The beginning of a devotional study of:
HOSEA- A DIVINE BITTERSWEET LOVE STORY
The Prophet’s Resume
One of my colleagues at Southern Bible is leading the pulpit-search committee for his church. In the hallway after a faculty meeting, I asked him how it was going. “It’s been a job just going through the resumes of all the applicants. Then after narrowing down the field, we have to invite candidates to come. It can be a long, slow process.”
Almost all the applicants he talked about had seminary degrees, some even doctorates, and most had experience in the pastorate. Today as we begin to study the inspired writings of the Prophet Hosea, I can’t help but think of how a pastoral search committee would respond to his personal resume.
When it came to his marriage, his wife left him and slept around with several other men. Her immorality made it tough for him to even figure out which of his kids were his and which came from her other partners. Ask him about his ministry experience and he would have to confess that only a small remnant listened, and an even smaller group obeyed.
When he first received his call from the Lord, he was living in the Northern Kingdom of Israel in the time of Jeroboam II who ruled from approximately 793-753 BC, an unprecedented period of wealth and prosperity, good times not experienced since the time of Solomon. The prosperity caused the majority of the population, including the religious leadership, to laugh at Hosea’s predictions of divine judgment. But when the Assyrians invaded and destroyed Israel in 722 BC, Hosea’s predictions came true. He not only predicted judgment, but he also preached about a future time of glorious restoration, and this restoration is still in even our future. In his day his audience didn’t listen, but we still have the opportunity to hear God’s voice and find the source of true faithfulness and love.
When I begin to read a book, I use Google to find out everything I can about the author. Hosea actually tells us little about himself because the real source of his words is God, and we will discover that Hosea has a lot to say about Yahweh’s marriage, family, children, and Nation.
“The Word of the LORD that came to Hosea, the son of Beeri during the reigns of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah, kings of Judah, and during the reign of Jeroboam son of Jehoash, king of Israel.” Hosea 1:1
This book takes us back to the 8th century BC in Northern Israel, but from the list of the kings of Judah referred to in this introduction, we can see that Hosea is going to have a lot to say about the Southern Kingdom of Judah as well.
LORD, it’s not Hosea’s resume that astonished me as much as the fact that this BOOK reveals that you are the One with the unfaithful wife, the illegitimate kids, and a family that for the most part rejects you. Teach me again through Hosea’s writings about your gracious covenant love that judges but keeps on loving in the midst of life’s biggest betrayals.
For more from Dave Wyrtzen please visit TruthEncounter.com!