It’s been a while.
I was watching a sermon by Judah Smith, one of my favorite pastors, and I was prompted to write a post on here about what he spoke about.
He was speaking about the story of Hosea.
Hosea was a prophet of God, he was to deliver the word of the Lord to the people. One day, God spoke to Hosea and told him to do something unbelievable. God told him to marry a prostitute. Yes, to go find a prostitute named Gomer and marry her and love her and have children with her. That is what he was called to do in his life. I want to stop right there and point out something. This right here and a picture of God’s love for us. God, who is our Hosea, chose to love us, a prostitute of sorts. He has chosen us, a people who sell themselves to every sort of other god imaginable. We sell ourselves to our jobs, school, boyfriends, girlfriends, husbands, wives, technology, the internet, friends, money, and countless other things. We sell our souls to these things, putting them far above God on our list of things that are important. And in doing that, we turn our backs on God, but God, being far greater than any of those things, still chose to love us.
The story continues… Hosea marries Gomer and they have a life together, they have three kids and things seem to be going reasonably well. Then one day Hosea wakes up to find Gomer gone. She has returned to her old ways and left Hosea with the three kids. And you know what God tells Hosea to do? In Hosea 3:1, “And the Lord said to me, ‘Go again, love a woman who is loved by another man and is an adulteress, even as the Lord loves the children of Israel, though they turn to other gods and love of cakes of raisins.” God tell Hosea to go get his wife…and he does it. He goes and finds his wife. AND HE BUYS HER BACK. In Hosea 3:2 it says, “So I bought her for fifteen sheckels of silver and a homer and a lethech of barley.” Hosea goes and buys his wife back. She is being sold for sex and he pays the ransom for her. Not only does he do that, but he redeems her, he renews their vows right there. Hosea 3:3 says, “And I said to her, ‘ You must dwell as mine for many days. You shall not play the whore, or belong to another man; so will I also be to you.” Hosea redeems Gomer.
This is such a beautiful picture of God’s love for Israel and by extension, us. He made man in the Garden of Eden, he loved man and for love to be true there must be choice, so God gave man the free will to decide to love him back, but man chose not to. Humankind chose to go after the things of the world, the fruit of knowledge of good and evil. Man ran after the things of the world, choosing them over God. God, in His infinite grace and love, redeemed us. He sent His Son to pay the ransom. Jesus was our fifteen shekels of silver and a homer and a lethech of barley. And He continues His promise to love us. He redeemed us when we were naked and broken and ugly and gross.
And then, because of His great love for us, we are to go out and be Hoseas. God took us, when we were Gomers, and made us into Hoseas so that we could go out and pull others out of their prostitution. We are Hosea for other people, we show them God and God redeems them. This is so beautiful!
I hope this spurs you to want to be Hosea for someone as much as it does for me.