The Book of the Twelve (Minor Prophets) 03: Hosea (1)
The Book of the Twelve: Hosea 1 (“minor prophets” part 3)
Dr. Gregg Strawbridge, Minister
The Book of the Twelve begins with Hosea, whom Yahweh instructs to take a wife of harlotry as a portrait of Israel’s harlotry toward her divine Husband.
ONE - After taking a “wife of Adultery” (Gomer) children are conceived: The first child (a son) was named Jezreel. “Name him ‘Jezreel,’ because in a little while I will punish the dynasty of Jehu on account of the bloodshed in the valley of Jezreel.” Jezreel was the site of Jehu’s ruthless massacre of the house of Ahab (1:4; cf. 2 Kings 9-10). 1:5 At that time, I will destroy the military power of Israel in the valley of Jezreel.”
TWO - 1:6. The second child received the name Lo-Ruhamah, which means “she is not loved.” Her name indicated that the Lord’s love for Israel would be cut off for a time. “Ruhamah,” describes tender feelings of compassion, such as those expressed by a parent for a child (cf. 1 Kings 3:26; Ps. 103:13; Isa. 49:15).
THREE - 1:8-9. The third child, a son, was named Lo-Ammi, which means “not My people.” In the ancient covenant formula God declared, “I will walk among you and be your God, and you will be My people” (Lev. 26:12; cf. Ex. 6:7; Deut. 26:17-18). But now that relationship was to be severed. Literally, “and I [am] not I AM to you.”
YET - 1:10. Despite this God is a covenant keeping Lord and the Israelites will again be like the sand on the seashore in fulfillment of the Lord’s irrevocable promise to Abraham (Gen. 22:17; 32:12). In the same place where Israel heard the words not My people (cf. Hosea 1:9) they will be called sons of the living God.
Gregg Strawbridge, Ph.D., is the pastor of All Saints Church in Lancaster, PA. He became a committed follower of Jesus Christ at age 20, discipled in the context of a University Navigator Ministry. As a result of personal discipleship he went on to study at Columbia Biblical Seminary (M.A., Columbia, SC, 1990), as well as receive a Ph.D. in education and philosophy... read more