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Amos Part 23 – A Famine of Hearing the Words of the Lord

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A Famine of Hearing the Words of the Lord

Key Verses:  Amos 8:8 – 8:12

We are still discussing the vision of the fruit basket that was the focus of last week’s study.

Amo 8:2 And he said, Amos, what seest thou? And I said, A basket of summer fruit. Then said the LORD unto me, The end is come upon my people of Israel; I will not again pass by them anymore.

After the study, there was a great discussion and email thread that demonstrated the power and wisdom of having a multitude of counselor’s weigh in on a matter (Pro 11:14, 1Th 5:11).  It was confirmed that God’s Elect, being a type of firstfruits are, a second Spring harvest (Pentecost) that follows the Barley harvest earlier in the Spring.

1Co 15:22 For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.

1Co 15:23 But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ’s at his coming.

Every man being saved is “yet by fire” (1Co 3:15) and that was the real meaning of summer as the product of our walk is being judged and measured against the Word (plumbline).  Larry said it best: “The concept of “summer” is connected to those (“summer fruit”) in the first resurrection, is a spiritual word for those who go through fiery (summer = heat) judgement first.”  Every nation, tribe and tongue within us that does not believe and trust in the Lord is having the wrath of God abiding on it.  This is the fire we endure now so we will not be condemned with the rest of mankind later in the lake of fire (1Co 11:31-32).

Joh 3:36 He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.

Attaining the reward of eternal life and being in the first resurrection only comes by bearing the heat of the summer seasons working in the Lord’s vineyard (Mat 20:12).  Our day of the Lord, is our day of judgment and the time is at hand when our works, the fruits of our walk with God are being judged.  Our faith is being tried in this fire (judgment) and whatever is not of faith is being burned up.

Joh 3:18 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

We continue with our new verses for today and see the result of the Lord forsaking Israel for a season in bringing a famine of hearing the commands of Christ unto the land.

Amo 8:8 Shall not the land tremble for this, and every one mourn that dwelleth therein? and it shall rise up wholly as a flood; and it shall be cast out and drowned, as by the flood of Egypt. 

Amo 8:9 And it shall come to pass in that day, saith the Lord GOD, that I will cause the sun to go down at noon, and I will darken the earth in the clear day: 

Amo 8:10 And I will turn your feasts into mourning, and all your songs into lamentation; and I will bring up sackcloth upon all loins, and baldness upon every head; and I will make it as the mourning of an only son, and the end thereof as a bitter day. 

Amo 8:11 Behold, the days come, saith the Lord GOD, that I will send a famine in the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the LORD: 

Amo 8:12 And they shall wander from sea to sea, and from the north even to the east, they shall run to and fro to seek the word of the LORD, and shall not find it. 

Our season of famine is all ordained of the Lord to set us up for Him to come the second time to us without sin.

Joh 16:16 A little while, and ye shall not see me: and again, a little while, and ye shall see me, because I go to the Father.

Heb 9:28 So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation.

The “for this” statement in our first verse links all these consequences described in these verses to the prior transgression of buying and selling from last week’s study.

Amo 8:6 That we may buy the poor for silver, and the needy for a pair of shoes; yea, and sell the refuse of the wheat?

Amo 8:7 The LORD hath sworn by the excellency (arrogance/pride/pomp) of Jacob, surely, I will never forget any of their works.

Our evil works of robbing the poor and shutting up the kingdom of God to the needy are converted into good works by the process of judgment.  The Lord uses evil within us and without us to accomplish good and save every man from his sins.  This is the only way we progress from hearers of the word to doers of the word.

Eph 2:10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.

We see in these verses of Amos, that is the Lord’s purpose to turn us over to the enemy and to devour our flesh and destroy all pride and arrogance.

1Co 5:5 To deliver such a one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.

Our living out these words and events in our appointed times is, was and will be, is not pleasant but we should remember as we are asked to endure this chastening and scourging from our loving Father that is actually the blessing because it is what is brings forth Christ in us.  This is the message of the Good News.

Rev 22:7 Behold, I come quickly: blessed is he that keepeth the sayings of the prophecy of this book.

Eze 36:27 And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them.

The Lord turns the hearts of His people (brings repentance) by using evil to correct and humble us (Jer 2:19).  It is blasphemy to those in orthodoxy for us to speak truth that the Lord is working all things, even the evil, even our very sins in order (Isa 63:17, Isa 45:7, Joh 15:5) to bring about salvation.  To lose confidence in our flesh and to believe only in the Son and the righteousness that is found in Him [grace through faith Eph 2:8]; we have to learn the futility of saving ourselves and know what we are in the flesh.

