The book of Amos is an astounding prophecy, closely paralleling the conditions in the Western world today. Amos reveals how unrighteousness undermines society.
Israel had every opportunity that the Gentiles did not have. God gave the Israelites gifts to live a better way, but they completely failed to reflect Him.
John Ritenbaugh suggests that the people everywhere seem frazzled, distressed, and terrified as a dark, evil, sinister force seems to be engulfing the world. The continued angst from dealing with this continual pathogenic zeitgeist threatens to render all of us, including God's called-out ones, into a state of hopelessness, …
In the rich young ruler, we see a respectful and eager young man who leaves Christ and goes away sorrowful. The Christian walk is particularly hard for the wealthy.
John Ritenbaugh observes that ancient Israel had at the core of its religion (as well as its dominant cultural norm) an obsession to serve or please the self at the expense of justice and truth and the best interests of the socially disadvantaged. Because of Israel's excessive self-seeking and self-serving pride, God threatens …
Members of God's church usually come home from the Feast of Tabernacles with renewed strength. Yet, some fall away each year. Here's how to stay the course.
Our love for beauty must be coupled with love for righteousness and holiness. Our relationship with Christ must take central place in our lives, displacing all else.
In the Bible, eating can be a symbol of fornication. Like Jacob and Christ, we must learn to curb our appetites, learning to distinguish holy from profane.
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.
Our biggest danger at this time is to be lured into spiritual drunkenness by the pagan Babylonian system. Our God is not what we say we worship but whom we serve.
The best way to attain true wealth and the abundant eternal life is to loosen our grip on worldly rewards and treasures, and single-mindedly follow Christ.
John Ritenbaugh reiterates that when a person contemplates revenge, he makes an enemy of God. Amos, like a circling hawk, makes dire pronouncements on all of Israel's enemies but reserves the harshest judgment for Israel, who should have known better, having made the covenant with Almighty God, but profaning their calling and …
Jesus taught that all outward sin stems from inner inordinate desire. What we desire or lust after automatically becomes our idol.
God can take satisfaction that He is doing the right thing, and thus His rejoicing can even come from painful judgments. Sarcificing and rejoicing are linked.
Often physical prosperity works against godly character and spiritual well-being. To be rich toward God means to seek His Kingdom first, live His way, and trust Him.
Laodiceanism is the attitude that dominates the end time. It is a subtle form of worldliness that has infected the church, and Christ warns against it strongly.
Coveting—lust—is a fountainhead of many other sins. Desiring things is not wrong, but desiring someone else's things promotes overtly sinful behavior.
Focusing on the opulence of Las Vegas, John Reid reflects that our people of modern Israel have become truly spoiled, surfeiting on the blessings given to Abraham's offspring. The danger of abundant blessings is that we tend to forget the source of these blessings and cease to become thankful. When people forget to be thankful, …
In God's plan, the development of uncompromising character requires struggle and sacrifice. Our victory requires continual drill, tests and development of discipline.
John Ritenbaugh describes the process through which God perfects His image in us, linking three sub-themes: 1) God's disciplining, 2) our listening, and 3) God's watchful care. Obedience to God's Word strengthens us, enabling us to receive our spiritual heritage. Remembering the lamentable condition of our slavery to sin and …