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Bible Famines. Genesis 12:10: “ And there was a famine in the land…” Genesis 41:27: “ seven years of famine ..” Ruth 1:1, “ there was a famine in the land .” 2 Samuel 21:1 “ there was a famine in the days of David three years ..” 2 Kings 6:25: “ there was a great famine in Samaria..”

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bible famines
Bible Famines

Genesis 12:10: “And there was a famine in the land…”

Genesis 41:27: “seven years of famine..”

Ruth 1:1, “there was a famine in the land.”

2 Samuel 21:1 “there was a famine in the days of David three years..”

2 Kings 6:25: “there was a great famine in Samaria..”

- Note the Severity of that famine! Vs. 25-29.

amos 8 11 12
Amos 8:11-12
  • V. 11: “Behold, the days come saith the Lord God, that I will send a famine in the land, Not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, But of hearing the words of the Lord:
  • V. 12: “And they shall wander from sea to sea, and from the north even to the east, They shall run to and fro to seek the word of the Lord, and shall not find it.”
regarding this famine
Regarding this Famine:
  • It was still in the future, or “the days” which then were still to “come.”
  • God was sending this famine; He said “I will send a famine in the land.”
  • It would not be a “famine of bread, nor a thirst for water,” v. 11.
  • It would be a famine “of hearing the words of the Lord.”
background of the text
Background of the text:
  • These words were spoken by Amos
  • Amos a prophet during the “days of Uzziah king of Judah, and the days of Jeroboam…king of Israel,” Amos 1:1.
    • 41 year reign, 2 Kings 14:23.
    • Materially prosperous, militarily strong, but spiritually bankrupt!
  • Amos was from Tekoa, Amos 1:1; his message primarily to Israel, 2:6-9:15.
immediate background
Immediate Background
  • God showed Amos “a basket of summer fruit,” signifying that “the end is come upon…Israel,” 8:1-2.
  • “The Songs of the Temple” would be turned into “howling,” 8:3.
why was god declaring the end of israel
Why Was God Declaring“the end of Israel?”
  • They took unfair advantage of the needy, Amos 8:4.
  • They begrudged the time spent in religious observances, 8:5-6.
  • Dishonest business dealings, 8:5-6.
  • Idolatry, 8:14; cf. I Kings 12:27-30.
  • Thus God said “I will send a famine in the land,” Amos 8:11.
facts about this famine
Facts About this Famine:
  • It was not a “famine of bread, nor a thirst for water,” Amos 8:11.
  • It was a famine “of hearing the words of the Lord,” Amos 8:11.
    • The famine would occur as a result of the people not esteeming the word of God!
  • This famine would bring disaster!
the disaster described
The Disaster Described:
  • The people would “wander from sea to sea, and from the north even to the east; they shall run to and fro to seek the word of the Lord, and shall not find it,” 8:12.
    • “Wander” literally means to “reel.”
    • The people perplexed, confused, bewildered, having no idea of what’s happening; lacking divine instruction in what to do!
such a famine occurred
Such a Famine Occurred!
  • The Northern Kingdom was taken away into Assyrian Captivity, 2 Kings 17:6-7.
  • Later this was followed by the years of silence, the inter testament period when God sent no prophets, some 400 years of divine silence!
  • Fortunately, that silence was broken by the sending of John, Jesus, apostles!
application a spiritual famine exists today
Application: A Spiritual Famine Exists today!
  • America, as a nation, is much like Israel in the time of Amos! The same sins that plagued Israel now plague our nation!
  • Things that will destroy us: “politics without principle, pleasure without conscience; wealth without work; knowledge without character; business without morality; science without humanity; and worship without sacrifice.”
evidence of a famine of hearing the words of god
Evidence of a “famine of hearing the words” of God:
  • The Bible is virtually removed from the class room. Cf. Prov. 14:34.
  • More and more children reared (?) without any Bible instruction.
  • Efforts being made to label portions of the Bible as “hate speech.”
    • Note:”When it becomes unlawful to preach the whole counsel of God I will become an outlaw!”
further evidence in various denominations
Further Evidence – in various Denominations:
  • The Bible is often virtually ignored!
  • The Bible replaced by creed books, manuals, catechisms, disciplines, etc.
  • The “saving gospel” has largely been replaced by the social gospel of men. People more concerned about what feels good, what they like, what pleases them, etc. than what God has to say!
further evidence in many churches of christ
Further Evidence – in many “Churches of Christ”
  • Preachers ignoring what the Bible says on Marriage, Divorce, Social Drinking.
  • “Unity in Diversity” replacing “the unity of the Spirit.”
  • “The social gospel” being pursued.
  • Cutting back on the times of assembly.
  • Shortening length of sermons, meetings, etc.
  • Result: There is “a famine of hearing the word of God!”
a special plea
A Special Plea:
  • We – You and I – can help reverse the trend! We must take a stand, I Timothy 6:12. We must be Christians – in reality; not in name only! We must love the word of God, Psalm 119:127; we must “hate every false way,” Psalm 119:128. We must “hear” the word, Romans 10:17.
how must we hear the word of god
How Must We Hear the Word of God?

Listen carefully, Mark 4:24; Luke 8:18.

Hear in order to absorb the message, Psalm 119:130.

Hear with a trusting heart, Psalm 119:89, 105.

Hear with an honest and good heart, Luke 8:15.

Hear with an obedient heart, John 7:17.

  • The World Health Organization estimates that approximately 4,000,000 people die each year of starvation.
  • Tragically, in our own land filled with Bibles, millions are dying each day of spiritual starvation!
  • Question: Are you Spiritually Dead?
  • If So, You can be made Alive Today!