In Hosea 5:8-9 then Hosea tells the people that it is time to sound the alarm. The people are in danger! What is the danger? GOD is the danger. He writes, “Blow the ram’s horn in Gibeah, the trumpet in Ramah! Cry aloud at Beth Aven, ‘Look behind you, O Benjamin!’ Ephraim shall be desolate in the day of rebuke; among the tribes of Israel I make known what is sure.” Listen to this – “Blow the trumpet, cry aloud, look behind you!” Danger, Will Robinson! This is the equivalent of a fire alarm blaring! All too often these days we hear alarms and we figure that they have been set off by mistake or a malfunction – I mean how many people actually think a car alarm going off means a car is being burglarized or stolen? But Hosea is clear. This is not a false alarm.

Judgment is coming upon Israel. It is sure. It is certain. It will be devastating. It will bring desolation, literally, “a waste, an appalling horror.” We cannot understate this. Hebrews 10:31 reminds us, “It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.” James 5:9 says, “Behold, the Judge is standing at the door!” These things should terrify us! God the Judge is holy, perfect, and just. His wrath is pure. Our God is a consuming fire (Heb. 12:29). Nahum 1:6 declares, “Who can stand before His indignation? And who can endure the fierceness of His anger? His fury is poured out like fire, And the rocks are thrown down by Him.” Malachi 3:2, “But who can endure the day of His coming? And who can stand when He appears? For He is like a refiner’s fire And like launderers’ soap.”

There is so much about our lives and about this world that we think are truly great. But let’s look at God for just a moment. Look at Him. Listen to Isaiah chapter 40. Before Him, “the nations are as a drop in a bucket, and are counted as the small dust on the scales; look, He lifts up the isles as a very little thing. 16 And Lebanon is not sufficient to burn, nor its beasts sufficient for a burnt offering. 17 All nations before Him are as nothing, and they are counted by Him less than nothing and worthless. 18 To whom then will you liken God? Or what likeness will you compare to Him? 19 The workman molds an image, the goldsmith overspreads it with gold, and the silversmith casts silver chains. 20 Whoever is too impoverished for such a contribution chooses a tree that will not rot; he seeks for himself a skillful workman to prepare a carved image that will not totter. 21 Have you not known? Have you not heard? Has it not been told you from the beginning? Have you not understood from the foundations of the earth? 22 It is He who sits above the circle of the earth, and its inhabitants are like grasshoppers, Who stretches out the heavens like a curtain, and spreads them out like a tent to dwell in. 23 He brings the princes to nothing; He makes the judges of the earth useless. 24 Scarcely shall they be planted, scarcely shall they be sown, scarcely shall their stock take root in the earth, when He will also blow on them, and they will wither, and the whirlwind will take them away like stubble. 25 “To whom then will you liken Me, or to whom shall I be equal?” says the Holy One. 26 Lift up your eyes on high, and see who has created these things, Who brings out their host by number; He calls them all by name, by the greatness of His might and the strength of His power; not one is missing. 27 Why do you say, O Jacob, and speak, O Israel: “My way is hidden from the Lord, and my just claim is passed over by my God”? 28 Have you not known? Have you not heard? The everlasting God, the Lord, the Creator of the ends of the earth, neither faints nor is weary. His understanding is unsearchable. 29 He gives power to the weak, and to those who have no might He increases strength. 30 Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall, 31 But those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint.”

We always focus on verse 31 there and the benefit that this is to us – but let us be clear, when we renew our strength and mount up with wings as eagles, it is not because of us but because of Christ in us. The point here is not us – it is HIM. It is God. See Him there high and lifted up. We have too low a view of God and too high a view of self. As Ravenhill preached, we have humanized God, deified man, and minimized sin. We need a Godward focus – see Him! See Him there stretching out the universe like a curtain. See Him sitting as Sovereign who is neither surprised by our actions nor subjected to our whims. HE IS THE LORD GOD. And He is coming and bringing righteous judgment with Him. For the lost the view of the returning Christ should be terrifying!

When Jesus tells us to pray that the Lord would send workers into the harvest, it is not because people are ripe for conversion, it is that the harvest means the wrath of God and time is short!

See Him in Revelation 14:14-20, “14 Then I looked, and behold, a white cloud, and on the cloud sat One like the Son of Man, having on His head a golden crown, and in His hand a sharp sickle. 15 And another angel came out of the temple, crying with a loud voice to Him who sat on the cloud, “Thrust in Your sickle and reap, for the time has come for You to reap, for the harvest of the earth is ripe.” 16 So He who sat on the cloud thrust in His sickle on the earth, and the earth was reaped. 17 Then another angel came out of the temple which is in heaven, he also having a sharp sickle. 18 And another angel came out from the altar, who had power over fire, and he cried with a loud cry to him who had the sharp sickle, saying, “Thrust in your sharp sickle and gather the clusters of the vine of the earth, for her grapes are fully ripe.” 19 So the angel thrust his sickle into the earth and gathered the vine of the earth, and threw it into the great winepress of the wrath of God. 20 And the winepress was trampled outside the city, and blood came out of the winepress, up to the horses’ bridles, for one thousand six hundred furlongs.”