The passage we read from Amos this week gives you a powerful text and central image to begin this new series (now through July 31) in pre-exilic prophets with a bang: the plumb line.
How the plumb line figures in today’s reading shows the stark difference between the kind of ministry Elijah and Elisha had, and what Amos and Hosea were called to do as prophets. Elijah and Elisha sought to call political and religious institutions of the day back into alignment with God’s righteousness and justice. There was some sense, still, that there was time to repair and restore what had strayed.
As we hear from Amos and Hosea, however, time had run out. The plumb line shows things are too far gone for repair or restoration of the existing institutions and their leaders. Religious and political institutions alike were facing obliteration (Amos 7:9, 11). And the people who survived those horrors would be taken into exile (Amos 7:11, 17).
This is but the beginning of tough words we’ll hear throughout this series, and in the later series in Habakkuk, Haggai, Isaiah, and Jeremiah (October 30 to November 20).
Come and hear the powerful words of the prophets of God. See you Sunday.
Grace and Peace, Pastor Curtis