Dec 15, 2013

At the time when God begins to speak through Hosea in 750 BC, Israel (which is referred to as Ephraim) has wondered so far from God they believed that worshiping God and Baal were one in the same.

In Chapter 4 God compares his people with a prostitute and says they do not care about their shame. The Covenant has been broken and God will let Israel go their own way. He draws a comparison between Israel that should behave more like a sheep, which can be led but this people are a Cow that wonders where ever it wants and refuses be led.

God is speaking directly to his people through the prophet Hosea, but in chapter 9 Hosea himself condemns his people and shines a light on their disobedience. Hosea is so troubled by what he’s witnessing that in verse 14 he calls down curses on his own people.

Ch 9:14 Lord, I am going to ask you to do bad things to these people.

Make it impossible for their women to have babies!

Make it impossible for their breasts to give milk to their babies!

One has to wonder how bad things have to get before you would start calling down curses on your own countrymen. This just shows us how Hosea sees the sins of his people through the eyes of God and how he pained for them to be right with their creator.

Chapter 14 is a call to healing and demonstration that God is merciful. At the conclusion of the exile He paints a picture of replanting Israel and making their roots strong.   We know that God is the Tree of Life and in verse 8 God says that their fruit will come from him. What a wonderful precursor to Jesus’ message of the Vine and its branches in John chapter 5.

The closing of Hosea is a powerful message that could be the closing verse for the entire Bible. I will add it as the last part of this devotional and not attempt to expand on its wisdom.

Ch 14:9 A wise person understands these things.

A clever person learns about these things.

The ways of the *Lord are right.

Good people will live by these ways.

But people who sin will fall.