Summary: We look at Hosea & Gomer, their typology representing God and believers who forsake Him, the importance of marital love, and a recommitment to love each other faithfully.
THE GREATEST LOVE STORY
Hos. 1:2-3; 2:2,5; 3:1-5
1. A college student, between semesters, was home for the weekend, and watched TV from morning till night. His mother finally said, “How about you fold the laundry?”
2. To which he replied, “Mom, I’m much too tired for that! Did you know that my heart beat 103,389 times today; my blood travelled 168,000 miles, I breathed 23,000 times, I inhaled 483 cubic feet of air, I moved 750 major muscles, and I exercised 7 million brain cells? I’m exhausted and I’m going to bed!”
3. Then there was the college student who dropped off his car at the mechanic’s shop because the driver’s window motor went out, and it wouldn’t go up or down.
4. The mechanic called, nonchalantly, to tell him to come pick up his car; the part to fix it would be back-ordered for 2 weeks.
5. The college student was distressed. “You don’t understand,” he said. “Everything I eat comes through that window!”
1:2 When the Lord began to speak through Hosea, the Lord said to him, “Go, marry a promiscuous woman and have children with her, for like an adulterous wife this land is guilty of unfaithfulness to the Lord.” 3 So he married Gomer daughter of Diblaim, and she conceived and bore him a son.
2:2 “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. 5 She said, ‘I will go after my lovers, who give me my food and my water, my wool and my linen, my olive oil and my drink.’
3:1-4 3 The Lord said to me, “Go, show your love to your wife again, though she is loved by another man and is an adulteress. Love her as the Lord loves the Israelites, though they turn to other gods and love the sacred raisin cakes.”
2 So I bought her for [6 oz.] of silver and [430 lbs] of barley.
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 behave the same way toward you.”
C. AN OBJECT LESSON
1. The story about Hosea & Gomer(800 B.C.) is the story of a girl who wasn’t satisfied with her lot in life. Many a lady has been out with one guy, but catching the eye of every man in the room.
2. Hosea, a famous Prophet, was told to marry a woman who’d been a prostitute. The purpose of this strange command? God wanted to create a real-life, heart-breaking object lesson, a kind of “street-theater” to illustrate Israel’s unfaithfulness to God.
3. Israel wasn’t interested in hearing a Word from God, but like a lot of people today, they liked juicy gossip and shocking inside stories.
4. Imagine the scandal that this marriage created; “Famous Minister Marries Convicted Las Vegas Call Girl!” People must have talked far & wide. “How can that prophet love that devil-woman?” “How can she love a man who’s got no more self-respect than he’s got?” The real question is, “How can God love people like us?”
5. God wanted this drama played out to demonstrate to them 3 things (and to us as well):
a. The Broken Heart of God over Sin.
b. The Greatness of God’s Grace;
c. God’s Pursuing & Bringing us back to Himself.
6. Title: “The Greatest Love Story.”
I. THE BROKEN HEART OF GOD
1. For some years Hosea’s home was happy and godly. Two boys and a girl were born. Talk around town stopped, except in reference to the kid’s strange names; “Judgment,” “No more Mercy,” and “Not My People.” Each name was prophetic of Israel.
2. Then tragedy struck. Hosea came home one day to find his wife and all her possessions gone. Word soon came to him that she had gone back to her former profession and other lovers. She began selling herself to whoever could pay the price.
3. Imagine the pain, humiliation and grief that must have tormented this man. Scalding tears must have streamed down his face. He couldn’t sleep, he had a knot in his stomach, didn’t eat, was dejected; it was worse than death.
4. His love and trust (like a flower) had been crushed under her feet. His name was dragged in the gutter. His children were devastated by her abandonment.
B. HOSEA’S STORY = GOD’S STORY
1. Just as Hosea grieved over the sins of Gomer, God grieves over our sins! Gen. 6:6 says, “The Lord regretted that he had made human beings on the earth, and his heart was deeply troubled [KJV – ‘grieved’].” When Jesus was here, He wept (Jn. 11:35), grieved, & hurt. God is a Person, not a force.