Wise Christian leaders will find ways to offer encouragement and hope to their team even during a process of correction. Read Amos 9:11-15.
For eight and one half chapters Amos had given warnings of God’s coming judgment to the people of Israel. Amos’ sharp declarations required a response; Israel’s sin had to be dealt with and that meant some very difficult times ahead. But, the book concludes with hope for the future. In the last half of chapter 9, Amos’ words were full of hope, healing and the vision of a positive change that once again would bring God’s blessing. Through Amos’ closing words, God illustrates how much people need both admonishment and affirmation.
Leaders violate a basic principle of God-established fairness when they use their power and influence to allow or practice injustice within their team. Read Amos 5:7-17.
Amos is sometimes called the angry prophet. Often his words had an edge and expressed heated emotion. In chapter five he condemns leaders who fail to provide justice for the people of Israel. The leaders had abandoned morality, taxed the poor for personal gain, took bribes, deprived the people of justice in the courts, and they were so blinded by their own power they didn’t even see their own corruption. The Bible repeatedly states that God hates injustice, especially among leaders who have the power and influence to model it for, and make it a common practice among, all the people.
There will be times when leaders need to make the hard decisions and correct their organization’s direction despite the high cost to the team. Read Amos 4:1-12.
The people of Israel had gone too far. They continually ignored the core values God had established and demanded His people to live by and had no remorse for violating the established standards. Chapter four speaks of their hard hearts and their lack of any desire to return to God. Through Amos God informs the people that even though He is a God of love and mercy, the time has come where He must demonstrate His wrath. From the first words of the chapter there is not doubt of His intent when God identifies the women of Israel as “…cows of Bashan…who oppress the poor and crush the needy and say to their husbands, ‘Bring us some drinks.’” This statement held no promise of a pleasant encounter.
Christian leaders are accountable to God for a higher standard. Read Amos 3:1-2.
Amos reminded the people of Israel that they were God’s chosen people. Along with that great honor came some additional responsibilities. The leaders in Israel had failed to realize that God held them to a higher standard than leaders in other nations. God personally guided the leaders of Israel and told them that Israel must become a nation that modeled His leadership. God’s harsh judgment came because He held Israel’s leaders accountable to be an example to the nations and point them to His greatness for His glory. It is disastrous when leaders give the appearance of accountability to God while denying the real thing.
Leadership is a form of stewardship. Read Amos 1:1-2:16.
Amos was God’s prophet to the Northern Kingdom of Israel for approximately 10 years from 760 B.C. to 750 B. C. Amos was a bit of an unlikely leader for the Northern kingdom. He was a shepherd and, according to 7:14-15, he supplemented his income by taking care of sycamore-fig trees, living in the Southern kingdom of Judah. Unlike some of the prophets, Amos brought no known credentials to his prophetic work other than his claim of a divine call of God.