Amos 2:13-3:2 Covenantal Justice

Commentator J. A. Motyer has written in his fine commentary The Message of Amos from The Bible Speaks Today © 1974:

Israel had comfortably forgotten ‘the vengeance of the covenant,’ the jealousy of God at work within the confines of His chosen people to punish transgression, to discipline unto greater holiness and to purge out evil. The words ‘the vengeance of the covenant’ occurs in Leviticus 26:25 and the ‘whole picture’ is given in verses 14-45 of the same chapter, the broad truth being that God’s saving work, brining people into His covenant of grace is not intended to induce a spirit of moral complacency but or moral ambition after holiness … A ‘covenant theologian’ like Amos could never have been guilty of proclaiming the end of the covenant relation between the Lord and His people. Passages such as Leviticus 26:31-38; Deuteronomy 28:58-68; Amos 2:13-16 and others may appear to destroy the entire covenant relationship between the Lord and His people, but if they are held within their own contexts (Lev 26:14-45; Deut 28:1-30, [Amos 9:11-15], etc.) as well as within the context of the whole Bible teaching on the covenant, it becomes clear that these fearful destructions are to be counted among the covenant-keeping (not covenant-breaking) acts of God. They purge out pretended members and purify true members.

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