Last week, I went to the grocery store with my wife. While I was there, I noticed that many products were missing from the store shelves. In fact, many of the shelves were just empty.
Why are the store shelves in America empty? Well, there are several reasons. First, consumers in this COVID crazy world are buying and hoarding products. People purchase extra items just in case there is another quarantine. Second, stores are dealing with a shortage of employees. We live in a country where people do not want to work. So, there is nobody to stock the shelves. Third, U.S. ports are backed up with ships wanting to unload their cargo. A shortage of truckers to move the goods has caused delays in unloading cargo ships. And there seems to be no end in sight.
Could empty grocery store shelves eventually lead to a famine in the United States? I don’t know. I do know that today we are seeing a famine growing all around this planet. We are told by the United Nations daily that a food famine is here, and it is growing. We are told that in just a short time we will need to be producing 50 percent more food than the world is currently producing.
Throughout history, famines have come and gone. Sometimes they are quite severe and encompass large areas of the globe. Other times they are not so far reaching, affecting only a small segment of our population. For the most part, the United States has been able to escape famines. We are a land of plenty. So much so that our country has always been very involved in sending supplies to areas where there is human suffering due to a famine or some other catastrophe.
Sure, today we are seeing a decline of availability of some food products and rising prices are beginning to put a strain on our pocketbooks. Gasoline prices more than doubled last year. The cost of living is high and going up. Still, most Americans will go to bed with full bellies tonight. We are not suffering from a famine in this country.
However, I believe there is a famine coming. Empty store shelves and high prices pale in comparison to the famine coming upon this land which was spoken of by Amos.
In Amos 8:11–12, we read, “Behold, the days come, saith the Lord GOD, that I will send a famine in the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the LORD: And they shall wander from sea to sea, and from the north even to the east, they shall run to and fro to seek the word of the LORD, and shall not find it.”
The people of Amos’ time knew about famines. They had been through a few. They knew what it was like to live through a drought and watch one crop after another fail and die. They understood the suffering that famine brings when people starve to death. But the prophet Amos declared that there was a worse famine than a famine of food.
In the Gospel of Matthew, Jesus said, “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God” (Matthew 4:4). For you to grow spiritually, you must feast on the words of the Bible. Every kind of life requires nutrients—including your spirit. God gave you a Bible. God gave you men who have the gift of preaching and teaching. But are you listening?
A famine for the Word of God is coming upon our land and in fact is in partly already here. People as a whole—that is worldwide—are no longer interested in hearing the Word of God. We live in a world where people run to and fro seeking what they are not able to find. Because they have rejected God’s Word for so long, people are not able to recognize the truth any longer even if that is what they desire. We are reaping what we have sown.
The famine of “hearing” God’s Word is getting worse daily, and this famine is partially caused by believers who won’t speak up. It appears Christians are simply saying, “There’s always someone out there witnessing, why should I bother.” But this attitude is completely against God’s Word.
The mainstream media is a huge platform which the enemy uses to further his agenda of lies. If Christians were more vocal, we could also use this platform to spread the truth of God’s message of salvation. But that isn’t the case, is it? Christians have become so passive that the world has it easy when it comes to walking all over us—especially those in the mainstream media.
In Revelation 3, the Lord addresses the Laodicean church—the church at the end of the age. Jesus stands on the outside and knocks; whoever will open the door will receive unto them our Lord Jesus. The problem with the Laodicean church is they believe they already have everything they need. Guess what? They don’t have the most important part—Jesus Christ. Remember Jesus was standing on the outside knocking; He was not in the church.
The famine of God’s Word is a choice people have made to reject it, to completely turn from the truth and embrace the lie of secularism. Even many Christians have embraced this lie. According to research done by the Barna Group, only seven percent of born-again believers have a biblical worldview. The rest have turned from the truth of the Bible. That means 93 percent of professing Christians have no desire to hear the truth.
What Amos is speaking of in referring to a famine of God’s Word is that people will no longer “hear” the Word of God. Whether consciously or unconsciously they will seek after it in the end times, but they won’t find it. They didn’t want to “hear” it for so long that it will no longer be available to them. A “God famine,” so to speak, brought about by a lack of pursuit of His Word.
Many pastors are either going through this famine or are steeped in it. Because so many have turned away from God’s Word, they are no longer able to preach the truth. People not wanting to hear the truth have convinced their pastors of what they want to hear. Pastors wanting to please their congregations preach what their congregations want to hear. Both are turning away from what God wants them to be teaching and to be taught so that sooner or later God just takes the Word away from them all together. We know for a fact this end-time scenario is happening before our very eyes.
If we seek God, God tells us that we will find Him. On the other hand, if we despise God and remain in this attitude for very long, it will be increasingly more difficult to “hear” His word, let alone receive it unto ourselves. This is an attitude in which many are in today; they are completely unaware of where they are headed. Of course, we know they are headed for Hell.
If we as born-again believers will confront these people with the truth of God’s Word, the Holy Spirit has a better than even chance to convict them of their foolishness and turn them toward God and the Holy Bible before it’s too late. We must plant the seeds of His Word to stave off this famine coming in our land. God will do the rest.
You can learn more about the prophet Amos and his message of famine in James Collins’ new book The 12 available now from Beacon Street Press.