“Prepare to meet your God” – “Amos 4:12”
I guess if I were to ask everyone here now what was the most popular phrase that is used on the large sandwich boards that are sometimes seen being carried about the answer would be either “The end of the World is Nigh” or “Prepare to meet your God.” When these are seen inevitably, they arouse in the minds of those that see them nothing but ridicule and mockery. Yet, the idea and particularly the message that is being conveyed is very pertinent and profound.
In addition, they, carry with them some tremendous truth that should be taken heed of. So for a little while I want to centre our thoughts around where the saying “Prepare to meet your God” originates, because I believe today that the same message is one that should be taken very responsibly to heart today.
The words were spoken by a Herdsman by the name of Amos, who was working in a place called Tekoa. One day whilst he was at about his usual duties of tending his flock, God spoke to him in a vision and showed him the terrible judgments that He was going to bring upon Israel. The vision given was so Amos as the messenger of God would live up to his responsibility and go to the people of Israel and warn them of the impending judgment that was about to come upon them. Why was he required to do so? It was in order that they might change their ways and in truth and sincerity of heart, serve God once again and do those things that were pleasing in His sight.
Israel had at this time, even though they were a Nation so especially favoured by God both individually and collectively totally gone away from the principles of right and wrong, and were doing those things that were considered right in their own eyes. All the desires of their hearts and motives were tainted by sin, it was very much like the Bible describes in “Genesis 6:5-6” where it says “And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. And it repented the Lord that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart.”
Sin had entered into the life of the Nation and it had like a cancer started to eat away at the very foundation of the Nation. Israel’s National Heritage was gradually disappearing (much like it is doing in the United Kingdom and many other places right now). When sin takes the upper hand and Christian principles, Biblical principles are diminished then in like manner goes the Nation.
In three distinct ways Israel had gone downhill: –
Does that sound at all familiar?
In a spiritual manner the people had hardened their hearts against God and the calls of conscience within them, and they were holding up a fist as it were in proud defiance to God and His laws.
In “Verse 6” we discover that also in a social manner they were doing only that which seemed right unto themselves. They had perverted the course of justice in the land by accepting bribes, and the net result of this was that Boys and Girls were being sold into slavery, and no thought whatever was being given to the less fortunate than themselves. In “Verse 7” it speaks of them as being trampled in the dust. Also, in a sexual manner they were living in disobedience to Gods will.
We are told in the context of the verses that a Father and Son would enter the religious temple, and their they would engage in the rape of the women serving as nuns, such was the depravity of the people, and it is no wonder that Gods judgment was imminent. To make things worse there was such hypocrisy because these same people would next be seen offering sacrifices in the same temples – Jesus would have called them “Painted Sepulchres”.
It was to such a Nation that Amos was sent with his message of “Prepare to meet your God.” Now we might be saying in our mind right now, “but what’s that all that got to do with me?” Well let me tell say. As a Nation and as Individuals are, we any different? Is there not hypocrisy seen on every hand, do we not as a Nation have an attitude of “I’m all right Jack”. Do we not engage in religious attitudes, when all the time we are living just the way we want to, of course we do?
The hearts of Men and Women and Boys and Girls have hardened to the truths of God’s Word the Bible, and through the influence of Cults and Modern Theology a lack of Doctrinal Teaching of Foundational Bible Truth things has become twisted and corrupted. It is no wonder that today Gods declaration is “For all have sinned and come short of the glory (plumb line) of God” – “Romans 3:23” and His further declaration is “There are none righteous no not one.” – “Romans 3:10”
All around about us we read in the Newspapers and we hear on the Radio or we see on the Television of the perversions of justice and the corruption in high places. We are bombarded on every hand by sexual deviation and immorality, and truly the younger generation is being sold down the river into slavery to the traditions and rules of the organisations established by their forefathers.
Let me provide what some eminent men have said: –
The Church today is not standing up against injustice, immorality, perversion, and corruption as it should and as individual Churches we are not doing so and as individuals we are not. Our day is really no different to the day of Amos, and you know there is that old saying “History repeats itself”, and one day it will.
It was Billy Graham who said, “If God does not soon judge America, He will have to apologise to Sodom and Gomorrah” and the same could be said of the United Kingdom and many other Nations.
In “Romans 1:24-28” we read some very solemn words relating to God giving people groups over – was it God has given them over to?
“To sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another” – “Verse 24”
- Giving their hearts’ sinful desires free rein, the wicked degrading themselves in sexual immorality.
“To shameful lusts” – “Verse 26”
- Both Men and Women abandoning the natural sexual functions and committing homosexual acts.
“To a depraved mind” – “Verse 28”
- The result is that “they do what ought not to be done.” The depraved mind without the light of God will naturally run to evil and, unless divinely checked, will work out the full extent of its depravity.
This is the position we find ourselves in and Amos did also. However, the thing we have to keep in mind is that Nations are composed of individuals, i.e. you and me, and we are either part of the problem, or we are part of the solution, there is no way we can sit on the fence.
We live our lives for three score and ten, and then we look towards entering into eternity, that is a fact that we cannot deny. But are we prepared? If our lives were put today in the balances, would we be found wanting, well I can tell say of a surety that if our life has not been committed to Jesus Christ and we have not taken Him as our Saviour, then we will be found wanting, and we will enter eternity unprepared.
As I conclude today let me ask the question – “Are we prepared” today. “Have we you made the required preparations to meet with God” if not then don’t delay.
Jesus said, “I AM the way the truth and the life” and by this we understand that He is the He is the way in which we can be prepared for Eternity and Gods judgment.
It was God who had Jesus die on the Cross at Calvary and He did so in order that all men everywhere might get the chance to have their sin forgiven and the judgment passed and of course enter Heaven. If that opportunity has not been taken then there is an urgency to do so the Bible says “Today is the day of Salvation, now is the acceptable time”