It is hard to imagine a point of total collapse. What we see in this passage is Amos going from speech to sight. He is now telling Israel the visions that he has received from God. The visions in short depict an inescapable judgement on Israel. We have seen a similar scenario before with the Jonah. The difference is very clear. Jonah wanted wrath to befall the people of Nineveh; Amos was different. He was pleading that God would show mercy.
God’s response is the example of the plumb line. A plumb line is a string with a weight fastened to the end of it. When the string is placed next to a wall and the weight can hang freely, it will become very apparent whether the wall is perfectly vertical or not. If the wall is not vertical it will eventually get worst and worst until there is a total collapse. When Amos placed the plumb line, which was the Torah, against the wall of the Israelites it became very clear that they were so far out of true vertical that collapse could not be prevented.
Israel had become hardened in sin. Amos saw this and no longer asks God to relent. We as believers should really look at this example. We have our own plumb line, the Word of God. The example of Jesus is written for us to line up with. We need to regularly inspect ourselves to see if we are remaining vertical. Sin causes a lean in the wall and can lead to a total collapse.
This is another beautiful thing about grace. When we see the lean happening God gives us grace as followers of Jesus. Forgiveness through grace is our wall repair. We should still be constant in checking our plumb line and making adjustments as needed to keep vertical.
Will you take time to inspect the wall that is your life? Is it leaning because of sin? Are you on the brink of total collapse? Will you accept the grace that is available through Jesus today? Will you stay vertical?
By: Dakota Gragg — Student Ministry Associate