Current Message - Hosea 2/16/09
TKC Ministries - Leon Hagins
Hosea, the first of 12 prophets in the old testament better known as the minor or lesser prophets. (Hosea through Malachi) This was due to the fact that their prophecies are considered shorter than those of the major prophets, not of lesser meaning or value. In fact they all pack a powerful punch.
Hosea has been called the first prophet of grace, the man with a sorrowful heart, and Israel’s earliest evangelist. Being a native of the Northern Kingdom, the iniquities and idolatries , of which he spoke of, weighed heavily upon his heart.
His sorrowful heart also came about during his home life. Through the wrongs he suffered he came to realize the sins committed by Israel against God, and the long history of unfaithfulness to him. The accounts of Hosea’s marriage, the birth of his children and his wife’s unfaithfulness and restoration really make for sad reading. However Hosea was called to express God’s message and to manifest his character. (ref. “ all the men of the bible)Hosea was a prophet to the 10 - tribe kingdom, but he had warnings for Judah also. He prophesied in the reigns of 4 kings of Judah Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah and one king of Israel , Jeroboam. Incredibly this would have been a period of about 72 years.
The book of Hosea points to the soon destruction of the 10 tribes and the fall of Samaria (Hos. 13:16), which took place in the 6th year of King Hezekiah’s reign. (ref. Dake’s bible pg. 1501)
Hosea chapter 1 - The word of the Lord that came unto Hosea (his name means salvation) the son of Beeri, in the days of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah, kings of Judah, and in the days of Jeroboam the son of Joash, king of Israel.
The beginning of the word of the Lord by Hosea. And the Lord said to Hosea, Go take unto thee a wife of whoredoms and children of whoredoms: for the land hath committed great whoredom, departing from the Lord.
So he took Gomer the daughter of Diblam; which conceived, and bare him a son. And the Lord said unto him, Call his name Jezreel; for yet a little while, and I will avenge the blood of Jezreel upon the house of Jehu, and will cause to cease the kingdom of the house of Israel.
And it shall come to pass at that day, that I will break the bow of Israel in the valley of Jezreel. And she conceived again, and bare a daughter. And God said unto him, call her name Loruhamah: for I will no more have mercy upon the house of Israel; but I will utterly take them away.
But I will have mercy upon the house of Judah, and will save them by the Lord their God, and will not save them by bow, nor sword, nor by battle, by horses, nor by horsemen.
Now when she had weaned Loruhamah, she conceived, and bare a son. Then said God, Call his name Loammi: for ye are not my people, and I will not be your God.
Yet the number of the children of Israel shall be as the sand of the sea, which cannot be measured nor numbered; and it shall come to pass, that in the place where it was said
unto them, Ye are not my people, there it shall be said unto them, Ye are the sons of the living God. Then shall the children of Judah and the children of Israel be gathered together, and appoint themselves one head, and they shall come up out of the land: for great shall be the day of Jezreel.
I always enjoy it when a good preacher preaches a good sermon on Hosea. To those unfamiliar with God’s word it would seem an unthinkable act for God to ask one of his prophets to marry a whore and not only that but to also have children by her. For centuries there have been scholarly debates questioning how God could ask one of his prophets to do something so distasteful. Ancient rabbis had no problem accepting the instructions as literally true, however medieval Jewish commentators found it deplorable. They got around the problem by claiming that the marriage never took place. They attempted to say that Hosea dreamt the whole scenario or that it was a prophetic vision.
Christian scholars also have trouble with the concept of marrying a harlot. Someone tried to say that Gomer was merely a concubine. Martin Luther proposed that the reason Hosea’s wife and children were linked to adultery was not because of the woman’s actual failings but only because the prophet wished to make a point about fidelity to God. Whatever their response to the puzzling story in the first 3 chapters, all biblical commentators agree that it proves that God’s love is so great that even infidelity will be forgiven.
It’s interesting that despite the unusual request from God, Hosea does not argue but does exactly what God commands him to do. (too bad we all don’t follow this example) Hosea like Ezekiel had a “ pantomime “ ministry, in which the prophet, at times, rather than speaking God’s word, would act it out. Examples Ezekiel 3:22-27 and chapters 4, 5, 6.
This scenario of the prophet marrying the whore is symbolic of what Israel did to GodGo, take yourself a wife of harlotry and have children of harlotry , for the land commits great harlotry by forsaking the Lord Hos. 1:2
The Children were given the following names symbolizing God’s rejection of the Israelites after they had rejected him.
Jezreel - God will scatter or sow. The meaning was that God would scatter Israel and sow them in all lands; and when his purpose for this was complete He would again sow them in their own land ( Hos 2:22-23 )I will have mercy no more, or I will not have compassion.
For ye are not my people, and I will not be your God.
