Amos 1:3-8; 1:13-2:3

Open your mind and heart as you read the passage of Scripture aloud and then again quietly to yourself. Listen for God’s word to you.




Amos 1:3-8

Amos’ prophecy dealt with many nations. Amos said Damascus had committed one sin after another. They had come against Israel and God promised to judge Damascus and Syria and completely destroy them. The prophecy about the Syrian exile is mentioned in 2 Kings 16:9 when the Assyrians attacked Syria after King Ahaz of Judah paid them to do so.

Now Amos talked to the Philistine coastal city of Gaza. They had risen against Israel and had delivered their captives to Edom, selling them as slaves. They did not just take the soldiers who had been captured after battle, but the whole population too. As a result, Gaza and other Philistine cities would be judged.

Amos 1:13-2:3

The people of Ammon had slaughtered pregnant women in Israel. Their cities would be destroyed by fire and they too would be punished by means of their king and his family being exiled.

Moab lay south of Judah and would be judged because of their cruelty to Edom and their king.


How do you feel when someone who is well known but whom you don’t know very well greets you by name?


  • How does the concept of the wrathful and vengeful God make you feel? Do you think this is the Old Testament God – or do you believe God does not change? What would you say to someone who said God is only love? Can you see love behind the anger and justice of God? Explain your answer.
  • Where do you see evidence of God moving and caring in the face of suffering? What about the events in Soweto and East London? Can good come out of bad? What do you think?
  • How do you see other people? Do you know the name of the teller in your local supermarket? What about the pump attendant at the garage, or the doctor’s receptionist? Even if you cannot remember names well, do you address them by name when they are wearing name badges? Why/why not?
  • What has this week’s message said to you about seeing other people as individuals who are made in the image of God and are seen and loved by God just as you are, whether they acknowledge Him as Lord or not? How do you see them now with this in mind?
  • What difference would it make – to you and to others – if you learnt and used the names of the people who work or live around you? How would your relationship change with the quiet (or confrontational) neighbour across the road; the lady who cleans your office, the person who collects your rubbish once a week, or the one on duty at the entrance to your complex?
  • ‘Treat others as you want them to treat you’. Would this change the way you interact with anyone? Why/why not?
  • Where do you see injustice in your immediate world? Could God be calling you to act on His behalf as you see this injustice taking place? What action can you take against it? Will you do so? Why/why not?
  • How does the fact that God both sees you and knows you by name make you feel? What makes you respond in this way?
  • How can the group help you with the struggles you have mentioned during this session?


Pray for one another in regard to the issues that have been raised during your discussion time, and in regard to other needs of the group.


Ask a couple of people you see regularly but just greet with a nod for their names and tell them yours. Whether they remember yours or not, make a point of using their names during the week (and beyond). Once you have their names fixed firmly in your mind, choose a couple of others. What difference does it make to your relationship with each one How do you respond to one another once you are on first name terms? Report back to your group.


Amos Chapter 1

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