Vs. 1, “whenever I would heal Israel, the sins of Ephraim are exposed and the crimes of Samaria revealed. They practice deceit, thieves break into houses, bandits rob in the streets.” Question: What is the problem? The sins of Israel’s leaders have brought sorrow upon the whole nation. The whole political and religious system was corrupt and Israel’s priests were even involved in murder (Hosea 6:9). Sadly, the Northern Kingdom did not have one good King. And to make matters worse, they were making alliances with pagan nations (vs. 11). This is a sad chapter because we see the sadness of what sin can do to a people who do not desire to turn to God (vs. 13-16).
Regarding application…Reality of Sin. Vs. 2, “but they do not realize that I remember all their evil deeds. Their sins engulf them; they are always before me.” Part of the problem we have here is that people don’t want to be reminded and told they are sinners. Seriously…who wants to be accused and called a sinner. This is the sad reality of it all is that so many rebel from the truth (John 14:6). Salvation cannot come to anyone unless they admit they are a sinner. Dearest brothers and sisters in Christ, oh how I wish we were now in Heaven. How I wish this journey of life never had a river to cross, an obstacle to hurdle, and that is prowling like a lion. I’m reminded of the scene from Lord of the Rings when Frodo helplessly states, “I wish the ring had never come to me.” Question: Isn’t that so true with our own lives? How we wish tough times and sin never had it’s affect upon us. Gandalf replies, “So do all who to live see such times, but that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us.” Our life is a vapor in the wind, here today and gone tomorrow. Brothers and sisters…don’t give up. Don’t let sin entangle and seep out the hope that we have. Remember the bigger picture of life and that is to be a light to this world. We are called to remain steadfast in our faith and share Christ wherever He sends us. Let that be your reminder and encouragement. The Lord Jesus loves you more than you can imagine, so let your heart rest in Him.