Summary: Hosea calls for repentance (vv. 1-3) and God promises restoration (vv. 4-8). God had to punish Israel for its gross and repeated violation of His law, but He would do so with a heavy heart. The preceding chapters have painted a very drab picture (v. l). N
THOUGHTS ABOUT THE PASSAGE:
Thomas Jefferson founded the University of Virginia. The misbehavior of students led to a riot in which professors who tried to restore order were attacked. The following day a meeting was held between the university’s board, of which Jefferson was a member, and defiant students. Jefferson began by saying, “This is one of the most painful events of my life,” suddenly he was overcome by emotion, and burst into tears. Another board member asked the rioters to come forward and give their names. Nearly every one did. Later, one of them said, “It was not Mr. Jefferson’s words, but his tears.” Just like the student was moved by Jefferson’s brokenness, so is God by ours. When we are truly broken and sorry for our sins, this leads to repentance (Source Unknown)
Hosea calls for repentance (vv. 1-3) and God promises restoration (vv. 4-8). God had to punish Israel for its gross and repeated violation of His law, but He would do so with a heavy heart. The preceding chapters have painted a very drab picture (v. l). Now the prophet instructs them to return to God and seek His forgiveness (v. 2). This is always the requirement for the backsliden if restoration is to take place. "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness" (l John 1:9). The nation has used its lips to praise the idolatrous "calves;" now it needs to use its lips to praise God.
God promises to heal their backsliding. His anger will be turned from Israel because they have repented (v. 4). He promises to be "as the dew unto Israel" and this will result in her growing as a "lily" and putting down roots like the cedars of Lebanon which were known for their durability (v. 5). The scar and stench of idolatry will be removed from the land (v. 7). In turning to God Israel will completely forsake its idols and will render fruit to God like a green fir tree (v. 8). With renewed vision and revived determination Israel anticipates better days. In conclusion, the testimony of the entire prophecy is that "the ways of the Lord are right" and those who are right with Him will heed the words of this prophecy and prosper.
The people in Hosea’s day could turn to God by asking Him to forgive their sins. The same is true for me. I should never hesitate to come to Him for a clean slate.