The people of Samaria must bear their guilt, because they have rebelled against their God. They will fall by the sword; their little ones will be dashed to the ground, their pregnant women ripped open.” (Hosea 13:16 NIV)
As Hosea completes his case against Israel he makes a final plea for them to return to God. This verse in Hosea seems completely inconsistent with God’s character, and it is. This is an accurate description of what is going to happen in Israel when God removes His presence, His love, and His protection. If it is possible, the Assyrians are more evil than the Israelites. When God removes Himself, the Assyrians will come in and this is an accurate description of what will happen. It is not a pretty picture and unfortunately it was not enough to motivate Israel to repent.
“I will heal their waywardness and love them freely, for my anger has turned away from them. I will be like the dew to Israel; he will blossom like a lily. Like a cedar of Lebanon he will send down his roots; his young shoots will grow. His splendor will be like an olive tree, his fragrance like a cedar of Lebanon. (Hosea 14:4-6 NIV)
There is hope. There will come a time when God’s love will restore Israel and they will become a strong and mighty people who bring glory to their God. I think this is God’s intent for all people. When we honor Him, He will make a difference in the world through us.
If you want to live well,
make sure you understand all of this.
If you know what’s good for you,
you’ll learn this inside and out.
GOD’s paths get you where you want to go.
Right-living people walk them easily;
wrong-living people are always tripping and stumbling. (Hosea 14:9 MSG)
The book of Hosea began with a vivid living picture of how much God loves His people. The bulk of the book was spent making sure we understand what pleases and displeases God. This was a difficult book to read and write through. I’m glad it is done.
For my grandchildren:
Follow God. He will take you where your really want to go.