Faithlife Sermons

A Faithless Wife, but a Faithful Husband

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Hosea 2

Hosea 2 NASB95
Say to your brothers, “Ammi,” and to your sisters, “Ruhamah.” “Contend with your mother, contend, For she is not my wife, and I am not her husband; And let her put away her harlotry from her face And her adultery from between her breasts, Or I will strip her naked And expose her as on the day when she was born. I will also make her like a wilderness, Make her like desert land And slay her with thirst. “Also, I will have no compassion on her children, Because they are children of harlotry. “For their mother has played the harlot; She who conceived them has acted shamefully. For she said, ‘I will go after my lovers, Who give me my bread and my water, My wool and my flax, my oil and my drink.’ “Therefore, behold, I will hedge up her way with thorns, And I will build a wall against her so that she cannot find her paths. “She will pursue her lovers, but she will not overtake them; And she will seek them, but will not find them. Then she will say, ‘I will go back to my first husband, For it was better for me then than now!’ “For she does not know that it was I who gave her the grain, the new wine and the oil, And lavished on her silver and gold, Which they used for Baal. “Therefore, I will take back My grain at harvest time And My new wine in its season. I will also take away My wool and My flax Given to cover her nakedness. “And then I will uncover her lewdness In the sight of her lovers, And no one will rescue her out of My hand. “I will also put an end to all her gaiety, Her feasts, her new moons, her sabbaths And all her festal assemblies. “I will destroy her vines and fig trees, Of which she said, ‘These are my wages Which my lovers have given me.’ And I will make them a forest, And the beasts of the field will devour them. “I will punish her for the days of the Baals When she used to offer sacrifices to them And adorn herself with her earrings and jewelry, And follow her lovers, so that she forgot Me,” declares the Lord. “Therefore, behold, I will allure her, Bring her into the wilderness And speak kindly to her. “Then I will give her her vineyards from there, And the valley of Achor as a door of hope. And she will sing there as in the days of her youth, As in the day when she came up from the land of Egypt. “It will come about in that day,” declares the Lord, “That you will call Me Ishi And will no longer call Me Baali. “For I will remove the names of the Baals from her mouth, So that they will be mentioned by their names no more. “In that day I will also make a covenant for them With the beasts of the field, The birds of the sky And the creeping things of the ground. And I will abolish the bow, the sword and war from the land, And will make them lie down in safety. “I will betroth you to Me forever; Yes, I will betroth you to Me in righteousness and in justice, In lovingkindness and in compassion, And I will betroth you to Me in faithfulness. Then you will know the Lord. “It will come about in that day that I will respond,” declares the Lord. “I will respond to the heavens, and they will respond to the earth, And the earth will respond to the grain, to the new wine and to the oil, And they will respond to Jezreel. “I will sow her for Myself in the land. I will also have compassion on her who had not obtained compassion, And I will say to those who were not My people, ‘You are My people!’ And they will say, ‘You are my God!’ ”

Context

Israel now finds herself in the courtroom, on trial for her prostitution. However, instead of filing for divorce (Deut. 24) or even calling for her to be stoned (Deut. 22), the plea is for change from an adulterous lifestyle to one that is of honesty and commitment. The children are brought before the judge to testify on behalf of the husband, to plead with their mother to change, and repent. Failure to change, will result in the punishment that is fit for the crime.

Content

The call of repentance is at the heart of holiness. God pleas with Israel; that through punishment and discipline Israel will return to being faithful. The description of the depravity show how far from the marriage Gomer has gone, and how far from the marriage the nation of Israel has gone. The two concepts of marriage are provision and protection. Provision of the necessities of life: food, clothing, and shelter. Protecting the reputation, position, and persona of each other.

Intent

Holiness is the separation of or from the world. The nation of Israel was to be different than the other nations; different in their politics, social status, cultural and religious practices. They were to be in Holy matrimony with God. Warning is provided throughout the prophecy. The commitment of God towards Israel is restated, His faithfulness put on display, and pleads for Israel to make the same commitment. It is the Holiness of God that is on display.

Circumstance

The prosperity of Israel has led her to believe that this blessing did not come from God, but from Baal. Her prosperity has blinded her to the truth of her present situation, that she is about to receive divorce papers. She is about to lose her protection and provision that God through His faithfulness is required to give her. Israel will eventually return and become faithful to God. I believe that we are witnessing this right now.

Situation

God is laying out the grounds of divorce, laying out the expectations, and laying out His willingness to allure Israel back to Him. He will prove that He is God over all the gods, that He is the King of kings, and the Lord of lords. No matter what Israel, or any other nation may say or do, God is God. As Israel continues to follow her own desire, God will remain the same. Eventually, He will win Israel back, and an everlasting marriage will occur.

Bridge

In our world today, we appear to be searching for the next big thing, an original idea, or trusting in everything but God. Our depravity keeps us from a full understanding of God, and what His overall plan requires. Individualism and materialism challenges our religion, and our commitment to God. If any marriage is going to last, both people must be willing put aside their individualism and overcome their lust of the eyes, flesh, and pride of life. Holiness is not instantaneous, it is a process by which God is continuing to work in, and through us. However, this is only done through our acknowledgement and a willingness to allow Him to do just that.
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