I Hate Your Worship - a Research Paper on Amos 5:21-25

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I HATE YOUR WORSHIP
A RESEARCH PAPER ON AMOS 5:21-25

CONTENTS

INTRODUCTION……………………………………………………………………………….2 AN HISTORICAL OVERVIEW OF AMOS…………………………………………………..3
The Funeral Dirge……………………………………………………………………………3
The Judicial System………………………………………………………………………….4
The Heart of Amos’ Message……………………………………………………………….5 HOLY GATHERINGS…..………………………………………………………………………5 SACRIFICIAL OFFERINGS…………………………………………………………………...7
Burnt Offerings………………………………………………………………………………8
Grain Offerings………………………………………………………………………………8
Peace Offerings……………………………………………………………………………….8

SONGS AND INSTRUMENTS…………………………………………………………………9 RIGHTEOUSNESS AND JUSTICE…………………………………………………………..12 CHRISTOLOGICAL EXAMPLES OF JUSTICE…………………………………………..13
Zacchaeus……………………………………………………………………………………13 Samaritan Woman………………………………………………………………………….14
Woman with the Issue of Bleeding………………………………………………………...14
Demon Possessed Man……………………………………………………………………...15

CONCLUSION…………………………………………………………………………………16

ii.

INTRODUCTION
In one of the most well-known speeches in the history of America, civil rights leader Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. purposely quoted the very words that were unshakably delivered 2600 years earlier by the prophet Amos as a call to true worship.[1] The very definition of worship is the reverent honor and homage paid to a god or sacred personage, or to any other object regarded as sacred. However, King’s intentions were not necessarily to get the masses to worship God rather that “justice would roll down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.” This “I Have a Dream” speech was one of many that led to the civil liberties Americans enjoy today; a freedom from the many injustices brought on by the Bible believing and Judeo-Christian God worshipping generations this country was built upon.

Many have never made the connection between worship and justice. Maybe it would be better to say that many have never made the disconnect between worship and song, worship and prayer, or even worship and congregating in the name of the Lord. The truth is that you cannot have one without the other. Worship and justice go hand in hand. There has been a perverted skew regarding man’s willingness to properly interpret God’s desire ever since Adam’s fall.[2] This is not an old thing, not a new thing, but a constant throughout the ages. Contrary to popular belief today, worship is not something that is done between nine and ten o’clock every Sunday morning. This paper will argue that the true worship God desires has nothing to do with music, sacrifice, or even festivities in his name, but everything to do with the lifestyles we live according to our actions toward one another as seen in Amos 5:21-25.

AN HISTORICAL OVERVIEW OF AMOS
Amos was a Judean Sheep-breeder and prophet who delivered his oracles around 755 B.C.[3] During the end of the ninth and beginning of the eight century B.C. a time of peace and prosperity developed in Israel. As God’s people prospered so did the greed to increase prosperity. Merchants were dishonest, bribery was a common practice in the courts of law, the poor and enslaved were oppressed by the rich and powerful minority, and yet religious zeal was at an all-time high. Despite the elaborate ceremonies, abundant offerings, and many festival gatherings, the religion was merely one of formal observances.[4]

The Funeral Dirge
In verses 1-3 of chapter five, Amos uses a classic poetic example of what is referred to as a Leichenlied or funeral dirge to emphasize that the actions of Israel has not only murdered true worship to God, but will also cause destruction and true loss of their wealth, prosperity, comfort, and even their lives through military defeat if they do not heed his words. The dirge, being the chief funeral ceremony in Israel, was a poem of grief over the death of someone close.[5] In verses 4-6 the Lord pleads with Isreal to “Seek Me and live”...
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