Morning Bible Study
Pastor Chuck’s Memorial Service – simulcast here
in the sanctuary or watch online.
Movie 5-paks from Thursday night. $20 each, including the Hosea movie and the Gospel of John.
In the days of Hosea, Israel was a divided kingdom. (Play Hosea map clip)
The southern kingdom was known as Judah after the largest tribe.
The northern kingdom was called either Israel, Ephraim (the largest tribe)
or Samaria (the capital city). The
border between the two nations ran just south of the city of Bethel.
Hosea ministered to the people of the northern kingdom.
1:1 Hosea’s Time
:1 The word of the Lord that
came to Hosea the son of Beeri, in the days of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah, kings of Judah, and in the days
of Jeroboam the son of Joash, king of Israel.
:1 Hosea the son of Beeri
In the Bible, names often carry importance or meaning, unlike our modern
Hosea – Howshea
:1 in the days of Uzziah,
Jotham, Ahaz, and
These are the kings of the southern kingdom of Judah who reigned during
Hosea’s ministry, and this gives us the scope of his time period.
Hosea lived at the time of the fall of the northern kingdom. His ministry
was to warn the nation of the coming judgment, and the judgment would come
during his ministry.
:1 Jeroboam the son of Joash
Hosea’s ministry began at the end of the reign of Jeroboam II.
Even though there are six kings who reign after Jeroboam II during Hosea’s
lifetime, they are not mentioned by name.
Jeroboam had reigned 41 years over the northern kingdom. Even though he is
called an “evil” king, as all the northern kings were, he did bring prosperity
and actually enlarged the northern kingdom.
Though the northern kingdom had material prosperity they were spiritually
Messages about coming judgment might sound pretty unlikely.
Yet during Hosea’s ministry, (play Assyrian map clip) the Assyrians would
begin to pick off major cities one at a time.
Hazor and Damascus would fall in 734 BC. Megiddo would fall in 732 BC. In 722 BC, the rest of the northern kingdom
would fall to the Assyrians.
1:2-9 Hosea’s messy family
:2 When the Lord
began to speak by Hosea, the Lord
said to Hosea: “Go, take yourself a wife of harlotry And children of harlotry,
For the land has committed great harlotry By departing from the Lord.”
:2 take yourself a wife of harlotry
Hosea is asked to go marry a gal who was a prostitute. And he’s supposed to
have children with her, children who may or may not be his biological children.
Hosea is asked to do this because his life will be a living picture of
God’s relationship with His people.
Hosea will be representing God. God
has a “marriage”, a connection with His nation of Israel. God’s people have been unfaithful to Him like
How will God treat these people who have been unfaithful?
The Illustrated Bible
Hopefully we aren’t asked to do what Hosea had to do, but like it or not,
our lives are God’s favorite way of showing the world what He is like. When some people would question how good
Paul’s ministry was among the Corinthians, he wrote,
(2 Co 3:3 NLT) Clearly,
you are a letter from Christ showing the result of our ministry among you. This
“letter” is written not with pen and ink, but with the Spirit of the living
God. It is carved not on tablets of stone, but on human hearts.
They say a picture is worth a thousand words. Some people prefer picture books to words on
a page. Your life is those pictures.
Your life may be the only Bible that some people will ever
For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head
of the church; and He is the Savior of the body. Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ, so let
the wives be to their own husbands in everything.
that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of
water by the word,
:3 So he went and took Gomer the daughter of Diblaim, and she conceived and bore him a son.
:3 he went and took Gomer
Gomer = “complete”
I wonder if she looked like … Gomer Pyle…
:4 Then the Lord
said to him: “Call his name Jezreel, For in a little while
I will avenge the bloodshed of Jezreel on the house
of Jehu, And bring an end to the kingdom of the house of Israel.
– Yitzr@‘e’l – “God
Sometimes a prophet will name his child because the name itself means something,
but here the importance of Jezreel is not the meaning
of the name.
