Every word that God speaks through the prophets has at its heart relationship. “You only have I known of all the families of the earth.” (Amos 3:1) He says through Amos. This isn’t about incorrect religious observance. It’s not about lack of attendance at the temple or failure to offer the right thing in the right way at the right time. This goes deeper.
The Lord’s complaint is about an entire people whom he has chosen that have walked away from the relationship. The punishment is directed towards Israel because they have been faithless in this great gift of relationship with God. God has loved them, chosen them, spoken to them – and they have walked away, they have sought for something more, something else when there is nothing more, nothing else
One of the first things to go when a relationship breaks down is communication, and yet God is not only willing to communicate, but he is determined to communicate: to speak truth in love to his people, no matter how faithless they are.
Before the punchline of verses 7 and 8 God, speaking through Amos presents a series of picture questions. The answer to each is an obvious and resounding No!
The punchline is this: Does God do anything without telling us? No! From the very beginning of this relationship between God and his people he has graciously spoken about what he has done, is doing and will do. None of it should come as a surprise!
“The LORD God does nothing without revealing his secret to his servants the prophets.” (Amos 3:7)
The whole of Scripture is God telling a faithless people what he is doing. It is God revealing his secrets so that we know why we are here, who we are here for, and what the relationship should be all about. No matter how far away we have turned, God is still speaking, still keeping the lines of communication open, always waiting for a ‘return’.
“The LORD has spoken; who can but prophesy?” (Amos 3:8)
If we are listening, truly listening, then whatever goes in has got to come out again. Expect to hear from God; anticipate passing it on!