Tuesday, October 11, 2011

persistence of pride

The Lord GOD has sworn by himself, declares the LORD, the God of hosts: "I abhor the pride of Jacob and hate his strongholds, and I will deliver up the city and all that is in it."
Amos 6:8

The pride of Jacob was manifested in an insane pursuit of leisure and personal pleasure. The people felt secure, but their wealth, gained by exploiting the poor, was a false security. God was going to bring them down. They felt more secure than other nations God had judged (Amos 6:1-2). But their trust in themselves would only hasten their disaster (Amos 6:3).

The luxury had numbed them to reality. They imagined themselves as kings in the land. They bedded down on ivory furniture, feasting on lamb and veal, content to soak in their own entertainment (Amos 6:4-5). They indulged in copious amounts of alcohol and their version of "spa treatments", exalting their own bodies, but refusing to mourn over the nation's spiritual complacency (Amos 6:6). This was a collective calloused conscience that was kept comfortably numb by the "good life". But God was going to sweep away the indifferent attitudes first in the worst of the judgment (Amos 6:7).

God is not impressed with human economic prosperity. It tends to exalt human achievement and fails often to bring about trust in God. That does not mean that wealthy people can't be God followers. But it does mean that the more we have, the easier it is to trust in ourselves. God had to reduce these people down to impoverished exiles before their hearts returned to Him. Incidious wealth will pull the human heart far away from reality! And it is not really riches that does that. It is our pride. And that is the first thing God hates in this context. Pride is the first sin in heaven that began with Lucifer. And it is often the first sin in our hearts as well.

- Posted on an original iPad.
prepare your minds for action...
1 Peter 1:13

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