3D Devotional 7.15.2019

Monday, July 15    How do you measure up to the Plumb-line?   Amos 7:7-9

Today’s 3D Reading comes from the Book of Amos.   Amos is the third of the 12 minor prophets. He was an older contemporary of Hosea and Isaiah and was active 750 B.C.  Amos was a shepherd, by occupation.  For that reason, the imagery used in the scriptures relates to the life of the common people of the day.   Trivia - Biblical historians believe making Amos was the first book of the Bible to be written.

Biblical background: God and Amos communicated through a series of three visions. In the first two dreams, God warned about His coming judgment against Israel.   Amos protested and pleaded for their mercy. The first vision was about a swam of devouring locust. The second vision was about a devastating fire. After each dream, the Lord relents to Amos.  God takes a different approach to convince Amos in the third vision. Amos was a man of simple means. God uses a plumb-line to illustrate that Israel’s actions were not measuring up to God’s standards.   A plumb-line is a simple tool consisting of with a string and weight to determine whether or not a structure built soundly. Even though a wall or a building might appear to be perfectly upright to the naked eye, a plumb-line can detect it if it was even one or two degrees off.

3D Scripture Amos 7:7-9 -   7 This is what the Sovereign Lord showed me: He was preparing swarms of locusts after the king’s share had been harvested and just as the late crops were coming up. 2 When they had stripped the land clean, I cried out, “Sovereign Lord, forgive! How can Jacob survive? He is so small!”  3 So the Lord relented.  “This will not happen,” the Lord said.
4 This is what the Sovereign Lord showed me: The Sovereign Lord was calling for judgment by fire; it dried up the great deep and devoured the land. 5 Then I cried out, “Sovereign Lord, I beg you, stop! How can Jacob survive? He is so small!”  6 So the Lord relented. “This will not happen either,” the Sovereign Lord said.
7 This is what he showed me: The Lord was standing by a wall that had been built true to plumb,[a] with a plumb line[b] in his hand. 8 And the Lord asked me, “What do you see, Amos?”

“A plumb line,” I replied. Then the Lord said, “Look, I am setting a plumb line among my people Israel; I will spare them no longer. 9 “The high places of Isaac will be destroyed and the sanctuaries of Israel will be ruined;  with my sword I will rise against the house of Jeroboam.”

3D Interpretation: The people of Israel were living to their own set of rules. Israel thought its spiritual condition was good, yet God knew it to be corrupt. This became evident when God put the plumb-line in their midst. They were following their own fallible standard, which allowed them to see themselves as righteous when, in fact, they were not.   As you read more of the Book of Amos, notice how God, through Amos, warns the people to stop their transgressions of social injustice to the needy and under-served.

What this means for us today? Today our plumb-line is Christ and His word. It is the perfect standard. Unlike made-made standards, God’s lasts. What is your standard for comparison?

Mark Condra

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