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Summary: In this chapter God brings a charge of disobedience against Israel (v. l). The religious leader had replaced true worship of God with ritual prostitution. The nation had gone down hill spiritually and morally, breaking the laws God had given to them. The

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THOUGHTS ABOUT THE PASSAGE:

He made free use of Christian vocabulary. He talked about the blessing of the Almighty and the Christian confessions which would become the pillars of the new government. He assumed the earnestness of a man weighed down by historic responsibility. He handed out pious stories to the press, especially to the church papers. He showed his tattered Bible and declared that he drew the strength for his great work from it as scores of pious people welcomed him as a man sent from God. Indeed, Adolf Hitler was a master of outward religiosity—with no inward reality! (Today in the Word, June 3, 1989)

In this chapter God brings a charge of disobedience against Israel (v. l). The religious leader had replaced true worship of God with ritual prostitution. The nation had gone down hill spiritually and morally, breaking the laws God had given to them. The people found it easy to condemn Hosea’s wife for her adultery but they were not so quick to see they had been unfaithful to God.

God explained the reasons for Israel’s suffering. There is not always a cause and effect relationship between our actions and the problems we face. However, the lawless behavior of Israel had brought them judgement by increased violence and an ecological crises. God pointed out that even murder was being taken casually in Israel (v. 2).

It is easy for us to blame others if we fear punishment for our wrongdoing. Hosea warned the priests not to blame others because the nation’s sins were largely their fault. Israel’s priests were quick to point out the people’s sins, but God would not allow them to overlook their own sinful actions. Instead of instructing the nation in religion and morality, they were leading them toward idolatry and immorality. Every time a person brought a sin offering, the priest received a portion of it. The more the people sinned the more the priest received (v. 7). Therefore instead of trying to lead the people away from sin, they encouraged sin so they would receive more.

APPLICATION:

The fact that God will not allow me to blame others for my mistakes should cause me to deal with my sins head-on. I need to be careful that I’m not a hypocrite but responsible for my own actions.


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