Amos 5, 10-15
Something to read
They hate him that rebuketh in the gate, and they abhor him that speaketh uprightly.
Forasmuch therefore as your treading is upon the poor, and ye take from him burdens of wheat: ye have built houses of hewn stone, but ye shall not dwell in them; ye have planted pleasant vineyards, but ye shall not drink wine of them.
For I know your manifold transgressions and your mighty sins: they afflict the just, they take a bribe, and they turn aside the poor in the gate from their right.
Therefore the prudent shall keep silence in that time; for it is an evil time.
Seek good, and not evil, that ye may live: and so the LORD, the God of hosts, shall be with you, as ye have spoken.
Hate the evil, and love the good, and establish judgment in the gate: it may be that the LORD God of hosts will be gracious unto the remnant of Joseph.
King James Version
They hate the one who reproves in the gate, and they abhor the one who speaks the truth. Therefore, because you trample on the poor and take from them levies of grain, you have built houses of hewn stone, but you shall not live in them; you have planted pleasant vineyards, but you shall not drink their wine.
For I know how many are your transgressions, and how great are your sins - you who afflict the righteous, who take a bribe, and push aside the needy in the gate. Therefore the prudent will keep silent in such a time; for it is an evil time.
Seek good and not evil, that you may live; and so the Lord, the God of hosts, will be with you, just as you have said. Hate evil and love good, and establish justice in the gate;
New Revised Standard Version
Something to think about
Today is known as Maundy Thursday or Holy Thursday. It marks the beginning of the three day celebration of Easter for Christians. This period remembers the Last Supper Jesus had with his friends, the crucifixion and death of Jesus, and the Resurrection to new life.
Maundy Thursday commemorates the Last Supper of Jesus Christ with his friends. The word Maundy comes from the Latin meaning mandate or command from Jesus at the Last Supper, 'I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you should also love one another'. (John 13.34)
Amos reminds us that the wealthy members of the community took grain from poor and needy farmers leaving them without enough money to live on.
Unfortunately, in today's world, there are still farmers and labourers who are exploited in the developing world who do not have enough money to eat or buy medicine when they get sick because they are exploited by unfair trade.
This passage reminds us that God is near when we make the right choices in our lives. One of the ways we can show love for others in the world is participating in God's miracle of Fair Trade.
Something to do
This Easter we can celebrate our love for others in the world by buying and choosing Fair Trade products. It is by doing so we might be able to help others to live.
Something to pray
God of the world, we know you can bring about change. We remember countries where there is not enough food to eat and famine abounds and we pray for change.
Lord, we thank you for the miracle of Fair Trade. Help us to play our part by participating in your miracle of Fair Trade and justice to make the right choices to promote Fair Trade so that farmers and labourers can live by the choices we made.
Today's contributor is Emma Perry, a student at Westminster College, Cambridge.