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The Scriptorium

Blessings Withdrawn

Blessings abused become blessings lost.

Hosea 2

Week 3, Wednesday: Judgment reaches as far as sin

Israel had taken all the good gifts of God and devoted them to the false gods of the surrounding pagan nations. They continued in this for many generations, finally provoking the wrath of God, precisely as He had promised. In pronouncing judgment against His people, God announces that His wrath will reach as far as all their sins. He is sovereign, and His people, who refused to acknowledge this with gratitude and praise, will have to learn it the hard way.

Read Hosea 2

Meditate on Hosea 2.9-13

1.  How many different aspects of Israel’s life would be affected by the judgment of God? What does this reveal to us about the sovereignty of God? About what He is looking for in the life of faith?

2.  Israel “forgot” the Lord (v. 13). But, as we shall see, the people claimed to “know” the Lord (cf. Hos. 8.2). How could they “know” the Lord and yet “forget” Him at the same time?

3.  Review 1 Kings 12.15-33. At this time in Israel’s history, the people were still “worshiping” God. But how can you tell that this probably wasn’t going to last? If you’d been an advisor to Jeroboam I, what might you have said to him?

4.  The message is clear: Compromise with God’s Word leads to capitulation to false gods, corruption of life and culture, and calamity by the hands of God’s wrath. The calamity doesn’t always come right away, and capitulation and corruption can sometimes take a while. But compromise should be easy enough to recognize and redress. How could you tell if you or your church were compromising God’s Word in any ways (cf. Acts 17.11)?

5.  God’s judgment sometimes takes a while, as He begins withdrawing (v. 9) the blessings His people have abused. What might be some warning signs suggesting that you or your church had entered the process of God’s judgment?

We owe everything to God – our lives, our wellbeing, our possessions, work, families, freedoms, daily bread, and everything else. When we take our blessings for granted, we will also begin to take God for granted. This is when we begin to drift from Him into the false gods of our secular age. What would you suggest as an effective way of checking this tendency?

Closing Prayer
As for me, I will call upon God,
And the LORD shall save me.
Evening and morning and at noon
I will pray, and cry aloud,
And He shall hear my voice.
He has redeemed my soul in peace from the battle that was against me,
For there were many against me.

Psalm 55.16-18

T. M. Moore

The Week, T. M.’s weekly print and audio offering of worldview insights, musings, and reflections, is now available for a free subscription. You can subscribe to The Weekby going to the website and, when the pop-up appears, put in your email, click on The Week, then click to update your subscriptions. You’ll be sent an email allowing you to add The Weekto your list of subscriptions.

Each week’s studies in our
Scriptorium column are available in a free PDF form, suitable for personal or group use. For all available studies in Hosea, click here.

A primary theme of the book of Hosea is Israel’s failure to keep covenant with the Lord. God’s covenant is a central theme and provides the organizing motif for all of Scripture. Learn more about God’s covenant by ordering a copy of T. M.’s book,
I Will Be Your God, from our online store (click here).

Scripture taken from the New King James Version. © Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

T.M. Moore

T. M. Moore is principal of The Fellowship of Ailbe, a spiritual fellowship in the Celtic Christian tradition. He and his wife, Susie, make their home in the Champlain Valley of Vermont.
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