Vs. 4, “I led them with cords of human kindness, with ties of love; I lifted the yoke from their neck and bent down to feed them.” Our Father in Heaven is teaching us how He created us to be relational. Hosea gives us a picture of the Father’s love for His child (vs. 1-4). But, like a rebellious teenager, Israel shuns the Father’s love (vs. 5-7). God had given his children every opportunity to turn back to Him, but He will not force a relationship on those who do not want it. Yet, despite this decline of love toward the Father, we are given some insight into the heart of God (vs. 8-9). And lastly, we see God will come like a roaring lion calling His people back to Him (vs. 10-11).
Regarding application…God’s Compassion. Vs. 8, “How can I give you up, Ephraim? How can I hand you over, Israel? How can I treat you like Admah? How can I make you like Zeboiim? My heart is changed within me; all my compassion is aroused.” Question: Do you see it? The love and compassion of God is amazing! We see the covenant (promise) that God follows through and remains true and faithful despite our own weaknesses. The Father in Heaven does not give up on His children. It doesn’t make sense to our limited human minds why God would be so compassionate to a people who did not deserve it. But, while it may not make logical sense, I think deep down inside we have realized this in our own lives. So often we turn away from God, but He is so faithful despite what we do. Knowing of this type of love should compel us to share it to the world that is dying in sin and loss of hope. God’s love is not earned on merit, but by grace (undeserved acceptance and love). Don’t let this truth be contained in your own heart, but shout it out to the world!