Are you getting the message? Are you able to be aligned? Are you on the level? If there were a plumb line attached to your life how would it line up?
How will you allow God to use your life? How will you answer the call? How will you respond to the higher calling? Will you answer it? Will you be obedient to it?
How will you use the gifts He has given you? How will you use the talents He has given you?
Will you walk with open hands that can be used by God? Will you walk with closed fist worrying about what you could lose and miss out on what could have gone through your hands?
Are you seeing straight?
Today’s reading continues in Amos…
Locusts and the Trial by Fire
1This is what my Lord Adonai has shown me: Behold, He was forming locusts at the beginning of the spring crop—after the cutting of the king’s hay. 2When the locust-swarm had finished devouring the vegetation of the land, I said: “Adonai Elohim, please pardon! How can Jacob stand, for he is small?” 3Adonai relented concerning this. “It shall not be,” Adonai said. 4This is what my Lord Adonai has shown me: Behold, Adonai Elohim was calling for the trial by fire, and it would have devoured the great deep, and it would have devoured the territory. 5But I said: “My Lord Adonai, stop, please! How can Jacob stand, for he is small?” 6Adonai relented concerning this. “This also shall not happen,” says my Lord Adonai.
Plumb Line on a Wall
7This is what He has revealed to me: Behold, my Lord was standing by a vertical wall, and in His hand was a plumb line. 8Then Adonai said to me: “What do you see, Amos?” I said: “A plumb line.” Then my Lord said: “Behold, I am setting a plumb line among My people Israel— I will no longer pass over them. 9So the high places of Isaac will become desolate, the sanctuaries of Israel will be laid waste, and I will rise up against the house of Jeroboam with the sword.” 10Then Amaziah, the priest of Beth-el, sent word to King Jeroboam of Israel, saying: “Amos has been conspiring against you in the midst of the house of Israel. The land cannot endure all his words. 11For this is what Amos has said: ‘Jeroboam will die by the sword, and Israel will surely go captive from his land.’” 12Then Amaziah said to Amos: “Seer, go away! Flee back to the land of Judah. Eat bread there, and prophesy there. 13But at Bethel you are not to prophesy any more—for it is a royal sanctuary and a house of the kingdom.” 14So Amos responded and said to Amaziah: “I am no prophet, nor am I a son of a prophet. Rather, I am a shepherd tending fig trees. 15But Adonai took me from following the flock and Adonai said to me: ‘Go, prophesy to My people Israel.’ 16So now, hear the word of Adonai: You are saying, ‘Do not prophesy against Israel and do not preach against the house of Isaac.’ 17Therefore, this is what Adonai says: ‘Your wife shall become a prostitute in the city, your sons and your daughters will fall by the sword, and your land divided up by a measuring line. Now, as for you— you will die in an unclean land, and Israel will surely be led away captive out of its land.’”
–from Amos 7
How are you treating the poor? How are you looking at the afflicted? Are you living ethically? Are you living justly? Don’t cheat others! Don’t mistreat others!
We all have a part to play! Let’s be turning back to God before it is too late and things fall apart! Let’s become people of forgiveness! Let’s forgive others! Let’s ask God and others to forgive us! Let’s not walk in wicked ways, but turn back to God! Let’s humble ourselves and letting go of our pride give our lives to God! Let’s seek God and His will and His way! God’s Word is true! God’s promises are true! And if we will do this, we know…
Then if my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and restore their land. —from 2 Chronicles 7:14
Do you see what is going on around you? Do you see people who are trying to get away with lies? Do you see people who are trying to get away with mistreating others? Do you see people who are destroying the afflicted? Will you just stand by idly doing nothing?
A Basket of Summer Fruit
1This is what my Lord Adonai has shown me: See, there was a basket of summer fruit. 2He said: “Amos, what do you see?” “A basket of summer fruit,” I said. Then Adonai said to me: “The end has come to My people Israel. I will not again pass over them. 3The songs of the palace will become howls in that day.” It is a declaration of my Lord Adonai. “So many corpses flung everywhere! Hush! 4Hear this, you who trample the poor, destroying the afflicted of the land 5saying: ‘When will the New Moon be over, so we may sell grain? Or Shabbat, so we may open the wheat market? —Let’s reduce the ephah measure and increase the shekel, cheat with deceitful balances, 6buy the poor for silver, the needy for a pair of sandals! We’ll even sell the refuse of the grain!’” 7Adonai swore by the Pride of Jacob: “Never will I forget all their deeds! 8Will not the land tremble over this? Will not all who dwell in it mourn? Yes, it will rise up like all the Nile —it will surge and sink again like the Nile of Egypt.” 9“It will be in that day” —declares my Lord Adonai— “I will make the sun go down at noon, yes, I will darken the earth in daylight. 10I will turn your festivals into mourning and all your songs into a dirge. I will pull up sackcloth on every waist and baldness on every head. I will make it like the mourning for an only son— its end a bitter day.” 11“Behold, days are coming” —declares my Lord Adonai— “when I will send a famine on the land —not a famine of bread nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of Adonai. 12So people will wander from sea to sea and roam from north to east, searching for the word of Adonai, but they will not find it. 13In that day, the fair virgins and the virile young men will faint from thirst. 14Those swearing by Samaria’s guilt will say, ‘As your gods live, Dan!’ or ‘As the way of Beersheba lives!’ But they will fall, never to rise again.”
