Today, I am reading and commenting on Hosea 8-14.
I am struggling to write this blog entry today, not because there is not a message which speaks to me in this passage, but because there are many. Hosea condemned the people of Israel for claiming to worship God and calling out to Him for rescue while worshiping an idol as God (the golden calves which Jeroboam built). They created sites for worshiping God and covering their sins, but they used them to follow practices which God had forbidden. The people loved to follow the practices which made them appear righteous, but ignored the laws which actually affected the way they lived their day to day lives. Those who speak God’s word or seek to follow His commands are called crazy or fools. Sound familiar?
There is a line further on in the passage which has the people saying “We have no king because we did not fear the Lord. But even if we had a king, what could he do for us anyway?” When I first read that it seemed like an acknowledgement of their sin and that their problems resulted from their sin. However, as I read it again in the context it seems more of a rejection of God and goodness. In context with the rest of this passage that reads to me more as “Sure, our failure to fear God means the government is dysfunctional, but what’s in it for me if the government functions well?” God was calling the people of Israel to plow up the hard ground of their hearts and plant righteousness. He is calling on us to do the same today. But instead of doing as God asked the people of Israel cultivated wickedness, as do so many people today. If we sow the wind, we will harvest the whirlwind. When we sow wickedness we will harvest destruction.