The three children in this family taught us about the grace of God, Gomer (Hosea’s wife) has taught us about the holiness of God, and now Hosea will teach us about the love of God.
Hosea’s love was so strong that the vilest behavior could not dull it … Gomer broke his heart but she made it possible for him to give to the world a picture of the heart of the God who loves us.
I. God’s Love Is Promised (2:14-23)
The repeated us of the I will statements of God in these closing verses of chapter two assure us that God has a wonderful future planned for Israel. Let’s take some time to notice His promises:
- 1 will allure her (v.14) — this means that God will woo her. That He will seek her hand in marriage. Just as God lead Israel through the wilderness and “married” her at Sinai, so God will meet Israel in the wilderness of the last days and lead her into her land and glorious kingdom. God will speak comfortably unto her (i.e. God will speak to her heart). It is the heart that God must touch if we are to be changed.
- I will give (v.15) — The Lord will guarantee a return to their land and a restoration of prosperity. Once again there is a name change as with the children (1:4-2:1). The Valley of Achor (i.e. the valley of trouble … the place where Achan dies (Josh.7:26). The name is exchanged from a “place of trouble” for a door of hope. Only through trouble can Israel be brought to the hope of restoration.
This is the OT equivalent of Rom.8:28. Only God can take defeat and shame and tum it into victory and glory.
- I will take away (v.16-17) — Ishi (v.16) means “my husband” while Baali means “my master.” Both terms were used by Jewish wives to address their husbands, but the point here is that one day the relationship will be one of intimacy between God and His children.
How’s this possible? Do you remember the words of the Lord in the final hours before his death? (Jn.12:27, 13:21). Why was Jesus troubled? He was troubled in our place. God the Father troubled Him with our sin that we might be saved and brought back to God.
- I will betroth (v.18-20) — In that day (the day of Christ’s return). What a glorious day that will be!
As the hymn writer says, “Prone to wonder Lord I feel it, prone to leave the God I love.” Oh but one day we will be able to sing “here’s my heart oh take and seal it, seal it for thy courts above.” What wonderful gifts to present to the bride: righteousness, judgment, loving kindness, mercy, faithfulness. Want that be glorious? To be completely restored; never again to roam as we do now from the One that loves us.
- I will hear (v.21-22) — How wonderful to know that God hears us. How wonderful to know that our prayers do not fall on deaf ears. There will be a complete restoration of all of God’s creation in that day. A place where sin and death will no longer reign (Rom.5:12-21).
- I will sow (v.23) — There is no greater “door of hope” that could be set before us. If you have ever felt that all is hopeless; listen to God as He speaks to you.
So, God’s love is promised and…
II. God’s Love Is Pictured (3:1-5)
We have one more “action sermon” from Hosea’s life. Gomer had left Hosea and was living with a lover, another picture of how Israel has treated God.
Hosea had to buy her back at a cost of fifteen pieces of silver (v.2), half the price of a slave and about ten bushels of barley. That wasn’t a lot, Gomer had cheapened herself by her sin.
But in our case, what we need to remember is that God purchased us at a tremendous price (1 Pet.18-19).
- Today Israel is without a King (v.4a) because she rejected her King. We will not have this man to reign over us (Lk.19:14).
- Today Israel has no prince (v.4b) because there is no reigning dynasty in Israel. The records were destroyed by the Romans in A.D. 70.
- Today Israel has not sacrifice (v.4c) because they have no temple.
But for us, as for Israel, the key to having what we don’t have is to return (v.5). I want you to look at Hosea’s closing prayer in chapter 14:1-2. That prayer is good for any sinner; even you and me.
No one ever earns or deserves God’s love; it is always a free gift to those who are unworthy. There is no clearer picture of God’s love than the cross, but we don’t always see it illustrated in the lives of people we meet.
People that are hurt often look for revenge or try to figure out how they can sue someone. Instead of loving the unloved, it is far more common to hear people condemn them with harsh arguments, gossip, and criticisms not aimed at restoration. If we want to win people to Christ and see their life transformed, someone most love them enough to care.
Do you feel hopeless? Do you fell unloved? Well take heart because ve have learned a lot from Hosea in these first three chapters. The answer to our deepest needs is found in God. A God who is …
- and Loving