The Sin of Damascus (Amos 1:2-5)

The Sin of Damascus (Amos 1:2-5)

Amos declares that God’s judgment is coming like a roaring lion. His judgment will cause men to mourn and mountains to melt.

God’s coming judgment on Damascus

Damascus has crossed the line and God’s judgment is coming. Damascus is the capital of Syria and is used here to reference the nation of Syria. Amos makes it very clear that there is nothing that the Syrians can do to avert God’s judgment. There comes a time when God’s judgment will come no matter what we do.

The Sin of Damascus

The greatest sin of Damascus was what they did at Gilead. Gilead was the territory of Israel on the East side of the Jordan river. Hazael defeated them in battle and then slaughtered almost everyone. He took farm instruments that were used for making silage for cattle and ran over men, women, children, and pregnant women, literally shredding them to pieces. This sin was the mistreatment of POW’s, torture, cruelty, murder of innocents and non-combatants, and the decimation of a society. You can read about this event in 2 Kings 8:12 and 2 Kings 13:7.

The decimation of Syria

Because of these heinous sins God is going to burn Hazael and his family to the ground. The city of Damascus will be overrun, and the Syrians will be taken into captivity. This takes place about 25 years after Amos’ prophecy. The fulfillment of God’s judgment is recorded in 2 Kings 16:9.

What it means for us

As Christians we must take Jesus’ command to love our enemies to heart and treat them well. Elisha models this with the Syrian army in 2 Kings 6:8-23. He demands good treatment of POW’s and orders them to be fed and sent home. We as Christians must demand fair treatment for POW’s and take a strong stance against torture and cruel and unusual punishment. We must advocate for the protection of non-combatants and innocent people like women and children. We must call for justice and the protection of human life. Should we take a stand against terrorism? Absolutely. However, when we become cruel and inhumane and advocate the killing of women and children we are no better than the terrorists.

Repent

We must repent for the cruelty and hatred within our own hearts. We must fight for the humane and just treatment of all people. Those who violate God’s Laws should swiftly meet justice in the manner God has prescribed. We must speak out against the injustices within our society and call our nation to repentance. We must seek to have the love of God for our enemies poured out within our hearts. This is the Gospel, when we were God’s enemies He sent His Son to die for us.

Application

Will you run to Jesus for the transformation of life that He gives?

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