HOSEA‬ ‭11:1-11‬‬‬

““When Israel was a child, I loved him, and I called my son out of Egypt. But the more I called to him, the farther he moved from me, offering sacrifices to the images of Baal and burning incense to idols. I myself taught Israel how to walk, leading him along by the hand. But he doesn’t know or even care that it was I who took care of him. I led Israel along with my ropes of kindness and love. I lifted the yoke from his neck, and I myself stooped to feed him. “But since my people refuse to return to me, they will return to Egypt and will be forced to serve Assyria. War will swirl through their cities; their enemies will crash through their gates. They will destroy them, trapping them in their own evil plans. For my people are determined to desert me. They call me the Most High, but they don’t truly honor me. “Oh, how can I give you up, Israel? How can I let you go? How can I destroy you like Admah or demolish you like Zeboiim? My heart is torn within me, and my compassion overflows. No, I will not unleash my fierce anger. I will not completely destroy Israel, for I am God and not a mere mortal. I am the Holy One living among you, and I will not come to destroy. For someday the people will follow me. I, the Lord, will roar like a lion. And when I roar, my people will return trembling from the west. Like a flock of birds, they will come from Egypt. Trembling like doves, they will return from Assyria. And I will bring them home again,” says the Lord.”

Hosea‬ ‭11:1-11‬ ‭NLT‬‬

The requirements of love are not mercy alone. It also requires a tender heart and in the same breadth an accurate discernment. Judgement is born from these in a love that is selfless. In the same vein that man is not immune from the justice of God in his love. God is not immune from his own sense of mercy in his love either. It is a complex quandary that any person in a committed relationship of any length should realize. Whether with children or spouses, it might be right to be angry but it is not right to lose a tenderheart. Only God can solve something so dynamic. The solution is loss of one’s self through propitiatory sacrifice. Only a god could make such a choice and come back from it. Only a god would be willing. Only those who follow in his image choose to emulate it. We should be ever grateful that God, not only shows us the way back to right relationships, but takes the first steps for us and gives us a guide in the process. We must never forget how traumatic this was for him.

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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