What is the significance of Amos 7:1–6?
The Lord revealed a judgment he was planning to bring on Israel to Amos in a vision. Amos prayed “O Lord God, forgive, I beg you!” (vs. 2). Scripture declares that, “The Lord relented concerning this; ‘It shall not be,’ said the Lord” (vs. 3). The Lord then showed Amos another fierce judgment he was planning against Israel. Amos again intercedes, “O Lord God, cease, I beg you!” (vs. 5). Again Scripture says, “The Lord relented concerning this” (vs. 6).
Does this passage accurately describe God’s interaction with Amos? Did God really plan to bring about these two judgments against Israel, only to change his mind in response to Amos’ prayer? If so, God could not have been all the while certain he wouldn’t bring about these judgments. If God eternally knew he would never unleash these two judgments, we can’t help but get the impression that he was toying with Amos in a sort of manipulative charade for no real purpose. Nothing was really changed as a result of this interaction. If we believe God is above such Machiavellian antics, and if we believe that Scripture should be taken at face value, I do not see how we can avoid concluding that the classical view of the future is inaccurate.
Image by Lori Greig via Flickr Yesterday, we posted about how Messianic prophesies are understood in the open view of the future. Today, this post will look at prophesies that are not fulfilled in the way predicted and what that can tell us about the open view of the future. In John Goldingay’s excellent multi-volume work, Old…
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The Lord asks, “How long will they [Israel] be incapable of innocence?” The Lord’s continual striving with Israel regarding their lack of innocence suggests that this question was not merely rhetorical. If God knows the future to be eternally settled, however, he could not in earnest ask this (or any other) question about the future.…
Well, my dear friend Frank Viola has been spouting off again about how my “logic will be shredded, excoriated, and turned into confetti before a watching world” when we host our debate on Open Theism this fall. I’m not too worried though, since Frank studied the art of debate in the clinic featured in the…
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