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The Scriptorium

Restoration Dramatized

Hosea's marriage, front and center.

Hosea 3

Week 3, Sunday: Hosea’s marriage and God’s

What Hosea is instructed to do in these verses must have been most uncommon. Adultery and fornication were so common in Israel that probably no one thought Gomer’s wandering worthy of note. Or was Hosea’s persisting in making his marriage “work” as God intended, so extraordinary in his day, that people would have wondered about why he pursued his wayward wife? Either way, the message was larger than Hosea’s marriage, though he would know the blessings of God there as well.

Read Hosea 3

Meditate on Hosea 3.1-5

1.  Gomer, Hosea’s wife, must have fallen into adultery, since she seems to have abandoned Hosea and the children and taken up with another man. Put yourself in Hosea’s shoes, who has by this time begun to understand the nature of God’s relationship with Israel. How do you suppose he must have felt upon hearing God’s command in verse 1?

2.  Hosea’s bringing Gomer back into his home would have been a demonstration of faithfulness and love to shame even the crudest Israelite. How would the example of Hosea’s obedient love complement the message He was preaching to the people of his day?

3.  Notice that Hosea had to pay to recover his wayward wife (v. 2). What does this suggest about the condition Gomer must have been in when he finally found her? Does this act of redemption give Hosea the right to insist that Gomer live with him faithfully (v. 3)? Explain. What does he promise her?  

4.  To what period of Israel’s history does verse 4 refer? In the light of God’s promised restoration, how do you think this absence of king, prince, temple, ceremonies, or priest would have made faithful Israelites feel?

5.  In verse 5, the word “afterward” and the phrase “in the latter days” (Hebrew: achar; acharith hayomim) would have cued up, at least for people in Judah, sermons by both Isaiah and Micah (cf. Is. 2.1ff and Mic. 4.1ff). What time period is referred to here? Who is “David” promised by the Lord to rule as “their king”? What will be the response of the people in those days?  

Hosea’s preparation comes to an end (chapters 1-3). Both by his life and his words he will bear powerful witness to God’s covenant relationship with Israel, and how God is planning to unfold that covenant in the days to come and for the future. What can we learn from Hosea’s preparation about what it means to be a witness for the Lord?

Closing Prayer
O God, do not be far from me;
O my God, make haste to help me!
Let them be confounded and consumed
Who are adversaries of my life;
Let them be covered with reproach and dishonor
Who seek my hurt.
But I will hope continually,
And will praise You yet more and more.
My mouth shall tell of Your righteousness
And Your salvation all the day,
For I do not know their limits.
I will go in the strength of the Lord GOD;
I will make mention of Your righteousness, of Yours only.

Psalm 71.12-16

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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