Signpost for Sunday July 31, 2016: Hosea 11:1-11; Psalm 107:1-9,43; Col 3: 1-11; Luke 12:13-21.
Hosea had it rough. Married to a prostitute and all his kids were given the most depressing names on earth by YHWH himself.
On the other hand, the Jews at the beginning the eighth century BCE, probably thought they’d never had it so good. The northern and southern kingdoms were economically wealthier and politically more powerful than they had been since the kingdoms had separated. Both Israel in the north and Judah in the south had beaten the pants off their old enemies, and anyone living in Israel or Judah at the time would have assumed their prosperity and security came because YHWH was pleased with them.
Maybe that’s why they seemed to be behaving like spoilt children as far as YHWH is concerned in verses 1-4. Then, YHWH seems to lose patience with his children so he sends them off to Egypt.
And the Jewish people would have been brought to their senses because they believed their relationship with God was essentially a contract. After all, Deuteronomy told them quite clearly that if God’s people obey God’s laws, all would go well with them. And if they disobey God’s laws, they would wish that they hadn’t.
But YHWH’s view of the relationship seems to be much more like the way people often feel about each other in a family, where relationships survive despite the fact that things go wrong and people fall out. I think Exodus 4:22-23 is the first time that YHWH speaks of Israel as God’s child, but here are some of the first signs that YHWH is the Abba Jesus reveals to us.
If like me you never noticed it before, there it is in black and white (verse 8), God won’t give up on you.