How can we evaluate whether our Feast is 'good' or not? God's criticism of Israel's feasts in Amos 5 teaches what God wants us to learn from His feasts.
The first commandment sets the stage for understanding Abraham's sacrifice of Isaac. God wanted to know: Would Abraham put Him first and have no other god?
Ancient Israel regarded Bethel, Gilgal, and Beersheba as a sacred shrines, but were not becoming spiritually transformed as a result of pilgrimages.
If we go to the Feast with the goal of physically enjoying, we may lose out on both the spiritual and physical benefits. 'Going through the motions' defiles it.
Amos severely chides Israel for exalting symbolism over substance, superstitiously trusting in locations where significant historical events occurred.
Sometimes, we get down because we think that all our labors for God have gone unnoticed. Elijah did, and his story points out a major lesson for us all.
The love of Abraham for Isaac serves as an emblem for the love of the Father for His Son and for all the children of Adam and Eve.
Isaac did not play what historians might judge to be a significant role on the world's stage, yet kept the faith, never despising the day of small things.
Based on his long friendship with God, Abraham could systematically calculate the reliability of God's promises even in the lack of visual evidence.
Abraham's resolute intent to sacrifice Isaac displayed his unreserved devotion to God's purpose for him. We must display the same kind of tenacity.
The Scriptures place a paramount importance on sacrifice. Abraham's 'sacrifice' of Isaac confirmed him to the position of father of the faithful.
The book of Amos is an astounding prophecy, closely paralleling the conditions in the Western world today. Amos reveals how unrighteousness undermines society.
The people to whom Amos writes have the mistaken assumption that because they have made the covenant with God, they can bask in a kind of divine favoritism.
Ancient Israel had at the core of its religion an obsession to please the self at the expense of justice and the best interests of the disadvantaged.
The elite athlete is the one with the gritty persistence and tenacity to fight on regardless of the obstacles, wanting nothing to do with mediocrity.
Abraham did not come from a primitive, but a highly advanced civilization, having huge multi-storied dwellings with running water and indoor bathrooms.