By: Autumn Sisk
“When the Lord began to speak through Hosea, the Lord said to him, 'Go take to yourself an adulterous wife and children of unfaithfulness, because the land is guilty of the vilest adultery in departing from the Lord.' So he married Gomer daughter of Diblaim, and she conceived and bore him a son.” Hosea 1:2-3 (NIV)
I recently read a great novel based on the story of Hosea and Gomer from the verses above. Hosea was a prophet, or messenger from God to His people, Israel. God told Hosea to find a wife who was a known prostitute.
Why would God ask His messenger to do such a thing?
I often wondered this until recently. He wanted to use Hosea’s personal life as an example to the people.
Here’s how the story goes: God told Hosea to marry a prostitute and have children with her, and commanded him to never leave her no matter what she did. Hosea did this, and then Gomer ran away from him. She returned to her former life, had children by other men, and treated Hosea like dirt.
But God told Hosea, "Go show your love to your wife again, though she is loved by another and is an adulteress. Love her as the Lord loves the Israelites, though they turn to other gods..." (Hosea 3:1, NIV) Hosea loved Gomer very much and obeyed God's command to never divorce her. In the end, Hosea proved to Gomer that he truly loved her and rescued her from her adulterous lifestyle.
Hosea’s experience shows us that God’s love for us never dies. No matter what we do, or how terribly we treat Him, God's love remains. Even if we forget about Him and turn to other things, He actively seeks us out and pursues a relationship with us, just as Hosea did with Gomer.
At times, I am judgmental toward others who break rules or rebel because I am a rule-follower. When I read Hosea and Gomer’s story, I thought to myself, "Whatever. I would just let her go away and find myself a wife who wasn't a rebellious prostitute!"
Then, I realized that even though I’m not a prostitute, I have many times run from God's love. Even if you are a rule-follower like me, you have turned away for other things at some point. We hurt our Savior deeply just like Gomer hurt Hosea deeply when she left him for other men. This makes me sad to think I've hurt my God with my carelessness.
Now, I appreciate God so much more because I can see how deep His love is for all people, not just rule-followers like me.
Dear Lord, I now understand better Your love for me. Thank You for the story of Hosea and Gomer. Thank You also for loving me despite my sins and shortcomings. In Jesus' name, Amen.
Ponder: Romans 8:38-39, “For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (NIV)
Apply: Read the book of Hosea in the Bible. Pray and ask God to show you where you need to forgive others as well as yourself. Ask God to forgive you for times when you have turned away from Him.
Read: (For our readers over the age of 16)
Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers
Share: Have you ever been hurt by a relationship?
© 2010 by Autumn Sisk. All rights reserved.
Autumn Sisk lives in Atlanta, Georgia and has been a competitive tennis player since high school. She enjoys leading a Bible study for teenage girls and wants to one day visit Jerusalem. Autumn grew up on a dairy farm and remembers helping her dad milk the cows. Her favorite Bible verse is Colossians 3:17 because knowing how much Jesus loves her inspires her to live her life for Him.
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