Mat 9:13 But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.

To know this in Spirit and in truth, our falling away must come first (2Th 2:3).  This must happen before the great and terrible day of the Lord arrives that is saving us and destroying the man of sin little by little.  As the prodigal and immature son who has left His father’s house, we will be brought back to our first love through enduring a spiritual famine.

Luk 15:14 And when he had spent all, there arose a mighty famine in that land; and he began to be in want.

Luk 15:17 And when he came to himself, he said, How many hired servants of my fathers have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger!

Luk 15:18 I will arise and go to my father, and will say unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and before thee,

Our words of Amos focus around this famine in our land.  There is certainly an outward famine coming more and more in this darkening world waxing worse and worse by the day.  Yet these words are first and foremost words that we, God’s Elect, live out now on whom the end of the ages is coming, and they apply inwardly to the kingdom of God (Luk 17:21).  Thus, begins our falling away from our first love as the Lord raises up the river of Egypt to drown us in the lusts of our flesh.

Amo 8:8 Shall not the land tremble for this, and every one mourn that dwelleth therein? and it shall rise up wholly as a flood; and it shall be cast out and drowned, as by the flood of Egypt. 

The Lord is turning us over to the idols of our heart and manifesting the man of sin within us.  Our taking in marriage with the Philistines (the lusts of the flesh) is what brings the occasion (Jdg 14:14) for the Lord to bring the fire of scourging and chastening grace (Heb 12:6).  The harlot that is riding our beast and leading us into spiritual adultery and fornication with false gods of the world and engaging in trade/merchandising of the Lord’s treasures (gold, silver, precious stones) for gain must be judged.

Rev 18:11 And the merchants of the earth shall weep and mourn over her; for no man buyeth their merchandise any more:

We come out of Spiritual Babylon as the seven plagues come that bring death, mourning and famine to the land.

Rev 18:8 Therefore shall her plagues come in one day, death, and mourning, and famine; and she shall be utterly burned with fire: for strong is the Lord God who judgeth her.

We see the phrase “the flood of Egypt” twice in Scripture and both in Amos.   The word translated “flood” is better denoted as a “river” or similar wording.

H2975, ye’ôr   –  Total KJV Occurrences: 65

river, 35

rivers or river’s, 18

flood, 6

brooks, 5

Here is how the ESV as most of the translations show it using the context of a river.

Amo 8:8 ESV Shall not the land tremble on this account, and everyone mourn who dwells in it, and all of it rise like the Nile, and be tossed about and sink again, like the Nile of Egypt?”

The rising up of the river of Egypt and being drowned by the waters is an example of the negative use of waters and rivers and pertains to our being overcome by our beast (Ecc 3:18).

Rev 11:7 And when they shall have finished their testimony, the beast that ascendeth out of the bottomless pit shall make war against them, and shall overcome them, and kill them.

Rev 11:8 And their dead bodies shall lie in the street of the great city, which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where also our Lord was crucified.

A proper foundation is not made for the house of God until the first foundation fails and a new foundation is constructed in the fire of our judgment to withstand the power of the flesh.

Luk 6:49  But he that heareth, and doeth not, is like a man that without a foundation built an house upon the earth; against which the stream did beat vehemently, and immediately it fell; and the ruin of that house was great.

It is only by our trials, the testing of our faith in which we fall down seven times (Pro 24:16) that the new foundation of tried stone is laid within us. Christ is being formed!

Isa 28:16 Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD, Behold, I lay in Zion for a foundation a stone, a tried stone, a precious corner stone, a sure foundation: he that believeth shall not make haste.

Gal 4:19 My little children, of whom I travail in birth again until Christ be formed in you,

Gal 4:20 I desire to be present with you now, and to change my voice; for I stand in doubt of you.

Our baptism with water is followed by our baptism by fire that is testing all things and burning up the works of the flesh (Mat 3:11).

1Co 3:12 Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble;

1Co 3:13 Every man’s work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is.

Reaping a just recompense for our deeds is teaching us righteousness and the lessons of reaping what we sow.

Isa 59:18 According to their deeds, accordingly he will repay, fury to his adversaries, recompence to his enemies; to the islands he will repay recompence.

Isa 59:19 So shall they fear the name of the LORD from the west, and his glory from the rising of the sun. When the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of the LORD shall lift up a standard against him.

Egypt’s river rising up and covering the earth is the same as the swelling up of our bellies.  We either serve God or not.  We cannot serve two masters; a jealous God will not let us serve Him and the mammon of this world.

Php 3:18 (For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ:

Php 3:19 Whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things.)

