Prophets, prayers and people An assignment by Jessica Hempstead

Prophets

So what is a prophet? Prophets are people, normally chosen by God, to preach a message. This message could be about any issue in current society, for example, social injustice or religion. But prophets aren't just a thing of the past. There are many modern prophets around us today, some who have been commemorated for their efforts and some who haven't. But how do you identify a modern prophet and, most importantly, what is a modern day prophet? Let's take a look at one, shall we?

Pat farmer-multi-marathon runner

Pole to Pole Run

Spirit of India run

middle east peace run

Vietnam run

All pictures from; https://www.patfarmer.com/the-runs

Before Pat Farmer was a multi-marathon endurance runner/motivational speaker, he was a member of the Liberal Party in the House of Representatives, representing the town of Macarthur, south-west Sydney. Pat worked in politics from 2001 to 2010 (Celebrity Speakers, 2017, para.7). He has been married twice, first to Lisa Farmer, who unfortunately died of Mitral Valve Colapse in 1998, then to Tania Farmer, whom he married in 2014. He also has two children, Brooke and Dillon.

Pat Farmer is like a prophet because he strives to help and support the needy. The motivation behind his most noted run, Pole to Pole, were he ran from the North Pole to the South Pole, was to improve sanitation and water supplies by providing the Red Cross with money to do so. He raised about $100,000. Another one of his runs, the Spirit of India, was to raise money (and awareness) for disadvantaged girls in India. He ran 4416.7 km in 64 days and raised $30,000 (Pat Farmer, 2017, para.4).

Left to right: Pat farmer before he commences Pole to Pole. Pat running by himself down a street in India. Pat Farmer running with Indian school girls behind him.

A patriotic Australian, Pat Farmer is a high-profile leader, with a large media following and the ability to unite and inspire action for a vision or solution. He has transitioned an internationally renowned athletic career into a highly respected career as an inspirational and motivational speaker known for his captivating and entertaining addresses (Celebrity Speakers, 2017, para.9)

amos-The prophet of the needy

Before Amos was chosen to be the voice of God he was a shepherd taking care of sycamore-fig trees in Tokea. He did not expect to be chosen to become a prophet since he did not come from a family of prophets, but he was chosen anyway (Amos 7:14-15). He was one of the twelve minor prophets, preaching to the people of Israel around 750 B.C, or two years before the earthquake (Amos 1:1)

Left to Right: The Prophet Amos By Gustave dore; The Prophet Amos By James Tissot

Amos was the prophet chosen to preach to the rich about the injustice to the poor. He preached about men using women immorally, selling off people for goods and the helplessness of the poor (Amos 2:6-8). God chose him to preach about this because he could see that the people of Israel had forgotten to love their neighbors and now only looked after their own needs. They were selfish. Amos was most likely chosen as a prophet since he could easily relate to the poor, a shepherd being his previous profession. But unfortunately, since he was a foreigner the rich people chose to ignore him instead of listen to his messages.

(All the bible references are from this website: https://www.insight.org/resources/bible/the-minor-prophets/amos)

How do pat and Amos relate?

Even though Pat did not live 2,767 (Yes I did the math) years ago, Amos and him still have a lot in common. The main message was to raise awareness and address the issue of the poor being oppressed and not having as many rights as the upper classes do, they just did it in different ways. Pat raised money and ran half way across the world to raise awareness while Amos showed the ones who were doing harm to the poor what they were doing wrong thorough preaching. So Pat and Amos, though separated by time, are strongly connected by their message of showing justice to the poor.

This is what the Lord says: “The people of Israel have sinned again and again, and I will not let them go unpunished! They sell honorable people for silver and poor people for a pair of sandals. They trample helpless people in the dust and shove the oppressed out of the way. Both father and son sleep with the same woman, corrupting my holy name (Amos 2:6-8)

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