(Play Jezreel map clip)
Jezreel was the name of a city where wicked King
Ahab had his summer house.
It would be the place where one of Ahab’s captains, Jehu, would kill Ahab’s
son and wife, Jezebel, and eventually wipe out all the descendants of Ahab.
That’s the bloodshed that would be avenged.
Jezreel was also the name of the valley where the
city of Megiddo was.
:5 It shall come to pass in that day That I will
break the bow of Israel in the Valley of Jezreel.”
:5 break the bow of Israel in … Jezreel
“breaking the bow” speaks of
breaking the military might of a nation.
The current king of the northern kingdom, Jeroboam II, was the third
generation after Jehu and was about to die. When Jeroboam’s son, Zechariah
comes to power, he would only rule for six months before being killed (2Ki.
Not only would there be a change in dynasties, but Megiddo, the city that
sits on a bluff overlooking the valley would fall to the Assyrians in 732 BC.
Trivia note: The valley of Jezreel is also the
location of the future battle of Armageddon (which is not fulfilled by this
:6 And she conceived again and bore a daughter.
Then God said to him: “Call her name Lo-Ruhamah,
For I will no longer have mercy on the house of
Israel, But I will utterly take them away.
– Lo’ Ruchamah –
The name could also be translated, “not
loved”, a pretty tragic name to be giving your baby.
She is a reminder that that God would have no mercy on Israel.
:7 Yet I will have mercy on the house of Judah,
Will save them by the Lord their
God, And will not save them by bow, Nor by sword or battle, By horses or
mercy on … Judah
Even though the northern kingdom would be wiped out by the Assyrians, the
southern kingdom was not. When the army of the Assyrians came against Hezekiah
God promised to save the city. The people trusted the Lord. They prayed. And
God sent an angel that wiped out 185,000 Assyrians in a single night (Isa.
:8 Now when she had weaned Lo-Ruhamah,
she conceived and bore a son.
:9 Then God said: “Call his name Lo-Ammi, For you are not My people, And I will not be
– Lo’ ‘Ammiy –
“not my people”
It kind of makes me wonder if Hosea was unsure if he was the father of this
child or not. What would people think when they asked Hosea what the boy’s name
was and he answered, “not my people”, which would seem like he’s saying, “not my
1:10 – 2:1 Hope
:10 “Yet the number of the children of Israel
Shall be as the sand of the sea, Which cannot be measured or numbered. And it shall come to pass In the place where it was said to
them, ‘You are not My people,’ There it shall be said to them, ‘You
are sons of the living God.’
:11 Then the children of Judah and the children of
Israel Shall be gathered together, And appoint for themselves one head; And
they shall come up out of the land, For great will be the day of Jezreel!
:11 Shall be gathered together
There will be a day when Israel would not be divided into two kingdoms, but
would be united as one nation, after God gathers the Jews back into their land
:11 great will be the day of Jezreel
Perhaps this might even be talking about the battle of Armageddon (which takes
place in the valley of Jezreel) when the nations of
the world are gathered together to fight against the coming Messiah. God is the one who wins and evil is defeated.
2:1 Say to your brethren, ‘My people,’ And to your sisters, ‘Mercy is
There would be a day when the “not my people” would be called “my people”,
and where “no mercy” will find mercy.
God’s not finished
Sometimes all we can think about is how we’ve failed God. It’s hard to see
past the guilt and condemnation.
But God isn’t finished with you yet. He certainly isn’t finished with the
nation of Israel.
We have promises that remind us that God is still working on us:
(Php 1:6 NKJV) being
confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will
complete it until the day of Jesus Christ;
Keep going. Don’t give up. God hasn’t given up on you yet.
