the house of Hazael that will consume the fortresses of Ben-Hadad. I will break down the gate of Damascus; I will destroy the king who is in the Valley of Aven and the one who holds the sceptre in Beth Eden. The people of Aram will go into exile to Kir,’ says the Lord.

This is what the Lord says: ‘For three sins of Gaza, even for four, I will not relent. Because she took captive whole communities and sold them to Edom, I will send fire on the walls of Gaza that will consume her fortresses.

I will destroy the king of Ashdod and the one who holds the sceptre in Ashkelon. I will turn my hand against Ekron, till the last of the Philistines are dead,’ says the Sovereign Lord.”

As Selwyn says in his introduction, the reading for today describes God’s judgment on the nations because of their behaviour.

In his conclusion, he states: “The Almighty is at work weighing (judging) the nations. He is the One Creator God who is Lord of all the nations of the earth. As Christians we might like to keep Him for ourselves and claim His interest on our own behalf. However, the God we serve is the God of the nations. He is concerned about all the peoples of the earth, not just a favoured few.”

Consequently, President Obama is answerable to God for the behaviour of the United States, just as President Putin of the Russian Federation is responsible for the actions of his nation. God will be looking at the practice of justice, mercy and compassion by the leaders of all countries including their treatment of the poor, homeless and refugees.

This includes leaders of non-Christian countries – no one is exempt from the scrutiny of Jesus. There will come a time when everyone will have to give an account of their actions towards others.

It’s important for us to consider our support for our respective leaders; do we allow them to do whatever they wanted under the umbrella of the authority of their position, when we knew that their rule was in conflict with the teaching of Jesus? If, we ignored such behaviour then we too, will share in their condemnation. Are you feeling comfortable about this issue?