I said to vicar Chris on Sunday, “I love the Old Testament lesson (Amos 6:1-7), not a lot of gospel but fun to read.” He preached on the text and afterward I commented, “You found some gospel.”
Where are we able to find good news in this text? If we are to find some gospel grab on to “gospel handles” in the first verse. “Gospel handle” is a term that Prof. Francis Rossow uses. Let me try to demonstrate.
- 1, “Woe to those who are at ease in Zion, and to those who feel secure on the mountain of Samaria…” Take note of two phrases. “At ease,” and “feel secure.”
In Proverbs 1:33 “Whoever listens to me will dwell secure and will be at ease without dread of disaster.” The key to being at ease and secure is listening to the Lord. To that end Jesus invites us, “Come to me all who labor and are heavy laden and I will give you rest. Take my yoke… For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” (Matthew 11:28-30) The author of Hebrews writes in 9:12, “By means of His (Jesus) own blood securing eternal redemption.”
Jesus yoked himself to the heavy burden of our sin. He took upon himself the “woes” which we had earned. He was tempted as we are yet without sin. Therefore, the writer of Hebrews 4:16, “Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” Thus he put far away the day of disaster and the seat of violence. (Amos 6:3)