2:1-13 The Divorce
:2 “Bring charges against your mother, bring
charges; For she is not My wife, nor am I her Husband! Let her
put away her harlotries from her sight, And her adulteries from between her
:2 Let her put away her harlotries
It is often the case nowadays that after the kids are born, that a wife
might go back to work. Apparently Gomer
has gone back to work… as a prostitute.
The pain of betrayal
Some of you know what it is like to have been betrayed by the one you love
Hosea is experiencing what God has been going through as His people have
walked away from Him and have pursued other “gods”.
This is what God experiences when we walk away from Him.
Do you remember the mess when it came out that vice presidential candidate
John Edwards had been having an affair?
Edwards Pain clip.
Elizabeth Edwards described the agony she experienced when she learned of
her husband's infidelities:
After I cried, and screamed, I went to the bathroom and
threw up. And the next day John and I spoke. He wasn't coy, but it turned out
he wasn't forthright either. I felt that
the ground underneath me had been pulled away.
For those of you who know the pain of betrayal, God knows exactly what you
have gone through.
:2 Bring charges
Hosea is speaking the legal language of divorce.
He has a valid reason to divorce Gomer, just as God had a valid reason to “divorce”
What we’re going to read is going to blur the lines between what is
happening between Hosea and Gomer and what is happening between God and Israel.
:3 Lest I strip her naked And expose her, as in the day she was born, And
make her like a wilderness, And set her like a dry land, And slay her with
:4 “I will not have mercy on her children, For
they are the children of harlotry.
:5 For their mother has played the harlot; She who
conceived them has behaved shamefully. For she said, ‘I will go after my
lovers, Who give me my bread and my water, My
wool and my linen, My oil and my drink.’
:5 I will go after my lovers
Israel’s other “lovers” were the other gods they worshipped instead of
:6 “Therefore, behold, I will hedge up your way
with thorns, And wall her in, So that she cannot find her paths.
:7 She will chase her lovers, But not overtake
them; Yes, she will seek them, but not find them. Then she will say, ‘I
will go and return to my first husband, For then it
was better for me than now.’
:7 I will go and return to my first
Just like the backslidden Christian who gets into trouble and realizes they
were better off when they followed the Lord.
:8 For she did not know That I gave her grain, new
wine, and oil, And multiplied her silver and gold— Which they prepared
:8 Baal – “lord”
Though this was the name of the chief god of the Canaanites, the word
itself means “lord” or “owner” and sometimes can refer to a husband.
:9 “Therefore I will return and take away My grain
in its time And My new wine in its season, And will take back My wool and My
linen, Given to cover her nakedness.
:10 Now I will uncover her lewdness in the sight
of her lovers, And no one shall deliver her from My hand.
:11 I will also cause all her mirth to cease, Her
feast days, Her New Moons, Her Sabbaths— All her appointed feasts.
:12 “And I will destroy her vines and her fig
trees, Of which she has said, ‘These are my wages that my lovers have
given me.’ So I will make them a forest, And the
beasts of the field shall eat them.
:13 I will punish her For the days of the Baals to which she burned incense. She decked herself with
her earrings and jewelry, And went after her lovers;
But Me she forgot,” says the Lord.
:13 I will punish her
Sometimes we have loved ones who behave badly, and we do everything we can
to keep them from experiencing the consequences of their actions.
Sometimes when we “rescue” someone we end up helping them stay trapped in
There is a place for mercy – we will be seeing that in Hosea, but we need
to be careful not to get in the way of when God wants to make things difficult
for people as a natural consequence of their bad behavior.
I am learning that in some cases, jail is a good thing.
They may cry and scream and tell you that you don’t love
them, but sometimes the loving thing is to let them experience the consequence
of their actions.
The trouble you will get into is when you allow the consequences to come because
of your anger. Sometimes we enjoy their
pain too much…
Our goal is to see things be done in love.
This is the way that God chastises us.
