Strange Command

Scripture Reading — Hosea 1:2-9

The Lord said, “Call him Lo-Ammi (which means not my people), for you are not my people, and I am not your God.” — Hosea 1:9

What a strange command! God told Hosea to marry a promiscuous woman. Why would God tell Hosea to do that? How would that make Hosea feel in his heart? What was happening in God’s heart that he would tell Hosea to do this?

God did this to point out that the people of Israel had become unfaithful to him, just as a promiscuous woman would be unfaithful to her husband and family. God’s people had been following after the gods of other nations, even though all those gods were false and couldn’t do anything for them. Only God could provide for the people and care for them, but they ignored God and became spiritually unfaithful.

What happened to the household of Hosea? His wife, Gomer, ran away from home. She had affairs with other men. Imagine how this must have hurt Hosea’s heart. Then God commanded Hosea to bring his wife back (Hosea 3). If we were in Hosea’s place, would we want to bring our spouse back?

Hosea’s situation helps us to see how painful it was for God to keep loving his people and caring for them. Even though they kept turning away to their own destruction, God kept loving them—just as he keeps loving us today. Eventually he sent his only Son, Jesus, to pay for all the sins of us fallen sinners and to take us back. What an amazing God of love!

Prayer

Loving God, we praise you for giving your Son to save us. Help us to understand what it cost you to keep loving us. Thank you. In Jesus’ name, Amen.