Hosea 2:2-3:5 Comments by Stephen Ricker
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Go Show Your Love to Your Wife
Comments for Study 2

Hosea 2:2-3:5
Memory Verse: 23

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I. The Lord's Judgment of Israel (2:2-13)

>1. What are the children of the adultery to proclaim to their mother? (2)

* Hosea 2:2 "Rebuke your mother, rebuke her, for she is not my wife, and I am not her husband. Let her remove the adulterous look from her face and the unfaithfulness from between her breasts."

* "not my wife" -The marriage was broken b unfaithfulness, but reconciliation was sought not divorce.

* "I am not her husband" -The love relationship between the Lord and Israel is depicted as a husband and wife relationship.

* "Let her remove the adulterous look" -The wife could be reunited with the husband if she only stop her adulterous ways. Israel committed adultery by seeking idols.

* "unfaithfulness from between her breasts" -The sign of intimacy and affection, an embrace near the heart.

* Idolatry in Old Testament times was more than giving offerings and bowing down to cut stone, carved wood, or formed metal. Idolatry often involved acts and rituals, some not so wholesome and others simply brutal. To serve and idol meant giving up time and expenses. Often a person's mind, heart and passion were part of their devotion to the idol. Many people say that idolatry has been done away with in modern times, no one bows to an idol. Considering all that was just written, this is not the case. Many people idolize sport teams and players, movies and actors, musicians and singers, clubs and organizations, fashion and beauty, cars and other man made items. The list can go on and one. Personalize the definition. What do you spend time and money doing? What do you love to do? What do you think most about? What or who do you love? Reverse it. Do you spend time with Jesus in prayer? Do you tithe? Do you love Jesus? Do you think a lot about Jesus and his word? Do you spend time with his people? Do you study his word?

* Paul also pleaded for Israel and Judah (calling them Jews) to return to the Lord. (Romans 9:1-5, 10:1-2)

>What will happen if they don't? (3)

* Hosea 2:3 "Otherwise I will strip her naked and make her as bare as on the day she was born; I will make her like a desert, turn her into a parched land, and slay her with thirst."

* "Otherwise" -If there is no reconciliation, no repentance on Israel's part then consequences will follow.

* "I will strip her naked" -The husband supplied the wife's clothing (Exodus 21:10; Ezekiel 16:10) and here her unfaithfulness was exposed (Jeremiah 13:26; Ezekiel 16:10)

* "make her bare" -When the Lord found Israel in Egypt she had nothing and were slaves. (Ezekiel 16:4-8; Nahum 3:5) All they had came from him and his blessings. From a spiritual point of view the same is true when the Lord found us.

* "desert" -A sign of fruitlessness and incapable of bearing fruit.

* Every person has a chose. Even after we come to hear the good news we still have choices to make. Will we serve the Lord or not? Do we obey his or not? Do we seek him or not? Jesus said, "If you love me you will obey my commands." And "Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends. You are my friends if you do what I command." (John 15:13-14) Do you lay down your life to Jesus? Consider Israel and all they had been given and yet did not return the Lord's love by keeping the covenant.

Death Valley

* See a picture of Death Valley California to the right.

>What happened to the children of the adultery? (4)

* Hosea 2:4 "I will not show my love to her children, because they are the children of adultery."

* "children of adultery" -Their descendants will not be blessed. They will not be called "sons" of the Lord. (1:10; 11:1)

* Parents who do not love the Lord with all their heart, mind, soul, and strength can end up with children of disobedience. The parents actions around their children is very important. Parents who live righteous lives are a good influence. Parents who live in sin are a bad influence. Children learn the good and bad habits of parents. Satan tries to pull children away from their parents, especially righteous parents. I just recently heard a national TV news broadcaster saying, "The idea that children belong to the parents is old and outdated. Children belong to society." This is the evil talk that brings down all who follow it. The family unit is the bedrock of society. A parent who loves and serves the Lord Jesus is the bedrock of the family.

>2. What was the motive to break the marriage vow? (5)

* Hosea 2:5 "Their mother has been unfaithful and has conceived them in disgrace. She said, 'I will go after my lovers, who give me my food and my water, my wool and my linen, my oil and my drink.'"

