A Daughter Named: No Compassion - Dave's Daily Devo - September 21


A Daughter Named: No Compassion

Hosea 1:6-7

With our three sons growing up and getting married, the Lord has evened the score between sons and daughters in the extended Wyrtzen household. But in the beginning, Mary and I had three sons, and then we will never forget the night our daughter was born. With all J’s--Jonathan, Joel, and Josh, Mary misheard James Dobson speak of “Denae,” jumped on the “J.” We named her, Jenae 

It’s a female version of the biblical name “John,” meaning the “LORD is gracious.” It expresses perfectly how Mary and I felt when the LORD gave us our first daughter. That’s what makes the prophecy of Hosea so tough. When Gomer’s baby girl was born, God told Hosea to name the baby, “No Compassion.”

We learned yesterday about God naming Hosea’s first son, Jezreel, with its horrific reminders of intense judgment and bloodshed in Israel’s history. Today’s text increases the tension and the stress upon God’s unrelenting judgment even more. 

“Gomer conceived again and gave birth to a daughter. The LORD said to Hosea, ‘Call her name ‘No Compassion’ because I will no longer continue to show parental compassion toward the House of Israel that I should at all forgive them. Yet I will show parental compassion to Judah, I, the Lord their God, and it will not be by bow, sword or battle, or by horses and horsemen.” Hosea 1:6-7

Talk about tension! Why would the Lord command Hosea to name his baby girl Lo-ruhamah, No Compassion? Why would He stress that He’s certainly not going to forgive the Northern Kingdom, yet He will forgive the Southern Kingdom of Judah? 
These prophecies were made around 750 BC at the beginning of Hosea’s prophetic ministry, near the end of Jeroboam II’s long and prosperous reign. It’s a full 28 years before Israel is destroyed by the Assyrians and Judah is spared. Why is Judah forgiven and preserved while Israel is destroyed? I’m tempted to quickly run to 2 Kings 17 and 18, get the historical details, and the writer of Kings explanations for what happened in 722 BC. But maybe we should wait and allow the text of Hosea answer these questions. 

For now, we have some strong, mostly unanswered questions. Why the command for the Lord’s prophet to marry an immoral woman? Why the horrible names for his children? Why will Judah receive forgiveness and deliverance while Israel remains unforgiven and destroyed? 

LORD, this text so far reveals your intense judgment with strong questions about why you are so upset. Help me not to be too quick to resolve the tension. Help me to listen to what you have to say about sin and judgment.    

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