Ink and Truth
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Ink and Truth

The Famine That Amos Foresaw

God’s ways are not ours. Certainly. I wanted to read through the twelve minor prophets once more — and finish before the delivery of our first child. God’s providence and a sudden turn of events made sure that baby Joanna arrived earlier than we expected. I was still digging my way through the book of Amos when we came home with our precious daughter. Then began the 21-day lockdown.

Amos may not be a popular book in the Bible but I discovered that the minor prophet has a major message for this time we’re living in. We’re living in a time when believers are unable to gather together for corporate worship. The Scripture certainly commands believers to meet regularly for fellowship (Hebrews 10:24–25). “How are we going to gather together or encourage each other and have fellowship?”, I wondered, “What about God’s people all over the world?”. Continuing my reading, I discovered that Amos’ message presented a radical viewpoint:

These words are a strong reminder that personally seeking God’s face is what is needed to spiritually sustain us — especially during times like these when coming together for fellowship is not possible. But what exactly is the context of this verse? What else did God reveal to Amos?

When God is not worshiped anymore…

The sinful nature of man has always been inclined to idolize places of worship and seek them more than the One who alone is to be worshiped. Israel was no different during Amos’ time. The people of Israel had idolized Bethel, Gilgal and many other places and took pleasure in journeying to those places to worship God. It is true that God intended those places to be reminders of His faithfulness to Israel in times past. But those reminders had lost their significance and the places had become more important than God Himself. The people found a false sense of satisfaction in those spiritual pilgrimages. And God had a strong rebuke for them.

God wanted His people to seek His face and not any place.

Most Christians today are no different from the people of Amos’ time. Instead of seeking the Lord today, people are running after charismatic false teachers who preach a feel-good false gospel. People somehow choose to believe that certain people or places or buildings are somehow special and that God would pour out a special healing or blessing on them if they would go to a place or attend a specific worship service or listen to a special so-called prophet or apostle.

If you’ve been looking up to a certain place of worship or a specific Church service or if you’ve been inclined to listen to a specific person in order to hear from God, then this is a time of reflection for you. Your “lockdown” can be a time to sit down and look up. Seek the face of Christ in the Word of God. Quit running after popular preachers or megachurches or online services. Pick up and read the Bible for yourself instead of listening only to preachers.

Nothing else is more important for you today. Why?

The truth is scarce…

False teachers and impostors have somehow managed to sell their mega-church idea to unsuspecting Christians all over the world. Along with their popularity and influence, false teachings have come in like a flood, taking over the church and sweeping alive every naive Christian.

I recently came across a message drafted by a pastor of a 500-plus member church. I was surprised to see him recommend a list of preachers for his congregation to listen to while they’re locked down at home, unable to attend a worship service. The list of names that he recommended spoke volumes about how ignorant and void of discernment he was, given that he’s been a pastor for more than three decades! I beg you not to take any preacher or pastor at his word. Go and read the Bible yourself. If you are serious about following Christ, quit listening to those preachers and pick up your Bible. “Seek Me and Live”, says the Lord.

There’s so much deception around and many of you have no clue as to how much you’ve been deceived. Many things that are preached, prophesied and propagated in the name of Christ these days is absolute non-sense.

Perhaps, this is the famine Amos spoke about:

Today, there is a severe famine in the world — a shortage of people who would preach the plain old Gospel of repentance, calling people to live a holy life. If you’re not sure where to find one, stay home, stay safe and read the Bible for yourself.

A time to repent

During Amos’ time, God was sick of Israel’s hollow religious life:

Today’s popular worship is no different. God judges Israel saying:

This is the state of every local Church and popular megachurches around the world during these days. I miss genuine fellowship with people of God who value the truth but, at the same time, false teachers are also not in town. Their meetings, church services and programmes have been cancelled. I heard that a convention planned in my hometown had been cancelled — the false teachers who had been invited as royal guests to deceive thousands of people, had to cancel their plans and stay indoors. I’ll be glad if God’s people use this opportunity to learn to pick up their Bibles and seek God’s face instead of tuning in to those impostors online. This is a time of mercy.

Rescuing true worship

We have to quit buying the idea that worship is ONLY about singing songs and supernatural experiences. This is a major misunderstanding that has crept into the Church today, fueled by megachurches and popular ‘worship’ bands with far-reaching influences. We live in days when what is vile is popular and exalted — within the Church. I have seen numerous friends and family plainly buy into lies and false promises of cunning false teachers and flock to meetings to listen to them and obey them without any discernment whatsoever. And blinded Christians don’t seem to understand what kind of worship we’re called to (John 4:21–24). True worship is about living a transformed life in Christ’s power by carrying the Cross. True worship is offering your life to do God’s will. True worship is treating your neighbor well.

I’m afraid Christians are no longer are discerning, shrewd and careful in testing every doctrine and preacher out there. This is more deadly than COVID-19.

What are you scared of?

Christians today are more scared of losing wealth and health. They stay close to God because they’re afraid that if they sin, the devil would wreak havoc in their life and cause financial problems and inflict diseases. Let me confess — I’m scared of COVID-19 and I trust Jesus to keep me safe while taking all precautions. But I’m scared of something far worse:

I’m scared of losing the truth. I’m scared because the Church is losing it. I’m scared that my daughter will one day face a world where there is no preacher left alive to tell her who Jesus really is. The famine is coming. It is already here.

There are many who will ignore warnings blindly and still follow after false teachers. People hate me for telling the truth. But I tell you the truth again— it is far better for unbelievers on the day of Judgment than for those who ignore the warning of Scripture!



For the love of Christ and writing!

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Jim Moses

Follower of Christ and husband of Linda. Baby Isa is learning to call me ‘dadda’. I code for a living and love cycling, writing, driving, guitar & coffee! :D