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TherHosea 1e is a message of hope even in the message of judgment. It is the same as the original curse for sin, in Genesis 3:15, “And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her Seed; He shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise His heel.”

God here is promising to keep the Covenant with Abraham. Remember, He told Abraham that He would make his descendants as many as the sands of the sea. Innumerable. And the good news is that we are included in that number as Paul tells us we are descendants of Abraham by faith!

Romans 9:6-8, “For they are not all Israel who are of Israel, 7 nor are they all children because they are the seed of Abraham; but, “In Isaac your seed shall be called.” 8 That is, those who are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God; but the children of the promise are counted as the seed.” And Romans 4:13 “For the promise that he would be the heir of the world was not to Abraham or to his seed through the law, but through the righteousness of faith.” And “16 Therefore it is of faith that it might be according to grace, so that the promise might be sure to all the seed, not only to those who are of the law, but also to those who are of the faith of Abraham, who is the father of us all 17 (as it is written, “I have made you a father of many nations”) in the presence of Him whom he believed—God, who gives life to the dead and calls those things which do not exist as though they did.”

What good news – so often we think that there are so few who believe and follow Jesus, yet He tells us that the number of those who are His children can only be numbered by Him!

God here is assuring the people that He will honor His covenant with Abraham, even as there are threats of judgment, of being scattered, and of mercy drying up, and of the people for a time being disowned. With all of this there is the promise that God will remain faithful even when and especially when His people are not faithful.

Think about the sins of Israel here. They had other gods they were worshipping, and idols and images. They were taking God’s name in vain, defiling His worship to the point that Amos says that God hates their worship altogether. They are defaming the Sabbath. In every way they are breaking the commands of God. The First Tablet of the Law, the first 4 of the Ten Commandments, they were living in direct opposition and rebellion to God’s Law.

At some point then, verse 11 tells us that Israel will be unified and they will have one head. Who can this be? This is Jesus! This is the Messiah. Remember, again, what does Paul say about Israel? When Christ returns, Romans 11:26 “And so all Israel will be saved, as it is written: ‘The Deliverer will come out of Zion, and He will turn away ungodliness from Jacob; 27 For this is My covenant with them, when I take away their sins.’” In fact, when Hosea says, “and they shall come up out of the land, for great will be the day of Jezreel!” the phrase there for “come up out of the land” is a reference to the same word as was used for “to scatter”. Remember it is a flip of the hand that can mean to throw something away, or to sow seed. God has sown seed that will grow, the gospel that will show that where there once was judgment now there will be life and growth.

The people were hearing and seeing a message here – you have been unfaithful, you have committed spiritual adultery, you have broken the covenant, but here is a picture of God seen in Hosea, and He will keep His covenant promises. “Say to your brethren, ‘My people,’ and to your sisters, ‘Mercy is shown.’” We see a reversal of the meaning of their names.

Where then does this remnant come from? Where are they regathered from? These are those who hear the call and obey the gospel who are members not of the Old Covenant that has failed but of the New Covenant which Christ has kept on our behalf.

Just as with Israel so it is with us – there was a time we were children of wrath, not mercy. There was a time we were not His people. It is what we read in Acts 2 this morning, “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 For the promise is to you and to your children, and to all who are afar off, as many as the Lord our God will call.”

And also in Ephesians 2, “11 Therefore remember that you, once Gentiles in the flesh—who are called Uncircumcision by what is called the Circumcision made in the flesh by hands— 12 that at that time you were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world. 13 But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ.”

We were “dead in trespasses and sins, 2 in which you once walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience, 3 among whom also we all once conducted ourselves in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, just as the others.”

 “And you He made alive.”

God is making a point with the family of Hosea, but the point goes beyond judgment for sin. It is a point found even in the prophet’s name. Hosea. Salvation. In light of the consequences for sin, there is the hope of salvation. His name is also Salvation. His name is Jesus.

Join us next week as we look at Hosea chapter 2 and “The Hedge of Thorns.”

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