Opposition to Amos’s Prophecy

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Amos 7:1-17, Isaiah 40:6-8, 2 Timothy 4:1-5

There’s a quiet battle going on in my house. As my middle son inches toward standing at six feet, he really longs to “beat” my oldest, who stands at 6’2”. The lines we’ve traced on the white doorway trim in between our kitchen and family room announce the progress in this battle.

I appreciate the objectivity of that door frame. We dutifully measure and, without comment, allow the marks on the trim to speak their truth—their pronouncement is clear.

In today’s passage, I’m reminded of the stalwart metric of that penciled-in door frame. But first, a confession: I don’t know about you, but I can catch myself categorizing God’s attributes. Without realizing it, I might see the God of love as positive and good while the God of justice feels negative and maybe scary.These verses show a collision of His love and justice, nestled in neighboring lines on the page. As God showed Amos his judgment for Israel’s wicked ways—first a vision of destruction by locusts and then of devastation by fire—Amos begged for forgiveness for God’s people. God relented. Twice. Even as His people rebelled, His faithful love showed.

He chose instead a measure of judgment, different but not unlike our white-trimmed kitchen door frame. He places a plumb line as a clear metric of Israel’s growth toward or away from God. The hitch is that the plumb line stays while God departs (Amos 7:8). The NKJV translates the same verse, “He will no longer pass by.” What’s worse? Enduring calamity and destruction as a consequence, or hearing God will turn His back completely? 

But God already knew what would happen next: Amaziah, the priest of Bethel, ignored Amos’s offered words. This supposed man of God opposes God and chooses his king. It’s heartbreaking. But it’s in Amos’s response to the priest’s threats where we find encouragement.

So Amos answered Amaziah, “I was not a prophet or the son of a prophet; rather, I was a herdsman, and I took care of sycamore figs. But the LORD took me from following the flock and said to me, ‘Go, prophesy to my people Israel.’” 
—Amos 7:14–15

Amos’s life was sheep and figs, yet he was willing to stop following the flocks to follow the Lord. Even as Israel turned, Amos stood tall against God’s plumb line, delivering His Word. No more than twenty years later, the attacks in this region began, with total ruin complete within forty years.

God’s plans always stand. His Word always remains.

You know, Amos wasn’t the first man God sent from the fields to share His Word, nor would he be the last. Soon He would send the Word to us all, another Shepherd. Our Savior, our plumb line, our friend.

May we hear when He speaks. May we go when He asks.

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39 thoughts on "Opposition to Amos’s Prophecy"

  1. Megan Russell says:

    May I hear when He speaks. May I go when He asks.

  2. Terri Baldwin says:

    God’s word is a plumb line of faith which must be upheld. It is not a political doctrine, not a justification for control, or a means to dictate how others should live.

  3. Terri Baldwin says:

    The great prophet Amos was given a vision of a plumb line which would become the symbol of the standard by which God’s people would need to live. It represents a standard by which the faithful need to live, and a measure from which divine judgment is gauged.

  4. Victoria E says:

    Amen Brooke P. Loved those verses especially. Heidi, praying for your passport and your trip, the Lord will make a way of it is His will! Ladies I also need prayer- I’ve been promoted at my job and have my first big conference as the lead for my team. Please pray for wisdom and strength and most of all that our work would help patients (I work in pharmaceutical industry)

  5. Claire B says:


  6. Indiana Elaine says:

    “For a time is coming when people will no longer listen to sound and wholesome teaching. They will follow their own desires and will look for teachers who will tell them whatever their itching ears want to hear.”
    ‭‭2 Timothy‬ ‭4:3‬ ‭NLT. We just talked about this in our Bible study today. We truly are living in a post Christian era. Sarah D – congratulations on your offer. May God guide your decision. Rhonda J. I have a husband who does the same thing. I think it is getting worse with age. I can just ask a question and it sets him off. After 50+ years of marriage, I have learned to walk away and take the matter to God. Silence is worse for him than arguing. I plead with God to make him the man he should be and to change his heart. I think it is rooted in a domineering father. My husband would never consider counseling so I take him to the counselor who knows his heart. ‬‬

  7. Traci Gendron says:

    2 Timothy 4:3 & 5
    For The time will come when people will not tolerate sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, will multiply teachers for themselves because they have an itch to hear what they want to hear.
    But as for you, exercise self-control in everything, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.

