“Behold, the days are coming,” declares the Lord God, 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 the Lord.” Amos 8:11
I was struck by the horror of this statement the other day. Can you imagine God removing His Word from His people? We cannot know God or ourselves without His Word. We cannot know His blessings without His Word (see Psalm 19).
But, there comes a point when God removes His Word from a society. This is especially scary considering the increasing Biblical illiteracy in America and the Western World. There is mounting evidence that as we continue to turn our backs on God, He continues to give us over to increasing sin. Read through Romans 1 starting at about verse 18 if you are not sure of this.
Thinking about this caused me to consider why God would send a famine for the Word. God is not silent. He does explain Himself in the book of Amos. Consider just some of the reasons, God sends a famine of the Word upon His people:
- Oppression of the poor (Amos 2:6-7)
- Gross sexual immorality (Amos 2:7-8)
- False religion (Amos 3:14)
- Excessive materialism (Amos 3:15-4:1)
- Failure to return to the Lord after His warnings (Amos 4:7-11)
- Excessive luxury (Amos 6:1, 4-6)
It would be very easy to look through this list and condemn the culture. But should we not look within? Don’t these sins characterize the church? Have you bought into the lie that truth is relative? Are you pursuing luxury and leisure instead of God? Are you so consumed with profit in your business that you ignore the cries of the poor who are just trying to make ends meet? I fear that we in the church are often guilty of these very sins. Let’s listen to the Lord and repent lest God send us a famine of the Word.
Pastor Mike Walters