The calling of Amos as a prophet is somewhat different than the others.  Amos said of himself in Amos 7:14-15, “…I was no prophet, neither was I a prophet’s son; but I was an herdman, and a gatherer of sycomore fruit: And the LORD took me as I followed the flock, and the LORD said unto me, Go, prophesy unto my people Israel.”  We see that he was a simple, possibly poor, herdman, or shepherd.  We learn from Amos 1:1, that although he was from Judah, the Lord sent him to the ten tribes of Israel with a word from Himself.  Amos’ message was primarily to Israel, concerning their spiritual and moral condition.

In the first two chapters of the book, the Lord threatens Israel with impending judgment.  In chapters 4-5, the prophet calls upon the people to listen to the warnings of the Lord.  Amos 3:1 says, “Hear this word that the LORD hath spoken against you, O children of Israel…”  It seems that at the time Israel was going through a period of plenty, yet because of that, they began to oppress others.  There is a second call to listen to the Lord in Amos 4:1, “Hear this word, ye kine of Bashan, that are in the mountain of Samaria, which oppress the poor, which crush the needy, which say to their masters, Bring, and let us drink.”  Because of their wicked behavior, the Lord pronounced that He would take away their prosperity.

In Amos 4:4-11, the Lord reminds the people of how He had judged them with harsh judgements because of sinful acts, yet we read in Amos 4:11, “…yet have ye not returned unto me, saith the LORD.”  The chastening hand of the Lord had not caused Israel to return to the Lord, so in verse 12, the Lord tells Israel to get ready to meet Him.  That says, “Therefore thus will I do unto thee, O Israel: and because I will do this unto thee, prepare to meet thy God, O Israel.”  While some people use this verse as a Gospel verse, we can see plainly from the context that this is the Lord telling His people that He was about to judge them.  Having reminded Israel of how He had sent punishment upon them because of their sin, He now points out that they will have to meet Him.  We read in Hebrews 10:31, “It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.”  Here in our portion, the Lord is telling His people to get ready to face this ‘fearful thing.’  Get ready to face Him in their sins.

Let’s see if we can apply that verse to ourselves.  We read in Romans 14:11-12, “For it is written, As I live, saith the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God. So then every one of us shall give account of himself to God.”  No one will escape this scene.  Every person that has ever lived will stand before God; their knees will bow before Him and, according to Philippians 2:11, “every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”  This does not mean that by bowing the knee to the Lord that everyone will be saved.  Nothing could be farther from the truth.  All those who face the Lord without having Christ as their savior, will bow before the Lord as their judge.  They will then be sentenced to ‘everlasting punishment.’  For those without Christ, we read in Revelation 20:13 that, “…they were judged every man according to their works.”  Then in verse 15 we read, “And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.”

Yet, all those who will bow their knee to the Lord today will be saved.  Romans 10:9-10 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.”  Wouldn’t you rather bow before the Lord as your savior, rather than as your judge?  Make no mistake, everyone will eventually bow their knee to the Lord and confess that Jesus Christ is Lord.  Accept Him as your savior, or you will bow before Him as your judge.  (184.3)