Hosea’s Context: Hosea began his ministry during the height of Israel’s prosperity, and was likely a contemporary of Isaiah and Amos. The nation’s fortunes, however, would worsen through the successive failures of numerous kings. Over thirty years, Hosea proclaimed God’s message to a people who neglected the revelation of God and ignored the call to covenantal faithfulness.
Hosea’s Message – Theological Theme(s): The structure of Hosea’s message reveals three primary themes. First, Hosea presents evidence demonstrating Israel’s guilt (cf. covenant lawsuits in 2:4-17 & 4:1-19). Second, he announces immediate consequences for willful rebellion. Finally, the prophet assures his audience that the LORD will reconstruct and reconcile a remnant of people. This promise, however, will not take place immediately or in the near future, but at a later stage in redemption history.
Hosea’s message is unique in two respects. First, he pays an incredible price for his calling to ministry. His marriage becomes a living illustration of Israel’s unfaithfulness to the LORD. The ministry of proclamation was one of immense pain and profound personal suffering in Hosea’s life. However, he was chosen to illustrate the Lord’s faithfulness to an unfaithful people. His pursuit of Gomer is a vivid illustration of God’s immense love for His people.
Second, Hosea’s message contains seven blessings, which provide hope amid apostasy and judgment. Describe the blessings in the following texts:
- Hosea 1:10-2:1:
- Hosea 2:14-23:
- Hosea 3:5:
- Hosea 6:1-3:
- Hosea 10:12:
- Hosea 11:8-11:
- Hosea 14:1-8:
Significance of Hosea’s Message for Christians:
1. There is ample evidence to establish our guilt and unfaithfulness to God.
2. There are consequences for willful rebellion against God.
3. God’s uncommon love toward believers was demonstrated and applied in the sacrificial and substitutionary death of His Son, Jesus Christ.
Hosea 2:14 – 3:1 (ESV) “Therefore, behold, I will allure her, and bring her into the wilderness, and speak tenderly to her. 15 And there I will give her her vineyards and make the Valley of Achor a door of hope. And there she shall answer as in the days of her youth, as at the time when she came out of the land of Egypt. 16 “And in that day, declares the Lord, you will call me ‘My Husband,’ and no longer will you call me ‘My Baal.’ 17 For I will remove the names of the Baals from her mouth, and they shall be remembered by name no more.18 And I will make for them a covenant on that day with the beasts of the field, the birds of the heavens, and the creeping things of the ground. And I will abolish the bow, the sword, and war from the land, and I will make you lie down in safety. 19 And I will betroth you to me forever. I will betroth you to me in righteousness and in justice, in steadfast love and in mercy. 20 I will betroth you to me in faithfulness. And you shall know the Lord. 21 “And in that day I will answer, declares the Lord, I will answer the heavens, and they shall answer the earth, 22 and the earth shall answer the grain, the wine, and the oil, and they shall answer Jezreel, 23 and I will sow her for myself in the land. And I will have mercy on No Mercy, and I will say to Not My People, ‘You are my people’; and he shall say, ‘You are my God.’” 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 cakes of raisins.”
Hosea in the New Testament
Hosea New Testament
11:1 Matthew 2:15
6:6-7 Matthew 9:13, 12:7
10:8 Luke 23:30
1:10/2:23 Romans 9:25-26
13:14 1 Corinthians 15:55