–from Amos 8
We need to stand up before it is too late! We need to stand out before it’s too late! We need to speak out before it is too late! Fear Not, just Believe!
God sees all! God knows all! Nothing is hidden from God! God knows your thoughts! God knows your heart! God knows even the things you haven’t said or done but just have thought them! He knows where you stand! He knows what you do and don’t stand for! He knows what you will and won’t stand for! He knows you better than you know yourself! We can’t run from Him because He is everywhere! He knows our names! He knows our every thought! He sees each tear that falls! He hears us when we call!
So what are you going to do? Today you have a choice! Choose wisely!
No Escaping His Eyes
1I saw my Lord standing by the altar, and He said: “Strike the tops of the pillars, so the porches shake! Break all of them off at the head! Then the last of them I will slay with the sword— none of them fleeing will escape and no fugitive will slip away. 2If they should dig down to Sheol, from there My hand will take them. If they should go up to heaven, from there will I bring them down. 3If they should hide themselves at the top of Carmel, I will search them out and take them from there. If they hide themselves from My eyes at the bottom of the sea, from there I will command the sea serpent to bite them. 4If they should go into captivity before their enemies, from there I will command the sword to slay them. I will set My eyes upon them for calamity and not for prosperity.” 5My Lord is Adonai-Tzva’ot. It is He who touches the land so it melts, and all its inhabitants will mourn. Then it will surge like all the Nile, and sink again like the Nile of Egypt. 6He who builds His upper stories in heaven fitted its vault over the earth. He who summons the waters of the sea and pours them out on the face of the earth —Adonai is His Name. 7“Are you not like the children of the Cushites to Me, Bnei-Yisrael?” It is the declaration of Adonai. “Did I not bring Israel up from the land of Egypt, the Philistines from Caphtor, and Aram from Kir?” 8Behold, the eyes of my Lord Adonai are on the sinful kingdom. So I will utterly destroy it from the face of the earth. Nevertheless, I will not annihilate the house of Jacob.” It is a declaration of Adonai. 9“For behold, I have commanded, and I will shake the house of Israel among all the nations, like grain being tossed in a sieve, without a pebble falling to the ground. 10By the sword shall all the sinners of My people die, those who say: ‘The calamity will not overtake or confront us.’
David’s Sukkah Restored
11“In that day I will raise up David’s fallen sukkah. I will restore its breaches, raise up its ruins, and rebuild it as in days of old 12—so they may possess the remnant of Edom and all the nations called by My Name.” It is a declaration of Adonai, the One who will do this. 13“Behold, days are soon coming” —it is a declaration of Adonai — “when the plowman will overtake the reaper and the one treading grapes, the one sowing seed. The mountains will drip sweet wine and all the hills will melt over. 14Yes, I will restore the captivity of My people Israel. They will rebuild desolated cities and dwell in them. They will plant vineyards and drink their wine. They will also make gardens and eat their fruit. 15Yes, I will plant them on their land, and they will never again be plucked up out of their land that I have given to them.” Adonai, your God, has said it.
–from Amos 9
Jesus has made a way that didn’t exist before Him! Jesus opened a path that leads us back home that didn’t exist before Him! Jesus closed the gap that was created by the original sin that wasn’t possible before Him!
So choose Jesus today! Ask Him into your heart! Ask Him what He would have you do! Ask Him what He would have you say! Ask Him what He would have you stop doing! Ask Him to make His will for your life known to you!
Don’t allow doubt – your’s or anyone else’s – rob you from the miracles God wants to do in and through your life!
Consider what God will be able to do in and through your life if you allow Him into your heart! Ask Jesus into your heart! Ask Him to create a new heart in you! Ask Him for wisdom in every situation! Be transformed and transform the world around you! Allow Him to take you right where you are today and to speak into your life! I remember getting the message about getting out of the boat just over 3 years ago! I remember getting the message that the 2nd half of my life will be twice as good as the first half on my last day on the job of my previous employer. God’s Word is alive and knows right where we are at! He loves us too much to leave us there! So what will you choose today?
