Time to get plumb.  Today we see in the prophecy of Amos that God set a plumb line among us to measure our alignment with God’s ways.  Jesus is our plumb line.  How do you line up with the Lord?  I’m straightening up to get plumb today…

1 This is what the Sovereign Lord showed me: He was preparing swarms of locusts after the king’s share had been harvested and just as the late crops were coming up. 2 When they had stripped the land clean, I cried out, “Sovereign Lord, forgive! How can Jacob survive? He is so small!”

3 So the Lord relented.
“This will not happen,” the Lord said.

4 This is what the Sovereign Lord showed me: The Sovereign Lord was calling for judgment by fire; it dried up the great deep and devoured the land. 5 Then I cried out, “Sovereign Lord, I beg you, stop! How can Jacob survive? He is so small!”

6 So the Lord relented.
“This will not happen either,” the Sovereign Lord said.

7 This is what he showed me: The Lord was standing by a wall that had been built true to plumb, with a plumb line in his hand. 8 And the Lord asked me, “What do you see, Amos?”

“A plumb line,” I replied.

Then the Lord said, “Look, I am setting a plumb line among my people Israel; I will spare them no longer.

9 “The high places of Isaac will be destroyed
and the sanctuaries of Israel will be ruined;
with my sword I will rise against the house of Jeroboam.”
Amos 7:1-9

Locusts and fire were on the Lord’s mind for those who use high places and put idols between themselves and God.  The prophet Amos begged the Lord to spare Israel and he relented.  All the while, the stink of these practices was reaching heaven. God’s wrath rages when his people violate his holiness in their lives…

The final vision Amos received was God standing by a wall built true to plumb.  The Lord had a plumb line in his hand.  A plumb line is a weight called a plumb bob hanging from it.  The line it hangs from is a perfect representation of vertical straightness.  Anything lined up vertically with that line is perfectly plumb.  The bob is heading with gravity toward the earth and will pull the line straight down.  Plumb.

Jesus is our plumb line.  God set him among us to show us what a right life – a plumb life – looks like in practice.  How do you line up?  What is your alignment with the life of Christ?

I can tell you that Jesus didn’t struggle with the false worship and idolatry that Israel struggled with.  He lived in wholehearted devotion and with a willing mind to follow God… He didn’t fall into the traps we face in terms of self-centredness and wanton sin.  He said that his own will was secondary to the Father’s.

How do you line up?

God dealt with Israel for not lining up plumb to his holiness and expectations of them.  Their exile was directly related to their sin.  It’s worth our while to straighten up and align with the Lord now.  Time to get plumb.


Marc Kinna


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