* "unfaithful" -Broken faith is equated with breaking the covenant. Paul wrote that we live by faith. (Romans 1:17; 2 Corinthians 5:7) Everyone should examine their lives to see if they live by faith or if they have broken faith. The old hymn states, "Trust and obey, for there's no other way, to be happy in Jesus, but to trust and obey."

* "conceived them in disgrace" -Elsewhere our actions are called fruit. (Isaiah 5:2; Ezekiel 17:8) Jesus said, "Make a tree good and its fruit will be good, or make a tree bad and its fruit will be bad, for a tree is recognized by its fruit." (Matthew 12:33)

* "I will go after" -The wife was chasing other men.

* "my lovers, who give me" -The wife believed that the other men loved them because they gave her gifts. When gifts giving and receiving are equated with love, then is it really love? The worship of Baal, a Canaanite deity, included the hope of good harvests. Baal worship was similar to Santa Claus. Do you want gifts? Believe in Baal and he will give you gifts. Some people see Christianity the same way. "Do you want wealth? Jesus will make you wealthy," is sometimes preached. Such beliefs equates the Lord with vending machines. Put money in and get good things out. "Give me, give me, give me," is not a relationship with Jesus. What happens when finical troubles come? Will you give up on Jesus?

* What kind of marriage is based on gift giving? And yet how many advertisement indicates true love is in expensive gifts. Such marriages end when financial trouble comes. Why do most marriages argue about? Money and finances are the most common argument in marriages and divorce. Children are either ignored, used to gain money through child support, or only one of the parents truly love the children.

>What was done to stop her from adultery? (6)

* Hosea 2:6 "Therefore I will block her path with thorn bushes; I will wall her in so that she cannot find her way."

* "find her way" -The Lord stopped Israel from finding her way to her lovers. The Lord did not punish her with death. (Deuteronomy 22:21; Ezekiel 16:39-40; Nahum 3:5-7) Rather he isolated her, cut her off from receiving gifts from others.

* The Lord God is a jealous God, (Exodus 20:5) not a vicious God.

Thorn bushes

* See a picture of thorn bushes to the right.

>When she could not find what she set out, what did he decide to do? (7)

* Hosea 2:7 "She will chase after her lovers but not catch them; she will look for them but not find them. Then she will say, 'I will go back to my husband as at first, for then I was better off than now.'"

* "chase" -A cultic term elsewhere the Hebrew word is translated "press on" or "purse". (6:3; 8:3; 12:1)

* "her lovers" -idols

* "go back" -repent.

* "my husband" -The Lord.

* "I was better off than now" -Life with the Lord is not bad. A life of faith involves tests and trials. Abraham was tested and when he passed the test the Lord said, "Now I know that you love me." Not that the Lord didn't know, but when he obeyed the Lord Abraham expressed his love for the Lord. Thus the trials and the tests are not bad. Rather, they are an opportunity to express our love for the Lord.

* Jesus told a parable of two sons. One stayed with the father and the other left wanting to spend his share of the inheritance in wild living. Eventually, after losing all his wealth the one who left said, "How many of my father's hired men have food to spare, and here I am starving to death! I will set out and go back to my father and say to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me like one of your hired men.'" (Luke 15:17-19)

* Pleasures and allurements of the world are temporary. (Hebrews 11:24-26)

>3. What did she forget? (8)

* Hosea 2:8 "She has not acknowledged that I was the one who gave her the grain, the new wine and oil, who lavished on her the silver and gold-- which they used for Baal."

* "I was he one" -The Lord provided her with everything, not the idols.

* "silver and gold" -When they left Egypt the Egyptians gave them silver and gold. When they entered the promised land they received the Canaanites silver and gold. when the kingdom grew David and Solomon was given silver and gold from surrounding former enemies. The Israelites used this silver and gold to make idols.

* "Baal" -The Canaanite god who was believed to control the weather and the fertility of crops, animals and man. (Judges 2:13)

* "which they used for Baal" -The New Berkeley Version reads, "which they made into a Baal". The Living Bible reads, "That she used in worshipping Baal, her god."

