Exhortation for Morning Prayer
Lessons: Amos 7:1-9, Rev. 1:1-8
In the Bible, a prophet is someone who has been invited into the counsels of God. He is a friend of God like Abraham, like Moses, like Amos who has been granted access to God’s deliberations about the story of human history. Amos deliberated with God about Israel under the reign of Jeroboam. He was a nobody, the son of a sheep herder, but God sent him to the kings and priests in Bethel to call them to repentance. And he wasn’t shy. His prophesying would get him into trouble. But in this passage, we also see that Amos loved Israel. As God brings calamity on Israel for her sins, it is Amos who is pleading with God to relent. John introduces Revelation as a prophesy too, of things that would soon take place in the first century. He’s writing to seven of the first churches, warning them, pleading with them, and explaining the judgments about to come on first century Israel.
It’s striking that John says we have been made kings and priests by Jesus. While it would seem proper to say that John was playing the part of prophet, the implication is that Jesus, in the first instance, is our new prophet. He is our Abraham, our Moses, our new Amos – and we are the kings and priests of a new Israel. And if this is right, Jesus both brings correction and announces the judgments of God, but as John notes, these announcements come in perfect love because He has washed us with his own blood. There are many implications we might draw from this, but this morning remember this: as disciples of Jesus, you are priests and kings. As you go home to your families for the holidays, your primary task is not to be prophets announcing judgments on your home churches or families or friends. Yes, you must be faithful witnesses, but you are servants of Jesus called to simple, faithful obedience to Him. Remember that He is pleading for you and pleading for them with His blood.