Monday Reflections – Hosea 14: 1-9 – The World Behind the Text

This week we’re going to be looking at Hosea 14:1-9.  Today we’re going to be looking at the world behind the text, what is happening in the greater world that affects Hosea.

Hosea is an interesting book of Scripture.  Hosea was one of the prophets. His work is considered one of the Minor Prophets.  Remember, in the Old Testament, the distinction between major and minor prophets is not one of importance. But it is a distinction of the length of the book. Hosea is one of the longer minor prophets, totaling 14 chapters, but it’s still much shorter than Jeremiah, or Isaiah.  

Hosea paints, an interesting picture of God’s love for his people.  His life is one of an allegory.  We see quite often in the life of the prophets that they will be called by God to do actions that we may find as off-putting our as distracting, as a way to communicate to the people, the greater message, God is having them preach.

For Hosea, the message that God has called him to preach is that of idolatry.  For God idolatry is seen much like adultery.  So because of this.   God has Hosea marry Gomer, who is a prostitute.  Throughout the rest of his life, Hosea will have to purchase Gomer from slavery, over and over again.

And just the same way that God purchases us from slavery to sin, over and over again.  One would think that Hosea his love for Gomer would lessen the cause of her many sins, but it does not. He still loves her. In the same way that one may think that God’s love for us would lessen because of our great sin, but it does not God continues to love us, in spite of our sin in our actions.

That does not mean that our sins in our actions will not have consequences, because of course, they will.  But God’s love remains. And just as Hosea over and over again purchases gomers freedom. So does God, over and over again, purchase our freedom.

Chapter 14 ends with God’s great promise of hope that if the people return to God from their sin. He will take away their guilt and give forgiveness.  But this starts with the people realizing that they will be saved, not by earthly power, but by God.  This is a great reminder to us that if we turn from our sins and turn away from dependence on earthly things, and turn to God, we will find salvation in grace they’re waiting on us. Hosea reminds us that God’s love is greater than even our sin.

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