Summary: God invites Hosea to dive into God’s own heart by entering into a relationship which he knows will be Unreciprocal. God wants Hosea to love someone—not just marry them, but Love them!—in the knowledge that his love will not be returned.

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Hosea was a young preacher in the nation of Israel, the Northern Kingdom, and he was a contemporary of the prophets ISAIAH and AMOS. He lived, as we are told in the first verse, during the reigns of UZZIAH – JOTHAM – AHAZ - HEZEKIAH (kings of Judah, the Southern Kingdom), and during the reign of JEROBOAM, the son of JOASH, the king of Israel.

Jeroboam was one of the wicked kings of Israel and the nation was going through a difficult time when Hosea was preaching. People were “living it up” as we might say, and didn’t have much time for God. They wouldn’t have said that, of course, because nobody ever says that when it’s true!

• The people were busy doing other things

• Did not have time for God

• The spirit was willing but the flesh was ready for the weekend

So God commissions this Young Preacher. It is important that I take a few minutes to introduce us to this Young Minister, for those of you that have not had the pleasure of meeting this Young Preacher by studying the pages of the Old Testament. Hosea was his name and preaching was his game! God called Hosea to be a herald—that is, a prophet who proclaims God’s Word. He did this in the northern kingdom of Israel from the years 750-725 B.C. Just as the young preacher was beginning his prophetic ministry, God came to him and said –

• Hosea, beside every great preacher stands a great preacher’s wife!

• So Hosea decides to go down to the local Bible College and find himself a preacher’s wife

Things were no different then, than they are today. Young preachers typically don’t need any extra encouragement to find a wife. So Hosea puts on his clergy collar, his favorite pair of Stacey Adams - rushed to the local seminary, sits in the Lobby, the commons and gazed out over a sea of suitable young SHEPHERDESSES. They all had long hair tied up in buns; their modest ankle length denim skirts complemented the purity of the glow of golden halos hovering above their heads.

• They were all triple majors

• Bibles under their arms

• Piano playing

• Choir singing

• Bible Quoting

• Sunday school teaching Sisters

Hosea’s heart began to pound as he pondered the possibilities, but each time he pointed, Maybe that one that sings so beautifully, we can marry and she can sing in the choir – Maybe that one with the pretty hair who is playing the Piano, we can marry and she can be our musician - Oh, Lord, maybe that one by the bookshelf, she is so pretty and intelligent, we can marry and she can be the announcement clerk - God said, “No not that one.” He went through every girl in the commons, but God did not give his approval.

• Then God says Hosea, I want you to look across the street

• God drew his attention to the other side of the street

• There stood a woman who obviously wasn’t a Bible college student

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