What’s amazing is regardless of being cut off they would eventually multiply to be great in Christ when all Israel will be saved (Hos. 1:10 , Zech. 12:1-13 : Rom. 11:25-29) and be gathered (Hos. 1:11 ; Isa. 11:10 ; Ez.37) and would again be called the children of God. That time is yet future; the prediction will be fully fulfilled at the 2nd advent of Christ (Mt. 24:31)
Now the plot thickens because Gomer leaves Hosea to go back with her previous lovers (Hos 2:1-5). One can only imagine Hosea’s state of mind, first God tells him to marry a woman of whoredome, and to also have children by her. However after the honeymoon is
over, and three children later, ‘Home girl Gomer’ decides she has had enough of the good Reverend Hosea, so she takes off after her former lovers. One can only imagine how the church folk were whispering and gossiping. As I take note of people, during our brief lives, here on this planet, one thing that is quite noticeable, and that is that church folks sure can gossip, and can be down right mean at times. If poor Hosea had been living during this age of cell phones and text messages, the airways would be a buzz about Hosea and his whoring wife. We always like to do an analysis on other people’s lives and mishaps. One thing the Holy Spirit has taught me is to “ take a good look at yourself young man, before you judge others”. Oh how true this is, and how I try to adhere to it, and oh how I have seen the effects of those who don’t adhere to it. One moment they’ll be criticizing someone’s mistakes, or misfortune, and before the month’s out, they’re doing something just as stupid or even worse. Mt. 7:1 - judge not that ye be not judged
One can only imagine how poor Hosea must have felt. The first bit of gossip would have been about the mere fact that a man of God married a whore, and then after all was said and done she left him. Although nowhere in scripture do you read where he complained to God or disobeyed his commands, he no doubt was hurt by Gomer’s abandonment, just as God was when his people left him and sought other gods and customs.
Nevertheless, all of us who know God, and are familiar with his unique personality, know that God at times just can’t help loving us, and although he will correct and chastise us, and if need be or provoked, will execute judgment, he is no doubt a great God of compassion, forgiveness and love that goes far beyond any that could be offered by man.
In chapter 3 God tells Hosea to go again and love this woman who had left him for her lovers of old. He was to love her as God loves Israel who left him. Not only did Hosea buy her back but there was a contract made saying that she was to abide with him many days and not play the harlot. God also applied this to Israel.
did it to God, and we do it to God. He created us, wants to have a relationship with us, wants to love us, and he does love us. However we, like Gomer, take off on God, to go and do our own thing.
The fall of man that is recorded in Genisis, was a tremendous ordeal. And although Adam was banned from the garden, and now had to work for a living, I don’t believe he fully comprehended what, spiritually, took place. And just like Hosea bought his wife back, Jesus Christ through his death , burial and resurrection paid the price for us so that we can again have fellowship with God. Back in Hosea’s day as is today a harlot was considered a no good low life. Just as we , in comparison to God almighty, are no good.
Mt 10:18 & Lk. 18:19 -And Jesus said unto him, Why callest thou me good? There is none good but one , that is God.
Ps. 14:3 -they are all gone aside, they are all together become filthy: there is none that doeth good, no, not one.
Ps. 53:1-4 - The fool hath said in his heart there is no God. Corrupt are they, and have done abominable iniquity : there is none that doeth good. God looked down from heaven upon the children of men, to see if there were any that did understand, that did seek God.
Is. 1:2-4 - hear O heavens and give ear O earth for the Lord hath spoken, I have nourished and brought up children, and they have rebelled against me.
Every one of them is gone back: they are altogether become filthy ; there is none that doeth good ,no, not one. Have the workers of iniquity no knowledge? Who eat up my people as they eat bread: they have not called upon God.
The ox knoweth his owner, and the ass his master’s crib; but Israel doth not know, my people doth not consider (this is a passage of scripture , as does many, many others, that actually makes me feel bad for God, like sorrowful parents who have tried everything possible to make their children happy, only to have them rebel against them. This behavior saddens God, however it also angers him)
Ah sinful nation, a people laden with iniquity, a seed of evildoers, children that are corrupters: they have forsaken the Lord, they have provoked the Holy One of Israel unto anger, they have gone away backward.
Is. 1:21-23 - how is the faithful city become an harlot! It was full of judgment; righteousness lodged in it; but now murderers.
Thy silver is become dross, thy wine mixed with water.
Thy princes are rebellious , and companions of thieves: every one loveth gifts, and followed after rewards: they judge not the fatherless, neither doth the cause of the widow come unto them.
Is. 64:6-7 - but we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousness are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf: and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.
And there are none that calleth upon thy name, that stirreth up himself to take hold of thee; for thou hast hid thy face from us, and hast consumed us, because of our iniquities.Is. 65: 1-3 - I am sought of them that asked not for me; I am found of them that sought me not: I said, behold me, behold me, but unto a nation that was not called by my name. (this refers to the gentiles being converted and receiving salvation)I have spread out my hands all the day unto a rebellious people, which walketh in a way that was not good, after their own thoughts:
A people that provoketh me to anger continually to my face: that sacrificeth in gardens, and burneth incense upon altars of brick.
Rom. 3:10 - 18 It is written there is none righteous, no , not one.
There is none that understand, there is none that seeketh after God.
They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no , not one.
Their throat is an open sepulchre (sepulcher); with their tongues they have used deceit; the poison of asps is under their lips:
Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness:
Their feet are swift to shed blood.
Destruction and misery are in their ways.
And the way of peace have they not known:
There is no fear of God before their eyes.
All throughout the bible, God has had to contend with keeping his people in line and focused. However history has shown that arrogance, pride, lust , riches, laziness and many other things we do, can lead us astray from the good Lord.
No one can question God’s commitment of loving us and giving us all a chance, even to the point where he that was before the foundations of the world, and without sin, came into this crazy world and died for us. He also gave us his word, and a comforter, the Holy Spirit.
Let’s not keep on disappointing our Lord. And although we, like Gomer, have taken off on God, he has bought us back. Let’s humble ourselves and receive this act of loving kindness.