God’s justice is tempered with mercy
✍️👩🏾🦰 THE 📖OF HOSEA
Hosea is a book about unfaithfulness.
It is a tragic portrait of unfaithfulness in life’s most important relationships: a husband and wife, and God and his people.
We are Gomer
When the Lord first spoke through Hosea, the Lord said to Hosea, “Go, take to yourself a wife of whoredom and have children of whoredom, for the land commits great whoredom by forsaking the Lord.”So he went and took Gomer, the daughter of Diblaim, and she conceived and bore him a son.
Gomer is presented as the unfaithful wife to Hosea. As with much prophetic literature the life of the prophet portrays the truth of God. Hosea’s life becomes a picture of the mercy and grace and patience of God with an unfaithful people. The message is to the people, the bride of Christ.
God is absolutely faithful. We are not. This book goes into detail about this.
It portrays idolatry and adultery.
When we worship idols (prosperity, money, success, comfort, safety, recognition, pleasure)
we commit adultery against God. Even ignoring God in favor of our own lives is a form of unfaithfulness.
Despite all of this, God still wants us! He loves us that much.
God Desires Relationship Not Ritual
For I desire steadfast love and not sacrifice,
the knowledge of God rather than burnt offerings.
The phrases ‘steadfast love’ and ‘knowledge of God’ are both relational in nature. When we are fully in love with God, we want to grow in our experience with him. We want to really know him in his fulness. That requires a day by day walk and increasing intimacy. We then experience the progressive revelation of his character, his ways and, certainly, his love in a deeper way all the time. There is a great joy in discover with this type of relationship!
This verse also states that what God does not desire is ritual and sacrifice.
When we read the Old Testament, we see that sacrifice was commanded by God. Does this mean it is no longer required?
This is not the point that God is making here. During the time of Hosea’s prophecy, the people continued to sacrifice. They went to the temple, acted holy in their worship and believed that going through the motions was good enough. They were deep in sin while they were religious on the surface!
This is a warning for us. Too many today go through the motions at church and then live the way they want to, completely ignoring God. This is not what he wants!
God Punishes His Own People
Chapters 8-10 describes some of the consequences for disobedience.
There are several consistent themes throughout scripture. Certainly, God’s love is one of them. God’s grace saves people – always has, always will.
God chose Israel because of his grace. He saves us today because of his grace.
Another theme, we don’t like quite as much is God’s requirement that his people are obedient to him. That theme is consistent in all of scripture. The consequences of sin are not negated by the cross. We cannot be rebellious and hateful as God’s people and expect him to turn a blind eye. That would impugn the integrity and holiness of God.
God’s Punishment is Designed to Bring us Back So you, by the help of your God, return,
hold fast to love and justice,
and wait continually for your God.
God helps us when we want to get our lives right. He works in and through our commitment to him to empower us to follow through.
We have some responsibility here, too. We choose to love, we choose justice and we choose to wait for God’s leadership .
Love is not just a feeling, it is a choice. When we choose to love God and love one another, we continually make decisions and live on the basis of love. He helps us to do this but we still bear the responsibility.
Justice is something that we should always live for. Sadly, we often view justice through the eyes of the world and not the eyes of God.
God’s justice is tempered with mercy.
We should never embrace cold justice but always consider the individual. And most importantly, we must remember that God’s justice is supreme and apply that justice to our own lives!
Are we patient enough to wait for God to lead us through all that we encounter?
Are we willing to wait for Him to visit us with His presence and transform our lives?
We must always remember that He is God and His timing is perfect. Waiting for God does not mean He is late, it means He wants us to want Him that much!
✍️👩🏾🦰Mrs. Kalaiselvi Balakrishnan in Jesus Christ 👩🏾🦰✍️