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PUNITIVE REDEMPTION

September 7, 2015

Monday

 

Amos 5:14-15

 

Seek good, and not evil, that ye may live: and so the LORD, the God of hosts, shall be with you, as ye have spoken. Hate the evil, and love the good, and establish judgment in the gate: it may be that the LORD God of hosts will be gracious unto the remnant of Joseph.

 

 

LESSON

 

“Seek good, not evil” becomes “Hate evil and love good.” The structure accents the dichotomy. The good is defined as setting up justice in the gate, the location of village dispute resolution; it was the law-giving place and process in the time of Amos. The promise is contingent; “perhaps,” the fierce divine epithet frames the contingent possibility that this dangerous God might be gracious. The recipient of the act of grace is the “remnant of Joseph.”

Standing for justice in the larger society is part of what it means to be “salt and light” and to follow Christ. Whether the issue is the exploitation of the poor or the killing of the unborn, we as Christians need to take a stand for what is right. That might be through voting, volunteering, giving, social activism, or other means. In the words of another prophet: “Administer true justice; show mercy and compassion to one another.

 

Memory Verse: Numbers 5:6

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