The coming of spiritual famine follows this overrunning by the river of Egypt.

Amo 8:9 And it shall come to pass in that day, saith the Lord GOD, that I will cause the sun to go down at noon, and I will darken the earth in the clear day: 

This verse is similar to the more well-known passages from Joel 2:30-31 that were also referenced in Peter’s sermon on the day of Pentecost.

Act 2:20 The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before that great and notable day of the Lord come:

Act 2:21 And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved.

Spiritual nourishment or food is the light that is the Christ, so a famine is the same as a period of darkness where we cannot see the light.  Living by every word requires us to experience this darkening of the land.

Jer 4:28 For this shall the earth mourn, and the heavens above be black: because I have spoken it, I have purposed it, and will not repent, neither will I turn back from it.

When the Lord sends strong delusion, and deceives us we do not know we are in this darkened state.  This falling away is not something we are conscious of as we experience it, we only see it looking behind ourselves.

Mat 6:22 The light of the body is the eye: if therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light.

Mat 6:23 But if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness! 

Only the Lord can turn noon day into midnight.  That is just how strong, our strong delusion is before we learn to obey the truth by going through the fire of judgment.

Without the Light of this world (Jesus Christ and His Christ) to guide us, the hearing of the Word, our deeds quickly turn to darkness and we will be overcome which gives the Lord an occasion to bring an end to our flesh.  The revelation of Jesus Christ comes to us inwardly first and will come outwardly to the world suddenly and in a time of great darkness (midnight).   The first-born man of sin shall not inherit the kingdom and must die for the new man to come forth and increase.

1Th 5:2 For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night.

1Th 5:3 For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape.

Exo 11:4 And Moses said, Thus saith the LORD, About midnight will I go out into the midst of Egypt:

Exo 11:5 And all the firstborn in the land of Egypt shall die, from the firstborn of Pharaoh that sitteth upon his throne, even unto the firstborn of the maidservant that is behind the mill; and all the firstborn of beasts.

It is the children of the kingdom of God who must go into darkness and be judged before we can come to the Light.

Mat 8:12 But the children of the kingdom shall be cast out into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.

The “excellency” of Jacob for which the Lord will not forget our works (Amo 8:7) is our arrogance and pride that is being destroyed.

Isa 13:11 And I will punish the world for their evil, and the wicked for their iniquity; and I will cause the arrogancy of the proud to cease, and will lay low the haughtiness of the terrible.

Going into spiritual darkness and enduring a famine of the hearing of the words of Christ and His Christ, bring us to our wits end until we cry unto the Lord for deliverance from bondage to the flesh and the Assyrian armies within us that are used as the sword of the Lord (Psa 17:13).

Amo 8:10 And I will turn your feasts into mourning, and all your songs into lamentation; and I will bring up sackcloth upon all loins, and baldness upon every head; and I will make it as the mourning of an only son, and the end thereof as a bitter day. 

The coming of the Lord is likened to the times of Noah and Lot (Mat 24:38, Luk 17:28) that was defined by eating, drinking, buying, selling and giving in marriage.  These speak to spiritual activity and specifically how we conduct ourselves in the house of God having His Truths.   Feasting speaks of eating and drinking and specifically doing it in an unworthy manner.

1Co 10:21 Ye cannot drink the cup of the Lord, and the cup of devils: ye cannot be partakers of the Lord’s table, and of the table of devils.

The feasting of our man of sin, who is sitting on God’s throne hearing but not doing the Word is coming to an end in this great and bitter (to the flesh) day of the Lord.  We are being humbled and shown we have no covering (the mind of Christ) and are in fact spiritually bald.

1Co 11:6 For if the woman be not covered, let her also be shorn: but if it be a shame for a woman to be shorn or shaven, let her be covered.

The Book of Lamentations comes to mind as we look at the Lord destroying our life in the flesh and causing us to lose everything.  Seeing the shame of our nakedness and the wretchedness of our self-righteousness compared to the Words of Christ which are Spirit and Life.

Lam 2:5 The Lord was as an enemy: he hath swallowed up Israel, he hath swallowed up all her palaces: he hath destroyed his strong holds, and hath increased in the daughter of Judah mourning and lamentation.

The Lord has caused us to commit all these abominations.  He has caused us to err from His ways (Isa 63:17).  This is the way the Lord has devised to save all mankind (2Sa 14:14).

Lam 2:17  The LORD hath done that which he had devised; he hath fulfilled his word that he had commanded in the days of old: he hath thrown down, and hath not pitied: and he hath caused thine enemy to rejoice over thee, he hath set up the horn of thine adversaries.