    May we hear when He speaks and may we go when He asks.
    SEARCHING – I have been that person as well. I so so badly want to be on the “right” side of things. To be humble, forgiving, nonjudgemental, without pride. It is impossible without God in my life, yet I still mess up.

  8. Mercy says:

    Happy Wednesday ladies, I am back from our short trip to a small quiet nearby scenic town. I thought of you all, and I gave praise to God when I got to be in front of a magnificent mountain by a lake side. It was so serene yet grand and breathtaking, just like our God. Sometimes big rain clouds would roll in, so dark and yet I remembered a verse that said God also dwells in the dark cloud. Little things of the trip have comforted me and pointed me to His presence. I really don’t feel these pointers as much when in the city with many distractions; His presence is most clear when I am excluded to a quiet place. Thank you so much for your prayers for our trip. The reading today reminds me of how God repents, the KJV version I read uses the word “repent”. Concordance says “repent” means: to be sorry, to be moved to pity, have compassion; to comfort, to console; to ease oneself. This reminds me of the similar instance of Moses when he asked God to repent from the wrath to kill them all in the wilderness (Exodus 32:14). Amos and Moses both acted as intercessors here, asking God for mercy, and God honoured their pleadings. This encourages me to be an intercessor through prayers for my unsaved loved ones, that their sins won’t lead to death. It’s really hard but I told myself to be patient (long suffering) in prayers. And yet, how much more that our wonderful savior Jesus is our intercessor at the right hand of God (Romans 8:34)? We are truly covered by His intercession. @Sharon Jersey Girl: amen to what you said today, pain is the fear to preach the gospel in full, the gospel will surely bring separation. Lifting our sisters in prayers (I am praying along the postings of our prayerful she’s and will be catching up in past few days). May God’s strength be with us so we can preach the word in season and out of season, correct, rebuke and encourage. Many nowadays church don’t correct or rebuke anymore, they just encourage only. May we obey the gospel in full. Be blessed dear sisters.

  9. AG says:

    Lord help me to be more like Amos. How brave he was to stand strong despite all those who turned from God. I pray to grow my faith into a faith like his! It can be so hard in todays world. Sending prayers for each request and joy!

  10. Jennifer Anapol says:

    I pray that I would hold tightly to God’s truth in a world that doesn’t seem to know what truth is. It’s interesting how people in today’s world think they can make their own truth. I guess this concept has been happening for a while.

  11. Kimberly Z says:

    Off! Ahh that could really ruin my day but I won’t let it! Happy Wednesday ladies. Praying for you all.

  12. Kimberly Z says:

    @Rhonda J. Praying your husband and the outbursts! Praying you’ll find a solution to the situation! @Sarah D. So happy for you on your offer! I know this is a great step in the right direction! Praying for all of you today! I got in an annoying fender bender this morning where the person drove off

  13. Kimberly Z says:

    @Rhonda J. Praying your husband and the outbursts! Praying you’ll find a solution to the situation! @Sarah D. So

  14. Teresa Donley says:

    @Rhonda J. I’m praying for you and your husband. May God speak to your husband about how a husband is to love his wife – as Christ loved the church and died for us. May he be able to turn to God and hear His voice when he is tempted to lose his temper. And may you seek Gods strength, and patience to keep speaking Gods Word in your relationship. May God give you a spirit of peace, even in the midst of the storm.

  15. Erica Chiarelli says:

    Hallelujah that even though we may see God’s justice and discipline as harsh or scary or even mean, it’s done in and only with love! All of it is for our benefit and growth and healing and protection!

  16. Michelle Patire says:

    @Sharon – congratulations!! That is amazing! Also, I hear you. There has to be a boldness of the spirit which requires constant abiding and obedience to produce. May the Lord grow you and your husband’s boldness.

