Vs. 1, “Do not rejoice, O Israel, with exultation like the nations! For you have played the harlot, forsaking your God. You have loved harlots’ earnings on every threshing floor.” Question: What is going on here? It was harvest time and Israel was rejoicing because the harvest was plentiful. Sadly, they followed the nations around them and gave thanks to the fertility God’s for their good fortunes. And to make matters worse, they were throwing parties that involved immorality of all kinds. Success is not always a measure of God’s favor on us and this is where Israel (Ephraim) had gone wrong. Their hearts had turned and forgotten about God. We see the broken heart of God in the last section of our chapter (vs. 10-17).
Regarding application…The Bigger Picture. Vs. 17, “My God will cast them away Because they have not listened to Him; And they will be wanderers among the nations.” It’s never easy to see the others being disciplined. If we only look at this chapter, it would be quite depressing. But, remember brothers & sisters…that we have the whole context of the Bible both Old and New Testaments. We know that God would restore those who were cast out through Jesus. When Jesus traveled through Samaria and ran into the woman at the well (John 4), she likely was a descendant of these people we just read about in Hosea. God’s love has always been extended to His creation. It’s just that not everyone turns to Him. Question: Will you turn to Him? Examine your heart as you think about the scripture in today’s reading. And remember the bigger picture!