He sometimes allows trouble to come our way so we will wake up and turn
(Heb 12:5–6 NKJV) —5 And you
have forgotten the exhortation which speaks to you as
to sons: “My son,
do not despise the chastening of the Lord, Nor be
discouraged when you are rebuked by Him; 6 For whom
the Lord loves He chastens, And
scourges every son whom He receives.”
It’s because of His love that He allows us to experience
Sometimes we need to learn to back away and allow people
to experience the trouble, the consequences of their sins, not out of anger,
but out of love.
:14 “Therefore, behold, I will allure her, Will
bring her into the wilderness, And speak comfort to her.
:15 I will give her her
vineyards from there, And the Valley of Achor as a
door of hope; She shall sing there, As in the days of her youth, As in the day
when she came up from the land of Egypt.
:15 the Valley of Achor
as a door of hope
“Valley of trouble”
From trouble to hope
The valley got its name with a man named Achan (Josh
7) had stolen and hidden evil forbidden property during the conquest of Jericho
in the days of Joshua. The Israelites
had suffered a defeat because of Achan’s hidden
sin. They punished Achan
by stoning him, and called the valley “Achor” because
Achan had “troubled” Israel, and so they “troubled”
When you are in “trouble” because of your sin, you have choices to make.
If you make the right choices and choose to turn away from your sin and to
deal with your sin, then you will find a door of “hope” at the end of the
(Heb 12:11 NKJV) Now no
chastening seems to be joyful for the present, but painful; nevertheless,
afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been
trained by it.
:16 “And it shall be, in that day,” Says the Lord, “That you will call Me ‘My
Husband,’ And no longer call Me ‘My Master,’
:16 My Husband – ishi – man, husband
:16 My Master – ba’ali – master, lord
There are actually times (like here) when God (Yahweh) is referred to as “ba’al”. But here the
point is that the people will stop confusing the worship of Ba’al
with the worship of Yahweh. They won’t
ever use Ba’al again.
Perhaps for Hosea and Gomer there will be a transition in their
relationship as well. Perhaps they will
go from Hosea being her “master” to her “husband”. A “husband” is always preferable in a
marriage to a “master”.
:17 For I will take from her mouth the names of
the Baals, And they shall be remembered by their name
:18 In that day I will make a covenant for them
With the beasts of the field, With the birds of the air, And with the
creeping things of the ground. Bow and sword of battle I will shatter from the
earth, To make them lie down safely.
:19 “I will betroth you to Me forever; Yes, I will
betroth you to Me In righteousness and justice, In lovingkindness
:20 I will betroth you to Me in faithfulness, And
you shall know the Lord.
:20 betroth … know
These are words of intimacy.
“Betroth” speaks more than just engagement.
It speaks of a new beginning between a man and a woman, between a person
“Know” is same word to describe the physical relationship between a man and
a woman. It’s what results in children. Adam “knew” his wife Eve and she became
pregnant (Gen. 4:1).
This is a picture of a new marriage.
They are starting over.
:21 “It shall come to pass in that day That
I will answer,” says the Lord; “I
will answer the heavens, And they shall answer the earth.
:22 The earth shall answer With grain, With new
wine, And with oil; They shall answer Jezreel.
:23 Then I will sow her for Myself in the earth, And I will have mercy on her
who had not obtained mercy; Then I will say to those who were not My
people, ‘You are My people!’ And they shall say, ‘You are my
:23 I will have mercy
Mercy is here
The daughter “No mercy” will now be called “Mercy”. The son “Not-my-people” will be called “My
Paul quotes this verse (Rom. 9:25-26) to remind his readers that God will
one day have compassion on the nation of Israel. God hasn’t given up on them.
And her beloved, who was not beloved.”‘You are not My people,’There they shall be called sons of the living God.”
God hasn’t given up on you either.
It’s like He wants to “adopt” you.
like adoption video clip
Loving others unconditionally is not just “generous”, it is what “mercy” is all about.
Perhaps today is the day for you to come back to the Lord.
There is love waiting for you.