    @Heidi- so glad the Lord is using this lake time to reset your body and rest in Him. May He bring you to full restoration and give you strength to do the next big thing. I think of Elijah when he needed to rest and eat before his 40 day journey. God is doing a new thing and the enemy is mad- but you have overcome by the blood of the lamb and the Word of your testimony!! Believe that and walk in it, friend! Prayers for you and your family :)

    @Rhonda J- thank you for sharing your heart about your marriage. It is good to bring things into the light in this way. May He give wisdom on how to love your husband and may His spirit produce the change in both of you that is necessary. God heal them and help them, in Jesus’s name.

    Thank you for your continued prayers :) I so appreciate it.

  17. Heidi says:

    CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!!!! CONFETTI FLYING!!!! That is so amazing I hope you can take time to celebrate your achievement!!!!!! ❤️❤️❤️

  18. Brooke P says:

    4 They will turn away from hearing the truth and will turn aside to myths. 5 But as for you, exercise self-control in everything, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry. – 2 Timothy 4:4-5

  19. Sharon, Jersey Girl says:

    @ Heidi I just saw your post – praying that God will “move the mountains” and you get your passports in plenty of time! May His will be done!

    Also I have a praise — I learned on Saturday that I am now officially a certified DONA postpartum doula, after 2 years of preparing! Thank you, Thank you Lord!

  20. Sharon, Jersey Girl says:

    Amaziah the priest chose his king over his God. How sad. But how often do we do the very same thing? Amos preached the word without letting anything hinder him from proclaiming the message the LORD had spoken. He was bold and brave and let nothing stop him – oh to be more like Amos! He obediently spoke the truth with no worry of the consequences he might suffer.

    This past Sunday my husband and I were discussing the topic of why it seems so hard to witness to the lost. If we love Jesus so much, why aren’t we telling everyone?! He mentioned a book he was reading that addressed this very thing. The answer seems to be because we are afraid of the pain. The pain of ridicule, mocking, losing friendships that we’ve taken so long to build, having our family turn against us. No one likes pain and if we can avoid it, we usually choose to do so. My prayer is that I can get past the fear, openly and boldly proclaim the saving gospel of Jesus Christ. Lord, please – help me to be bold to share your word, my faith, the testimony of You present in my life, and praise Your name & Your works in the presence of the lost around me. I can only do it with Your help, in Your strength. Empower me with Your Holy Spirit. In Jesus name.

    @Sarah D – congratulations on your new position!
    @Michelle Patire – praying for your family and for you living in the midst of it all.
    @Katie L – continuing to pray for you court proceedings, may God rule in your favor!
    @Theresa – praying for your husbands upcoming trip, and that his passport comes in time!
    @Rhonda J – praying for you as you experience your husbands outbursts – may God give you patience and endurance when they are happening, and for him. It sounds like there is something troubling him deep within. Has he ever considered counseling to try and get to the root cause of it, and would you feel comfortable bringing the subject up to him?

  21. Heidi says:

    He clearly defines His standards AND He measures the exact amount of grace and mercy – remeasured each morning – that He already knows we each will need EVERY.SINGLE.DAY. He empowers us in our humanity and is merciful when we fail.

    We’ve moved out of the VRBO and have been spending the last few days at our annual lake-weekend releasing the season before and embracing the season to come. We have done it with our family for a decade now and while so much in our lives have been constant unknown and unexpected – a redefining of “normal” almost on a daily basis – walking into the familiarity and routine of our lake-time provided an automatic “reset” that neither Ryan or myself had expected. I kept finding myself in little spells of crying as I realized my brain and body were slowly releasing the stress and tension that had been building for the previous couple of months. I was suddenly made so acutely aware of how many times that word “normal” had been defined, redefined, again, again, side-stepping from what we were familiar with to such a degree I didn’t even recognize it anymore. And to be so quickly thrown back into “normal” was the biggest eye-opener for both Ryan and I. And hear me- I’m so grateful that God equipped us to do it because in the place we have been, there was a NEED to redefine and step out of comfort and embrace unknown and different. It was a gracious gift He gave us to be able to do it. Just- being back in “typical normal” was such a great comfort and sense of peace. I have a hard time even really explaining it! ;)

