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Amos 1:11-12 - Homilies By J.r. Thomson

A brother's faithlessness and injustice.

If Tyre was doubly blamable because, being an ally, she turned against Israel, much more deserving of censure was Edom, inasmuch as Edom was near akin to Israel, and yet was guilty of the Conduct described in this passage.

I. KINDRED INVOLVES SACRED OBLIGATIONS TO MUTUAL REGARD AND SUCCOUR . Moses had addressed Edom as a brother, and Israel had forborne to attack Edom, even when tempted to do so by most unneighbourly, unbrotherly conduct. The proper response to such conduct would have been something very different from what is here recorded. Amongst all nations, and in every stage of society, common descent from one ancestor is accepted as a bond of brotherhood and a pledge of friendliness.

II. THERE ARE INSTANCES IN WHICH THESE OBLIGATIONS ARE UTTERLY DISREGARDED . Such was the case with the Edomites. We trace in their conduct towards their kinsmen of Israel several stages of iniquity.

1 . Aggression. Edom "pursued his brother with the sword."

2 . Pitiless anger. Edom "corrupted his compassions."

3 . Implacability. Edom "kept his wrath forever." Such treatment would have been unjustifiable from any nation towards another; but the relation and circumstances made it flagrantly and atrociously wicked in the instance under consideration.

III. VIOLATION OF OBLIGATIONS SO SACRED INCURS DIVINE DISPLEASURE AND MERITED PUNISHMENT . A nation sins and a nation suffers. Doubtless innocent persons endure in many cases the sufferings which the guilty deserve. This is a mystery of Divine providence. Yet it is evident that cities, tribes, nations, may be, and often have been, chastised, as a proof of the Divine rule, as a correction for human disobedience, and as an inducement to repentance.—T.

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