* Ingratitude is a cause as well as a symptom of backsliding. (2:8)

>What was the response of her husband? (9)

* Hosea 2:9 "Therefore I will take away my grain when it ripens, and my new wine when it is ready. I will take back my wool and my linen, intended to cover her nakedness."

* "Therefore" -Because of their sins and a lack of repenting when they were warned.

* "my grain... my new wine... my wool... my linens" -They were actually the Lord's not the Israelites. The money we make is actually the Lord's. All we have comes from the Lord and belongs to the Lord.

* "intended to cover her nakedness" -The Lord provided out of love and understanding. When Adam and Eve sinned he provided clothes for them to cover their shame too. (Genesis 3:21) They lost the glory of the Lord when they spiritually died. This was shameful and they tried to hid it with leaves. So in love the Lord covered their same.

* Clothing is a metaphor of love that covers. Jesus' blood does not cover our sins, it cleanses our sin. (1 John 1:7) Not that the liquid has power, but his love is displayed in his sacrifice for us, a sacrifice of his pain and death.

>Why might the Lord expose Israel's lewdness? (10)

* Hosea 2:10 "So now I will expose her lewdness before the eyes of her lovers; no one will take her out of my hands."

* "expose her" -When her lovers see her with nothing they will not want her. She had nothing for the Lord took it back. Her lovers did not love her, only her goods.

* "no one will take her out of my hands" -An act of love. Jesus said, "My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father's hand. I and the Father are one." (John 10:27-30)

* Israel will learn that the Lord was the only one who loved her. He loved her not of anything she had. Her lovers did not love her, only her wealth.

>4. What would he do to the feasts he gave Israel? (11)

* Hosea 2:11 "I will stop all her celebrations: her yearly festivals, her New Moons, her Sabbath days--all her appointed feasts."

* "stop all her celebrations" -In exile they will not be able to have them, not even the celebrations in regard to Baal worship.

* "her yearly feasts" -Not the Lord's yearly feasts.

* "her New Moons" -A monthly celebration on the day the new moon is first seen.

* "her Sabbath days" -They would not see rest in exile.

* "all her appointed feasts" -See link above.

>Will Israel be allowed to eat from the Lord's gift to her? (12)

* Hosea 2:12 "I will ruin her vines and her fig trees, which she said were her pay from her lovers; I will make them a thicket, and wild animals will devour them."

* "the pay from her lovers" -The harlot's pay. (9:1; Deuteronomy 23:18; Ezekiel 20:8-11; Micah 1:7) Israel attributed her agricultural products to the false gods she worshiped, rather than than to the Lord.

* "wild animals will devour them" -The fruit of the plants not the people.

* When Job lost his wealth, children and then health he said, "The Lord gave. The Lord has taken away. May the name of the Lord be praise." (Job 1:21)

>What could no longer be avoided for unfaithful Israel? (13)

* Hosea 2:13 "I will punish her for the days she burned incense to the Baals; she decked herself with rings and jewelry, and went after her lovers, but me she forgot," declares the LORD."

* "the days" -Festival days.

* "Baals" -Israel had set up many idols throughout the nation.

* "me she forgot" -Wealth can make a person forget the Lord.

* Putting time, effort, and money into other things can lead a person to eventually forget the Lord. Jesus taught "No servant can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and Money." (Luke 16:13)

II. The Lord's Restoration of Israel (2:14-23)

>5. During the time of punishment what will the Lord do? (14)

* Hosea 2:14 "Therefore I am now going to allure her; I will lead her into the desert and speak tenderly to her."

* "Therefore" -As a result of.

* "I am" -The Lord will do this.

* "going to allure her" -Allure means to attract with flattery and persuasive speech.

* "lead her into the desert" -The Lord lead Israel out of Egypt and into the desert, to Mount Sinai. There he was betrothed to her. The Lord will do this once again in the middle of the seven years of tribulation. (19-20)

* God's love is truly great. Though Israel did all the evil described in this book the Lord still loves them. He is the same with us now. Even though we fall to temptation and sin he will forgive us. Peter denied Jesus three times and yet the Lord loved him. David committed adultery and had her husband killed to hide the sin and save himself. The Lord forgave him. This is love; Jesus died so we could have a relationship with him.

