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Hosea outline for study

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Theme:  Yahweh’s love spurned but constant

I.        He who first loved loveth still:  God’s initiating, constant, covenant love

A.       He first loved

1.       Pictured in Yahweh’s command to Hosea to take a wife (Hos. 1:2)

2.       Pictured in the Exodus (11:1-4; 12:9; 13:4)


B.       He loveth still

1.       Pictured in Yahweh’s command to Hosea to love his unfaithful wife (Hos. 3:1)

2.       Seen in Yahweh’s “wooing” of His unfaithful bride (Hos. 2:14)

3.       Revealed by His heart-grief over Israel’s sin and impending judgment (11:8)

II.      Spurned love:  Israel’s covenant unfaithfulness

A.       The covenant stipulations spurned (4:6; 6:7; 8:1, 12)

1.       Sins against their fellow man (4:2; 7:1-5; 10:13; 12:7)

2.       Spirit of violence and revolt (6:8; 7:6-7; 8:4)

B.       The Lord of the covenant spurned (6:7; 8:14; 11:12;[1] 13:6)


1.       Israel had committed adultery against her “Husband” (1:2; 2:2, 5, 7; 4:15; 5:3-4; 9:1)

2.       Israel had failed to “know” Him (4:1, 6; 5:4; 6:6)

3.       Israel had sought God for self-serving motives (7:14)

4.       Israel had turned to other nations (5:13; 7:8-11; 8:9-10; 12:1)

III.   His arms still open wide:  Pleas to repent (2:2; 5:15; 10:12; 12:1-6; 14:1-2)

A.       Hosea’s actions toward his unfaithful wife (Hos. 3:1-3)

B.       God’s repeated admonitions to Israel to return to Him

1.       Repentance includes turning from one’s sins (2:2; 10:12; 12:6)

2.       Repentance is a turning to God Himself in confession and trust (5:15; 10:12; 12:6; 14:1-2)

C.      Israel’s response to God’s tender pleas (7:10; 11:5; 13:9)

IV.    Whom the Lord loveth He correcteth[2]:  Impending Judgment

A.       Images used to picture judgment

1.       The names of Hosea’s three children (1:4, 6, 9)

2.       Gomer placed under a period of restriction (3:3-4)

3.       God uses a number of images to describe His judgment of Israel

a.       “Moth” (5:12), “which destroys clothing”[3] (see Job 13:28; Isa. 50:9; 51:8)

b.       “Rottenness” (5:12), “which progressively causes bones to decay”[4] (Prov. 12:4; 14:30)

c.        A “lion,” which tears to pieces (5:14; cf. 13:7-8)

d.       A bird-catcher, spreading a net for Israel (7:12)

e.        A farmer, who puts a plow yoke on a heifer (10:11)[5]

f.        A “leopard,” which lies in wait to destroy (13:7)

g.        A “bear,” which tears the chest in pieces (13:8)

B.       The nature of the coming judgment

1.       Physical judgment

2.       Spiritual judgment

V.      Loved with everlasting love: Future restoration and blessing

A.       God judges in order to restore

B.       There is an inseparable link in Hosea between judgment and restoration

C.      The restoration corresponds to the judgment, but ultimately surpasses it

1.       Physical restoration

2.       Spiritual restoration



[1] See the NASB at 11:12:  “Judah is also unruly against God, even against the Holy One who is faithful.”

[2] As R. K. Harrison notes, “The discipline to be imposed as a means of bringing this to pass was actually an indication of divine love and concern, since it would help to awaken in the Israelites an awareness of true spiritual values.”  ZPEB, 3:212.

[3] Chisholm, 1392.

[4] Chisholm, 1392.

[5] For a heifer, threshing was “a comparatively light task, made pleasant by the fact that the creature was unmuzzled and free to eat (Dt. 25:4) as it pulled the threshing-sledge over the gathered corn.” Kidner, 98.  Plowing was hard work, and God says that He would cause a plow yoke to pass over upon Israel’s fair neck (10:11).  Exile in Assyria was much more difficult than obedience to Yahweh.  My yoke is easy, Christ says, and my burden is light (Matt. 11:30).

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