Amos 3:2 “You only have I known of all the families of the earth; therefore I will punish you for all your iniquities. –ESV
I have heard many people mocking the concept of God’s punishment on nations for embracing iniquity. As it relates to laws enacted and proclamations made in the United States, many have pointed to other nations to say that that nation has embraced the same debauchery as the U.S. many years prior and they do not see any judgement from God.
The Premises Of Punishment
First of all, God’s punishment comes in many forms including giving people over to debauchery itself. Also, I would ask, was that nation ever in covenant with God? Were they established as a Christian nation? In other words, has God known that nation, people group, or person? According to the verse laid out above, the answer to this question is vital to the way God will deal with persistent sin in a nation, people group, or person.
The U.S. was founded a Christian nation. Many dispute this, but if it were not the case, do you think Barack Obama would have felt the need to proclaim that we are no longer a Christian nation when he was president? Because we have been a Christian nation, we, alongside of Israel, are the target of so much hate from around the world. And it is why there is so much chaos, confusion and violence here. We have sinned in many ways as a nation and God’s punishment seems to be brewing.
Granted, He has extended mercies in many ways as well, but we are cautioned in Romans 2:4 not to take advantage of God’s kindness, since it is meant to lead us to repentance. It seems many see God’s kindness as a cue to take a deep breath and sit down for a while. I know that is a great temptation for me many times, whether it is concerning the nation, my community or my personal life.
A Higher Standard
But God has known my nation. God has known my community. And God has known me personally. Because of these things, I know I am held to a high standard and the corporate bodies I am a part of are held to a high standard. We cannot put our hand to the plow in God’s Kingdom, look back later with desiring eyes after sin and expect not to wound the heart of God. He is jealous for our hearts.
If we have tasted and seen that God is good, it is so much more hurtful to the God who loves us if we go astray. It is a personal insult to God if we do so. An extreme ungratefulness despite all He has done for us. So let’s be careful to remain constantly penitent and thankful in our personal lives. This enables us to be effective when interceding for the corporate bodies we are a part of that have become lukewarm or downright evil.