* Romans 11:25-27 "I do not want you to be ignorant of this mystery, brothers, so that you may not be conceited: Israel has experienced a hardening in part until the full number of the Gentiles has come in. And so all Israel will be saved, as it is written: "The deliverer will come from Zion; he will turn godlessness away from Jacob. And this is my covenant with them when I take away their sins." \

>What will be the result? (15)

* Hosea 2:15 "There I will give her back her vineyards, and will make the Valley of Achor a door of hope. There she will sing as in the days of her youth, as in the day she came up out of Egypt."

* "There" -in the desert

* "give her back" -A renewal of the marriage.

* "Valley of Achor" The Hebrew word "akhor" means "trouble" or "troubling". The valley south of Jericho. It was originally named this because of the trouble brought on by Achor's sin of stealing some of the plunder of Jericho, all of which was to be for the Lord. (Joshua 7:1, 20-21, 25-26) Through God's grace the valley of trouble is transformed into a door of hope. (Isaiah 65:10)

* All of Israel will have a second chance.

* The Lord can turn your valley of Achor (suffering) into a door of hope too.

* Some believe that when Israel is betrayed by the Antichrist half way through the seven year contract they will quickly leave Jerusalem and pass through this valley, the valley of hope.

Valley of Achor

* See a picture of the valley of Achor to the right.

>What does "in that day" mean?

* "In that day" -"In the last days" and "in that day" and "the day of the Lord" all referred to the future from the Old Testament prophets' point of view. They all referred to events concerning Jesus' first and second coming. The day of the Lord is the time when God reveals His sovereignty over human powers and human existence.

* Seven Old Testament prophets (Isaiah 13:6,9; Ezekiel 13:5, 30:3; Joel 1:15; Amos 5:18,20; Obadiah 1:15; Micah 4:1; Zephaniah 1:7,14; Malachi 4:5; perhaps Zechariah 14:1 too) uses the term "the day of the Lord". Sometimes they abbreviated it to "that day". It was familiar to their audience, a term by which the audience expected light and salvation (Amos 5:18), but the prophets painted it as a day of darkness and judgment (Isa. 2:10-22; 13:6,9; Joel 1:15; 2:1-11,31; 3:14-15; Amos 5:20; Zeph. 1:7-8,14-18; Mal. 4:5). The Old Testament language of the day of the Lord is aimed at warning sinners among God's people of the danger of trusting in traditional religion without commitment to God and to His way of life. It is language that could be aimed at judging Israel or that could be used to promise deliverance from evil enemies (Isa. 13:6,9; Ezek. 30:3; Obad. 15). The day of the Lord is thus a point in time in which God displays His sovereign initiative to reveal His control of history, of time, of His people, and of all people.

* Eschatology is the teaching concerning the last things in world history. The Greek word "eschatos" means "lasts" or "final". Accordingly, eschatology is the study of the things expected to occur at the end of history. This does not include what will happen after the Lord Jesus creates the new heaven and the new earth as described at the end of Revelation.

>What will happen and what will Israel forget? (16-17)

* Hosea 2:16-17 "In that day," declares the LORD, "you will call me 'my husband'; you will no longer call me 'my master.'" I will remove the names of the Baals from her lips; no longer will their names be invoked."

* "you will call" -Future tense.

* "my husband" -In Hebrew "Ishi". Israel will remarry the Lord Jesus.

* "my master" -In Hebrew "Baali" means "my-Baal-master". The two phrases here is a play on words. There will be such a vigorous reaction against Baal worship that this Hebrew word for "master" will no longer be used of the Lord.

* "I will remove" -Only the Lord can cure us from sin. Only the Lord can remove sin and the affects of sin. Only the Lord can change and renew a heart.

Wedding under canape

* See a wedding under a canape to the right.

>6. When will verse 18 be fulfilled?

* Hosea 2:18 "In that day I will make a covenant for them with the beasts of the field and the birds of the air and the creatures that move along the ground. Bow and sword and battle I will abolish from the land, so that all may lie down in safety."

* "I will make a covenant" -The Lord is going to do with for Israel, his people.