    We are now at my parent’s home (yay they have room for us!) on the last days of trying to prep for this European journey that we still feel God is leading us towards – the chance for us and our 3 little people to experience Him in a whole new context and see His movement and presence in a new way from their churches and serving opportunities, to the local communities and ways of life. AND- Ryan and I both feel like there has been significant spiritual attack the closer we get to it. And I do not use that term lightly to define difficulty or hardship. Even our passport issues- ya’ll we still don’t have them. The only date we can get to meet in person is the day we are supposed to fly out. We call and call and try to get appointments where others have cancelled and day after day the only day offered? Our travel day. If God really wants this to happen and invite us on this journey, He is going to have to do SOMETHING and I don’t know what. We are trying our best to just do the things we can and trust Him with what He’s planning. What else can you do really??? ;)

    Keep ya’ll posted… Pray each of you experience something new and fresh with Him today.

  22. Dorothy says:

    Christ is my one and only.

    Thank You Lord God for sending Your Son to die for my sins. Amen

    Be blessed and be a shepherdess to all those around you sisters!!!!

  23. Cheryl Blow says:

    May I keep God’s plumb line in mind as I go throughout my day. Seeking what He desires not my desires.

  24. Brandi says:

    As I was reading our verses this morning I couldn’t help but see the correlation between then and now. A people going their own way, calling evil good. I asked “Father why are you allowing this evil?” His answer “Why are you?” Then I read our verses in 2 Timothy – confirmation and directions. . . Thank You Father for speaking. Help me see clearly the opportunities You place in my path today to overcome evil with good. In the Mighty Name of Yeshua I pray. Amen

    Love you guys! Don’t often comment but here with you and praying for each of my sisters in Christ!

  25. Linda J says:


  26. Ashley G says:

    I love the visual of the plumb line. Of course we’re are always bouncing back and forth from the wall as we sin and repent, but that weight, our faith and God’s Grace, keep pulling us back closer to Him. We never stay too far away from the wall. Good works are not what pulling us plumb, nor burnt offerings, nor pride, etc. But those good works are within us naturally when we are plumb. “Heavenly Father, help me be a light to others. Like a weight to pull someone nearer to plumb, that they may know you and love you. May we all remember that your Word keeps us plumb. May heavenly things interrupt earthly things. Your kingdom come, already and not yet, on earth as it is in heaven. Amen & AMEN.”

  27. Rhonda J. says:

    This really hits the nail on the head…from HRT today.

    “Yet like Amaziah, we, too, are often tempted to shut out the word of the Lord when it challenges our sin and brokenness. We quickly shut out those who, in love, call out our cycles of brokenness. In our current climate, we associate love with affirmation; anything else we consider a failure to love. But love also tells the truth; maturity is learning to heed those voices that speak out against our perpetual patterns of sin.

    And just as we are called to heed those voices, we too must learn to speak truth within our communities, calling out the injustice we see and the patterns of sin that wound and harm those who cannot speak out for themselves. Only when we do that will we truly learn to love our neighbor, speaking the truth in love for the benefit of the body.”
    – by Ryan Diaz

    “we are tempted to shut out the word of the Lord WHEN IT CHALLENGES OUR sin and brokenness.” And that comes back to that Pride we talked about yesterday! Lord, may we stay in your word, face our brokenness, the need EVERY day for your manna and Holy Spirit to work in our lives, repenting daily.

