“From among all the families on the earth, I have been intimate with you alone.
That is why I must punish you for all your sins.” 3:2
Israel is God’s special possession, his holy people, whom he gave a great calling with a great responsibility. This magnifies their failure (as they know better, have been repeatedly warned and given repeated chances to change) and the consequences.
Chapter 3 exposes the hypocrisy and evil intention of the religious leaders. They neglect the poor, misuse their wealth and abuse their power, yet faithfully attend religious services.
Yet again, God favors the poor and vulnerable, even over his own special people.
What a great reminder about God’s heart: he doesn’t care about our religious tendencies if it contradicts how we treat people. Truly knowing and loving God changes your heart. You care less about wealth. You have a heart for justice. You not only see the poor, but reach out to them. When we are in true relationship with God, our hearts align with his.
Diagnosis the condition of your heart. Do you find yourself prioritizing what God prioritizes more and more as you grow closer to him? Do you care about the people God cares about? Who do you resemble more, the world or Jesus?