13. Hosea:Coming in Love

Hosea 1.1-3; 6.103; 11.8-9; 12.6; 13.4-6; 13.14; 14

We all have that one friend who insists on being with someone who isn’t good for them. You know the one, she cries on your shoulder time after time or he can’t hold a conversation with you without having to leave the room to phone and fix some relationship crisis again and again. I’m the terrible kind of friend who will eventually ask

So remind me why you two are still together again?

Hosea had the only legitimate answer (and the only legitimate use of this answer) that I have heard to date – no pun intended.

I married her because God told me to.

She was a prostitute by the way.

There’s a lot of fiery words surrounding the issue of the sanctity of marriage at the moment and I’m surprised that the liberals don’t cite Hosea in their arguments. After all, if God has such a high view of marriage, what was he doing making one of how prophets marry a woman who had a questionable job which meant she was consistently unfaithful?

Hosea had to marry a prostitute and keep going after her and bringing her back because we humans are pretty good at self-justification when directly confronted with our wrong doing. It’s true, all of us do it.

When we hear a story or see a metaphor though we learn a lot more quickly and clearly. It brings home the point or the rebuke far more sharply than mere confrontation would (obviously there is a place for confrontation though).

It becomes clear throughout Hosea that his marriage is an image of God and Israel. It’s a picture of Christ and his Church.

He loves us and yet we continually stray after other things. We consistently fall in love with other things and what they promise us; money, work, family, relationship status, hobbies, movies, music. It doesn’t even matter what it is if it’s not God. Read through Hosea, it’s not a long book. You’ll soon see that God has some strong words to say about unfaithfulness.

The Church is not Hosea. In fact, let’s make this personal, you are not Hosea. You are Gomer every time. Christ is Hosea, constantly coming after us, constantly bringing us back, constantly loving us despite the fact that he knows that our hearts will stray and our feet will follow again and again because that’s who we are.

It takes no small love to redeem that which couldn’t care less about the terrible state it is in. He loved us enough to die to bring us back to himself and we were the ones who killed him.

So why is Jesus coming? Because he loves us so much that he died for us while we still hated him

Today’s song: O God Forgive Us – For King and Country

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