Lesson 13

Restoration

(Amos 9)
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Introduction: This week we come to the end of our study of the book of Amos. How would you guess a book like Amos should end? After all of the warnings, after all of the predictions of gloom and doom, how would you write the last chapter? Let's jump in and see how things turn out!

  1. Repair


    1. Read Amos 9:11. Verse 11 starts out, "in that day." What day are we talking about? (Let's go back and revisit Amos 9:10. "That day" is the day of judgment and destruction of sinners.)


    2. Let's go back and finish up the entire sentence by reading Amos 9:11-12. Out of this destruction, what is God's promise for the future? (That He will make things as they used to be. He will repair what He has destroyed.)


      1. Who is "Edom" and why would they (the righteous) want to possess it? (J.A. Motyer's commentary on Amos explains that Edom represented all that was hostile to the kingdom of God. After defeating the evil of Edom, what is left (the remnant) will not only be possessed by God's people, but it will (v.12) "bear [God's] name." Note that King David was the only one to conquer and hold the literal kingdom of Edom. (2 Samuel 8:14))


    3. Read Acts 15:15-18. What is James quoting? (He is quoting the text we just read in Amos!)


      1. Let's find out what this is about. Read Acts 15:1-2. What is the controversy? (Whether and how the Gentiles can be saved.)


      2. Read Acts 15:7-11. How would you summarize Peter's argument?


      3. Read Acts 15:13-20. How does James use and understand his quotation from Amos 9? (He uses it as God's prediction that gentiles will become part of God's people and that His people should not "stand on ceremony" to prevent them from joining.)


    4. Is it proper for James to quote a text that, as we know from our study of Amos, is a prediction of doom for Israel that actually took place a long time before? (This is an important principle of prophecy. Some prophecies have multiple applications. James was completely correct in applying the prophecy of Amos to his time.)


    1. How do you explain that Amos 9:12 refers to "possess[ing] the remnant of Edom?" (This is the great gospel commission! By converting "gentiles" we "may possess the remnant of Edom" just as King David "possessed" Edom. The difference is that we possess it by persuasion and conversion - not conquest.)


    2. As you consider Amos 9:11-12 do you see any "conversion" possibility here? Is there anything here that would cause you to convert if you were an unbeliever? (What else is Amos all about, other than conversion? Why would God send a messenger to threaten people with destruction if he did not have a redemptive goal? The goal of Amos is to have the people repent and return to God. That is apparently what happened to a "remnant." That is part of God's "repair.")


    3. Is this message from God as relevant today as it was in the days of Amos and James?


  1. Future Farmers


    1. Read Amos 9:13. I must say that since I don't have a background in farming, this is a little difficult for me to understand. Let's work it through. What are the "reaper" and the "one treading grapes" doing? (They are gathering in the food and processing it.)


      1. What are the plowman and the planter doing? (They are preparing the soil and putting in the seed.)


      2. So, what is going on if the two preparing the soil and putting in the seed are "overtaking" the two who are gathering the food and processing it? (It seems the people are not done gathering and processing the food from the last growing season when the people putting in the new crop come on the scene.)


        1. Is that good? (Yes! It seems to say they have a harvest that is so huge they cannot get it all in and processed before the next growing season.)


      3. Why would new wine "drip" from the mountains and "flow" from the hills? (This is another picture of an abundant harvest. The land is "sweating" grape juice!)


  2. Enjoy


    1. Have you ever heard of a situation where a person works for 30 or 40 years and then retires, only to die a few months later? Why is that so troubling? (They did not get to enjoy the retirement they deserved.)


    2. Read Amos 5:11. Do you remember this as part of the judgment that Amos promised? Now read Amos 9:14. What is the difference here? (God promises that those who are faithful to Him will be allowed to live in their own cities, drink the wine of their vineyards and eat the fruit of their gardens. No one will take the "reward" of their work away from them.)


    3. Are you looking forward to a retirement of sitting back and watching television? Is that the picture we have from God about the future? (No. God has work in mind for us. What makes the difference is that you get to keep what you have made.)


      1. What does that suggest about how we should live life now?


      2. Amos is filled with warnings about the rich mistreating the poor. What lesson might we find in verse 14 about how we should treat the poor? (The common complaint in Amos is that the rich are cheating the poor. They are taking advantage of them. Nowhere does it suggest that the rich have an obligation to help individuals who are unwilling to help themselves. Indeed, the goal seems to be a productive life where you get to keep what you have earned. Amos approach to the rich is to be fair and kind to the poor. His approach to both the rich and the poor is to work. This accords with Paul's statement in 2 Thessalonians 3:10 if you don't work you should not eat. God's goal for our life is to enjoy productive work.)


    4. Read Amos 9:15. Why does God say He will "plant" Israel? (He looks forward to His people growing.)


      1. Earlier, we discussed the multiple fulfillment of prophecy. This seems to be a prophecy that could apply to our future in heaven. If this is a view of heaven, how is a plant a good analogy? (There are a couple of ideas here. First, God looks forward to us "growing" in heaven. Our wisdom and spiritual insight will continue to develop. Second, the plant has a special relationship with the land. The word picture here is that God will give us a place to live that will help us to grow. It will be a pleasant place.)


    5. Friend, how about you? Do you look forward to a time and place when you never have to worry about someone "taking away" your family members? Never have to worry someone "taking away" your life or your stuff? Do you look forward to a pleasant place? This is what God offers to those who are faithful. Will you decide today to be part of the "remnant of Edom?"


  3. Next week: We start a new quarter on the "Cosmic Conflict Between Christ and Satan." The title of our lesson next week is "War in Heaven."

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Lessons on Amos

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