    I am struggling still with my husband’s temper tantrums (mood swings) that seem to happen all the time. I want to love him in this issue but yet if he doesn’t recognize it and how harmful it is to our relationship, I”m not sure how it is going to change. He loves me to death mostly, then blows a gasket at the smallest things, and then shoves his accusations at me. I used to argue back, but that gets nowhere, I tried to respond with tenderness, yet feel prideful that I shouldn’t fold to his anger and “take it.” I keep praying that this, that has been happening for years, changes. (he used to apologize after a couple of days of standoff behavior, now not really. Can you my friends, prayer warriors pray for me to know how to handle this, or that changes will come about with the Spirit working from within him. He is my bestie when it’s good, but the weekly mood swings is tiring. (Sorry to lay it out, but it is consuming me) :/

  28. Cee Gee says:

    MARNIE HAMMER – From another boy mama : 44, 41, 32! Thank you for this insightful and challenging devo! I look forward to seeing more of your work!

    I was reminded today that the plumb line does not operate with a magnet attached ( makes sense!). That got me to thinking if the plumb line I am using has a magnet on the end and what is it drawing me towards as it draws me potentially away from God. I pray that isn’t the case!

    FROM GOT QUESTIONS dot org: “The term plumb line is used in Scripture in several contexts. The Lord pictures Himself as a builder in Isaiah 28: “See, I lay a stone in Zion, a tested stone, a precious cornerstone for a sure foundation” (Isaiah 28:16). This is a promise of an unshakeable kingdom, with the Messiah in charge. Jesus Christ is the “precious cornerstone” (see Mark 12:10; Acts 4:11; Romans 9:33; 1 Peter 2:6). As the Lord builds His kingdom, He will ensure it is perfect in every way: “I will make justice the measuring line and righteousness the plumb line” (Isaiah 28:17). There will be no crookedness/sin in the kingdom of Christ.

    … God’s moral law is the plumb line against which we determine right and wrong (John 17:17). Just as a carpenter’s plumb line is not subject to the opinions or the frustration of the worker, so God’s moral standards are not subject to the opinions of man. Wise people are those who line up their lives according to God’s plumb line rather than trying to move it to satisfy their own agendas.”

    SEARCHING – you’re welcome! Love what you shared! I, too, have used a plumb line a few times in helping my husband with projects. It certainly simplifies and clarifies things!

    THERESA – Joining in prayer for you and your husband/ the trip, etc.!

    KAREN ELIZABETH – I love that t-shirt idea! I plan on mentioning that to our pastor!

    AZ WALKER – prayers for your daughter!

    MICHELLE PATIRE- prayers for you and your mom and your sibs!

  29. AZ Walker says:

    I am so happy about the news of a job offer for Sarah D and I am praying for you and your decisions. Praying for Theresa’s husband’s trip and passport and other requests here and always for our loved ones to come to know the Lord. I tried to be a light for a friend I stayed with last weekend and I pray for her to have peace in the Lord. Please keep my daughter’s safety in your prayers with all her trips across our state this summer for her school hours.

  30. Michelle Patire says:

    Dang. 2 Timothy preaching to my heart. When God commands us to speak His word, we ought not hold back. Amos is like, “Hey man, I didn’t sign up to be a prophet. It wasn’t in my family line. I was a shepherd and tended to my figs, yet God sent me here. So here I am and by the looks of it, your future isn’t so bright either.” The Michelle paraphrase xD

    But seriously. This is preaching to me. I’m still at my family’s house three years later, no signs I am leaving in the near future. God is telling me to hold a standard for my family (including my parents) to observe. To live with integrity, to be honest, consistent, and live by His Spirit. It is not easy to be an example in a household that isn’t submissive to truth. Thankful for my mother who knows Jesus, but man, it truly is long-suffering that I have learned and continue to. Only a taste of what God experiences with me! I was not so different in my teenage years and early twenties, trying to live out my own evil desires and was so confused of who God was. Lol. Here I go again with my lengthy posts…

    @Sarah D- God is good. It’s so amazing to watch your journey and see the ways God stretches you and guides you. Blessings over your “yes” as you continue to follow Him!

    @Theresa- continued prayers for your husband. I used to work in coffee (not as a roaster, but I had coworkers who owned a company) so my heart goes out to him and your family. God will provide where He guides. God bless you and your family :)

    Love you Shes. It’s hard for me to keep up with all the comments lately, but took time to read them from yesterday… Still here daily, as we journey together <3

  31. Danielle B says:

    As many other She’s have commented the plum line stands out to me. The guide for His people. How often do I use it as my guide? What struck me as well is that God departed from them. I can’t imagine a day without Him. How bleak for the Israelites!