The occasion has been set and the Lord is now coming with fire to purify our heavens as we progress.  Still, even knowing these truths, it takes a process for us to really believe that the Lord sent the enemy into the gates of Jerusalem.  But what sayeth the Scriptures?

Lam 4:11 The LORD hath accomplished his fury; he hath poured out his fierce anger, and hath kindled a fire in Zion, and it hath devoured the foundations thereof.

Lam 4:12 The kings of the earth, and all the inhabitants of the world, would not have believed that the adversary and the enemy should have entered into the gates of Jerusalem. 

When we see ourselves as the ones who have pierced and crucified our Lord (Rev 1:7), then we mourn and wail for our sins.  This is very necessary for us to give up the flesh and submit to the way of the Lord.  Coming to see ourselves as the chief of sinners and those who crucified our Lord within and in others.

Amo 8:11 Behold, the days come, saith the Lord GOD, that I will send a famine in the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the LORD: 

Jesus Christ, the Word is the Bread of life.  His Bread is actually His Body, which is the meat we must eat to possess age abiding life.  John, chapter 6, has some pivotal verses on the Word being life and the only way to be satisfied.

Joh 6:63 It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life.

Joh 6:35 And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.

Joh 6:53 Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you.

Without hearing His words, we are dead in our trespasses and sins.  But as we have seen, this too is the work of the Lord and part of ALL THINGS being worked for His counsel.  Without the words of life to guide us we are lost.  But fear not, as we have seen it is the Lord’s purpose to turn the hearts of the children back to the Father by going through their Prodigal Son experience.  No sheep elected from the foundation of the world is being lost.

Luk 15:4 What man of you, having an hundred sheep, if he lose one of them, doth not leave the ninety and nine in the wilderness, and go after that which is lost, until he find it?

Luk 15:5 And when he hath found it, he layeth it on his shoulders, rejoicing.

Luk 15:6 And when he cometh home, he calleth together his friends and neighbours, saying unto them, Rejoice with me; for I have found my sheep which was lost.

Luk 15:7 I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance.

All men will be found and brought to repentance for this is the will of God.

2Pe 3:9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.

This period of darkness and falling away are being used for good as it will bring us to our wits end.

Amo 8:12 And they shall wander from sea to sea, and from the north even to the east, they shall run to and fro to seek the word of the LORD, and shall not find it. 

Our deliverance from the world and being separated requires going through hard times.  The times of plenty after we come into the truth and enjoy a season of peace are followed by the seasons of suffering which are the many tribulations we endure to enter into the kingdom of God (Act 14:22).  Those tribulations are living through all seven of the vials of wrath poured out against our old man and our carnal mindsets.

Rev 15:8 And the temple was filled with smoke from the glory of God, and from his power; and no man was able to enter into the temple, till the seven plagues of the seven angels were fulfilled.

Php 1:29 For unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake;

Unable to hear the words of the Lord and being temporarily forsaken of the Lord to accomplish His purposes; we are being led by our natural carnal mind and fleshly instincts.  We follow the ways of the world within and without, and wander to find the living waters again but will not find them.  Going from sea to sea is going from one fleshly carnal thought to the next.  The world will have us run to the east when judgment breaks forth from the north. But to mature in the Lord in our day of the Lord we are learning to go west instead and follow the Son.

Mat 24:27  For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.

We do not find rest when the Lord has purposed to destroy the old man off the face of our earth.

Psa 107:25 For he commandeth, and raiseth the stormy wind, which lifteth up the waves thereof.

Psa 107:26 They mount up to the heaven, they go down again to the depths: their soul is melted because of trouble.

Psa 107:27 They reel to and fro, and stagger like a drunken man, and are at their wits’ end. 

Judgment is a winnowing process of division via a sword.  The Lord is causing all of it and working it for good.  It is by our enduring and overcoming these trials that we come to unity and stop running to and fro in the earth being deceived by men the Lord has put out to deceive the entire world.

Eph 4:13 Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:

Eph 4:14 That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;

Next week Lord willing, we will pick up the final two verses of Chapter 8 before moving on to the fifth vision the Lord gave Amos.  We are nearing the end of the book and the end of the man of sin.

Amo 8:13 In that day shall the fair virgins and young men faint for thirst.

Amo 8:14 They that swear by the sin of Samaria, and say, Thy god, O Dan, liveth; and, The manner of Beersheba liveth; even they shall fall, and never rise up again.

Sincere comments and questions are welcome.  You can also email me directly at peterjwilson56@gmail.com

A Servant In Christ,  PETE

Sincere comments and questions are encouraged!