Hi friends, today we continue our read through Hosea, and yes, it continues to be a little "pointed" in it's language. The excessive usage of prostitute laments leads me to believe this was a time when the Israelites were getting mixed in with temple prostitution leading to issues at home. I haven't been able to find a source specifically saying that, so take that with a grain of salt. Anyways, let's dive into Hosea's lessons for Israel!
Scripture to Read
Questions to Consider
What does this teach me about God?
What does this teach me about humanity?
What parts of the Bible previously read does this remind me of?
What does this teach me about faith and repentance?
- My Thoughts -
I hadn't noticed this much until I looked into commentaries but Hosea is primarily critical of the priestly class, his references to Gilead, Schem, and Ephraim are references to groups of priests. He calls the priests a group of liars, bandits, and murderers. He also calls them adulterers with passionate energies, but in all the wrong places. He cites God as saying "you never called on me" What? A priest never called on God? That clearly shows the "church" and "nation" (I quote these because the church and state were a single entity) was in a bad place.
But we still have some of that today. How often do we see cases of a business failing leaving dozens/hundreds of people without jobs because a CEO failed to run the business intelligently. Or how many churches with decades of history are closed because of a bad pastoral call/appointment? The person in charge should be held accountable for the progress they are making on a yearly basis, of course, but I think within a church domain a pastor should also be accountable to how they are spiritually growing as well. What practices are they doing each day? When is the last time they meditated on scripture, hummed a hymn, or just spent time with God? I know for myself before I started this journey with you all I considered this "stuff to do in my 'spare' time" which meant rarely, if ever! I'm a PASTOR who put EMAILS above the BIBLE. *facepalm* But, I'm not the only one. Many if not most of our pastors would lament the same confession if asked.
We cannot expect any church to grow if the pastor is not constantly seeking the heart of God. We can not expect our business' to grow if our leaders aren't passionately learning about the cutting edge developments. How can you give permission to your work/spiritual leaders to take more time for their visioning and discernment? How can you give yourself more time for that each day?
UMH 128 - He Leadeth Me O blessed Thought
He leadeth me, O blessed thought!
O words with heav'nly comfort fraught!
Whate'er I do, where'er I be
Still 'tis God's hand that leadeth me.
He leadeth me, He leadeth me,
By His own hand He leadeth me;
His faithful foll'wer I would be,
For by His hand He leadeth me.
Sometimes 'mid scenes of deepest gloom,
Sometimes where Eden's bowers bloom,
By waters still, o'er troubled sea,
Still 'tis His hand that leadeth me.
Lord, I would place my hand in Thine,
Nor ever murmur nor repine;
Content, whatever lot I see,
Since 'tis my God that leadeth me.
And when my task on earth is done,
When by Thy grace the vict'ry's won,
E'en death's cold wave I will not flee,
Since God through Jordan leadeth me.