  32. Theresa says:

    The imagery of God setting the plumb line and then walking away is really sticking with me this morning. A plumb line gives a very clear image of whether something is straight or not. There is no need to question of the line is true. It is. Gods instruction to his people through Amos was also very clear and yet they chose to ignore it. May I choose my steps by the true plumb line and not make truth more complicated than it is.

    SARAH D- so happy to hear about the preschool teacher job offer! Praying that God gives you clear direction and peace as you make your final decision.

    KATIE L- praying for your family

    VICTORIA E- it’s been good to see you back here

    Thank you for the prayers for my husband’s trip to Africa. We learned yesterday that his departure date is being moved up by a week so we will definitely need God to come through in all the details!

  33. Allison Bentley says:

    This verse gave me comfort. 3 For the time will come when people will not tolerate sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, will multiply teachers for themselves because they have an itch to hear what they want to hear. 5 But as for you, exercise self-control in everything, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry. – 2 Timothy 4:3,5. With everything happening in the world today I am reminded I can only control my heart, my actions and who I pursue! Lord thank you for Your continued forgiveness and I as that you continue to open my eyes and ears so I may exercise self control, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, and fulfill your ministry!

  34. Karyn Johnson says:


  35. Aimee D-R says:

    Jesus, Word of God, our plumb line. Thank You for making a way. Amen

  36. Searching says:

    Amos lived in obedience to God, Amaziah lived in defiance of God. Where am I living? Is God my plumb line?
    I grew up with my dad using a plumb line to build many things. Nothing grand, but even a shed or doghouse needs to be built with straight lines for strength and durability. In doing a little digging on plumb lines this morning, a couple of things stood out. Correctly used, a plumb line is a true, vertical reference and must always swing freely with a plumb weight made of non magnetic material – do I choose God in my freedom or have I replaced my plumb weight with something other than God and His word, so that I am drawn away from Him instead of living in line with Him? And something that was crazy to me – Merriam-Webster states that the first known use of plumb line was in the 15th century! Um, Amos and I beg to differ.

    And as Ecclesiastes reminds us, there is nothing new under the sun. 2 Timothy 4:3-4 speaks of today the same as when it was written –
    3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; 4 and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables. NKJV

    Reading through yesterday’s admissions of “at least I don’t do …” was convicting. Pride is a sneaky, dangerous thing and when you add in judgment along with some self righteousness “well if that were me, I would have done this instead of that and wouldn’t have had their problem” – oh my, that has been me :/ Lord, please guide me.

    KAREN ELIZABETH – the Cross as our plumb line ❤️

    SARAH D – congrats on offer, praying for wisdom in your job decision
    LEHUA K – good to see you here
    THERESA – what a cool job! praying for a smooth passport renewal for your husband
    CEE GEE – thank you for sharing from The Message yesterday – that language was attention getting
    KATIE L – praying

  37. Karen Elizabeth says:

    Just yesterday, one of my home care clients was wearing a t-shirt that said Amos Tribe. Sounds like her church was separated into “tribes” (small groups) with minor prophets as the names of each tribe. The shirt showed a plumb line and a cross. How fitting. We measure our rightness with God by the plumb line of the cross. Not what we’ve done, but what Jesus did for us. He lived the perfect example of how to live right (plumb, straight) in line with God’s will.

  38. Kelly (NEO) says:


    Thanks be to God that I am found in Jesus, my plumb line.

    Congratulations SARAH D

    MERCY – praying for safe travels and a fun time away

    THERESA – praying the Lord will give you and your husband peace that all arrangements will fall into place for the trip to Zimbabwe

  39. Colleen DeVeau says:

    He has given us a standard by which to measure our lives, Himself. Father, help us to be worthy, to stand tall and upright next to, shadowed by You, not in our own strength but Yours.