HOSEA‬ ‭1:2-11‬‬‬

“When the Lord first began speaking to Israel through Hosea, he said to him, “Go and marry a prostitute, so that some of her children will be conceived in prostitution. This will illustrate how Israel has acted like a prostitute by turning against the Lord and worshiping other gods.” So Hosea married Gomer, the daughter of Diblaim, and she became pregnant and gave Hosea a son. And the Lord said, “Name the child Jezreel, for I am about to punish King Jehu’s dynasty to avenge the murders he committed at Jezreel. In fact, I will bring an end to Israel’s independence. I will break its military power in the Jezreel Valley.” Soon Gomer became pregnant again and gave birth to a daughter. And the Lord said to Hosea, “Name your daughter Lo-ruhamah—‘Not loved’—for I will no longer show love to the people of Israel or forgive them. But I will show love to the people of Judah. I will free them from their enemies—not with weapons and armies or horses and charioteers, but by my power as the Lord their God.” After Gomer had weaned Lo-ruhamah, she again became pregnant and gave birth to a second son. And the Lord said, “Name him Lo-ammi—‘Not my people’—for Israel is not my people, and I am not their God. “Yet the time will come when Israel’s people will be like the sands of the seashore—too many to count! Then, at the place where they were told, ‘You are not my people,’ it will be said, ‘You are children of the living God.’ Then the people of Judah and Israel will unite together. They will choose one leader for themselves, and they will return from exile together. What a day that will be—the day of Jezreel—when God will again plant his people in his land.”

Hosea‬ ‭1:2-11‬ ‭NLT‬‬

At his heart, God is a master storyteller. In the case of Hosea, God tells Hosea to live out a story for the people to see. This is, of course, a precursor to Jesus, who will not simply live the story, but who will be the story itself. The thing to remember about Hosea is that he was commanded to treat these people as any Jewish father or husband would be. Naming his daughter “unloved,” or his son “not my people,” would not simply have been sad for the child, but sad for him. He was still commanded to love them and think of them as his people. One should not read these names as predictions of treatment for the children. On the contrary, God wanted them names that so he could demonstrate his own ability to defy convention. The likelihood is that Hosea, then, loved his daughter quite amply and his thought about giving his son a strong legacy all the time. This juxtaposition for the love of Hosea to his children, but their perceived identity in naming would be quite a point of irony for the watching world. If Hosea was successful in demonstrating God’s love, despite the implications of their names, it might say something extremely significant about God.

Published by Josh McGary

MY NAME IS JOSH MCGARY. First, I am a Pastor of a small church in Portland, Oregon named Aletheia Bible Fellowship. We call it ABF. I have been a pastor there for the better part of 20 years. I am very eclectic. What I love, I love loudly and immersively. I have notable collections of toys, funko pops, and vinyl. I also infamously love pop culture, comic books, technology, the arts, psychology and philosophy. https://sleek.bio/joshmcgary

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