* "beasts... birds... creatures" -Animal life will be changed by the working of the Lord. Man's relationship with animals was originally man being the master and the animals were under his care. When man's sin increased in the time of Noah the Lord stated, "The fear and dread of you will fall upon all the beasts of the earth and all the birds of the air, upon every creature that moves along the ground, and upon all the fish of the sea; they are given into your hands. Everything that lives and moves will be food for you. Just as I gave you the green plants, I now give you everything." (Genesis 9:2-3) When Jesus comes again he will amend the relationship between man and animal.

* Isaiah 11:6-9, 65:25 were written at the same time as Hosea 2:18.

* "Bow and sword and battle I will abolish from the land" -War is terminated. Isaiah 2:4 states, "He will judge between the nations and will settle disputes for many peoples. They will beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation will not take up sword against nation, nor will they train for war anymore."

* "so that all may lie down in safety" -When Jesus rules there is peace and safety. People in the world cry, "Peace and safety". But there will be none till he comes and rules. (Jeremiah 33:16; Ezekiel 34:24-28)

>What kind of a relationship will we have with the Lord then? (19-20)

* Hosea 2:19-20 "I will betroth you to me forever; I will betroth you in righteousness and justice, in love and compassion. I will betroth you in faithfulness, and you will acknowledge the LORD."

* "I will" -The Lord will initiate the love relationship.

* "betroth"

* "in righteousness and justice, in love and compassion... in faithfulness" -Rather than money, these five traits necessary to the covenant relationship make up the bride-price. (Exodus 22:16-17; Deuteronomy 22:23-29; 1 Samuel 18:25; 2 Samuel 3:14)

* "you will acknowledge the LORD" -A response to what he does for us. The Hebrew for this word can refer to intimate marital relations (Genesis 19:8; Numbers 31:17-18, 35), but is also refers to active acknowledgement of a covenant partner.

* Romans 7:2-4 stated, "For example, by law a married woman is bound to her husband as long as he is alive, but if her husband dies, she is released from the law of marriage. So then, if she marries another man while her husband is still alive, she is called an adulteress. But if her husband dies, she is released from that law and is not an adulteress, even though she marries another man. So, my brothers, you also died to the law through the body of Christ, that you might belong to another, to him who was raised from the dead, in order that we might bear fruit to God."

* Under the covenant of the law a marriage commitment to the law was made. We make a commitment. This commitment is only for life. After death the commitment breaks.

* All are married to the law. But when they die in Christ their bond to the law is broken. Now we are married (betrothed is a better term) to Jesus, the great bridegroom.

* If a marriage to Mrs. Law is a bad one then Mrs. Law condemns us and/or visa-versa. Then we have a low self esteem for the other and ourself. This is our conscience.

>7. What else in prophesied about Jesus' reign in verses 21-22?

* Hosea 2:21-22 "In that day I will respond," declares the LORD-- "I will respond to the skies, and they will respond to the earth; and the earth will respond to the grain, the new wine and oil, and they will respond to Jezreel."

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III. The Faithful Husband (3:1-5)

>8. What did the Lord tell Hosea to do so he would understand what the Lord just said he would do for Israel? (1)

* Hosea 3:1 "The LORD said to me, "Go, show your love to your wife again, though she is loved by another and is an adulteress. Love her as the LORD loves the Israelites, though they turn to other gods and love the sacred raisin cakes."

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>Did he obey?

* Hosea 3:2 "So I bought her for fifteen shekels of silver and about a homer and a lethek of barley."

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>Why would he need to buy her and what can we learn about what the Lord did for us?

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>9. What agreement did Hosea set with his unfaithful wife? (3)

* Hosea 3:3 "Then I told her, "You are to live with me many days; you must not be a prostitute or be intimate with any man, and I will live with you."

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>How is this like the relationship we now have with Jesus?

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>10. How does verse 4 reveal the northern tribes' generations following Hosea?

* Hosea 3:4 "For the Israelites will live many days without king or prince, without sacrifice or sacred stones, without ephod or idol."

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>What is predicted to happen?

* Hosea 3:5 "Afterward the Israelites will return and seek the LORD their God and David their king. They will come trembling to the LORD and to his blessings in the last days."

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>What can be learned of the discipline and love of the Lord?

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