Responding to Rejection
1Now Yeshua went out from there, and He comes to His hometown, and His disciples follow Him. 2When Shabbat came, He began to teach in the synagogue. Many listeners were amazed, saying, “Where did this fellow get these things? What’s this wisdom given to Him? Such miracles are done by His hands! 3Isn’t this the carpenter, the son of Miriam, and the brother of Jacob and Joseph and Judah and Simon? Aren’t His sisters here with us?” And they took offense at Him. 4Then Yeshua began saying to them, “A prophet is not without honor except in his hometown, among his relatives, and in his own house.” 5He was not able to do any miracle, except that He laid hands on a few sick people and healed them. 6And He was astonished because of their unbelief. And He was going around among the villages teaching. 7Yeshua summoned the Twelve, and He began to send them out two by two. And He gave them authority over the unclean spirits. 8He directed them to take nothing for the journey except a walking stick—no bread, no bag, no copper coin in their belt— 9but to wear sandals and not to put on two shirts. 10He was also telling them, “Wherever you enter a house, stay there until you leave that place. 11And whatever place will not receive you or listen to you, as you leave from there, shake the dust off the bottom of your feet as a witness against them.” 12So they went out and proclaimed that all should repent, 13and they were driving out many demons and anointing with oil many who were sick and healing them. 14King Herod heard, for Yeshua’s name had become known. Some were saying, “John the Immerser has risen from the dead! Because of this, these powers are at work in Him!” 15But others were saying, “It’s Elijah!” Still others were saying, “It’s a prophet, like one of the prophets of old.” 16But when Herod heard, he said, “John, the one I beheaded, has been raised!” 17For Herod himself sent and arrested John and bound him in prison for the sake of Herodias, the wife of his brother Philip, because Herod had married her. 18For John had been telling Herod, “It is not permitted for you to have your brother’s wife.” 19Now Herodias had a grudge against John and wanted to kill him, but she wasn’t able. 20For Herod was in awe of John and kept him safe, knowing him to be a righteous and holy man. When he listened to John he was confused, but he still listened gladly. 21An opportunity came—when Herod, on his birthday, gave a banquet for his high officials, military brass, and the leaders of the Galilee. 22When the daughter of Herodias came in and danced, she pleased Herod and those reclining with him. And the king said to the girl, “Ask me for whatever you want, and I’ll give it to you!” 23He vowed to her, “Whatever you ask of me I’ll give you, up to half of my kingdom!” 24She left the room and said to her mother, “What should I ask for?” Her mother said, “The head of John the Immerser!” 25Immediately she rushed to the king and requested, “I want you to give me, right now, the head of John the Immerser on a platter!” 26The king became very sorrowful; but because of his oaths and those reclining with him, he didn’t want to refuse her. 27Immediately the king sent an executioner and gave orders to bring John’s head. And the executioner went out and beheaded John in the prison, 28brought his head on a platter, and gave it to the girl; and the girl gave it to her mother. 29When John’s disciples heard, they came and took his body and laid it in a tomb.
Feeding 5000 Families
30The twelve emissaries gathered together with Yeshua, and they reported to Him all they had done and taught. 31There were many coming and going, and they had no time even to eat. So He said to them, “Come away by yourselves to an isolated place and rest awhile.” 32So they left privately by boat to an isolated place. 33However, the people saw them leaving, and many recognized them. They ran on foot from all the towns to get there ahead of them. 34As Yeshua came ashore, He saw a large crowd and felt compassion for them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd. So He taught them many things. 35When it was already late, His disciples came to Him and said, “This place is isolated, and the hour is already late. 36Send these people away so they can go into the nearby countryside and the villages and buy themselves something to eat.” 37But He answered and said to them, “You give them something to eat!” And they said to Him, “Should we go and spend two hundred denarii on bread to give them something to eat?” 38Then He said to them, “How many loaves do you have? Go and see.” When they found out, they said, “Five, and two fish.” 39Then Yeshua made them all sit down in groups on the green grass. 40So they reclined in groups of hundreds and fifties. 41And He took the five loaves and the two fish; and looking up to heaven, He offered the bracha. He broke the loaves and kept giving them to the disciples to serve to the people; and He divided the two fish among them all. 42They all ate and were satisfied, 43and the disciples picked up twelve baskets full of broken pieces and fish. 44Now there were five thousand men who ate the loaves.
Walking on Water
45Right away, Yeshua made His disciples get into the boat and go ahead of Him to the other side, to Bethsaida, while He Himself was sending the crowd away. 46After leaving them, He went up on the hillside to pray. 47And when evening came, the boat was in the middle of the sea and He was alone on the land. 48He saw the disciples struggling to row, for the wind was against them. Around the fourth watch in the night, Yeshua comes to them, walking on the sea; and He wanted to pass by them. 49But when they saw Him walking on the sea, they thought He was a ghost and cried out— 50for they all saw Him and were terrified. But immediately, He spoke to them. He said, “Take courage! I am. Do not be afraid.” 51Then He got into the boat with them, and the wind stopped. They were utterly dumbfounded, 52for they still hadn’t understood about the loaves. Instead, their hearts were hardened.
53After they had crossed over, they came to land at Gennesaret and set anchor there. 54As they got out of the boat, immediately people recognized Yeshua. 55They ran about the region and began to carry around on their mats all those who were in bad shape, to wherever they heard He was. 56And wherever He entered villages, towns, or countryside, people were placing the sick in the marketplaces and begging Him to let them touch even the tzitzit of His garment—and all who touched it were being healed.
–from Mark 6