The Meaning of Hosea Chapter One and Two, Part 1 of 2

hosea

When the Lord promised to send His final messenger to our church, one of the greatest things we find is the understanding of long-held mysteries of the Bible. One of those mysteries we now understand is the often confusing story of Hosea. All too often the people are told that Hosea chapter one and two is a “real” story. That Hosea really did go out and marry a whore. This idea stems mostly from our protestant friends, those who also tell us the Sabbath has been done away with. However we as SDA have some private ideas on this story from our leaders as seen here –https://www.adventistbiblicalresearch.org/materials/bible-ot-texts/hosea-12

But let us  look at the story and find out the real spiritual meaning as brought to us by the final prophet, Victor T. Houteff. We shall see a pleading story from God to us His remnant church, a story that shows the depth of His love for us and the desperation that exists in bringing her back to Him.

 

 

Let us now break this story down and study it from our prophet’s interpretation.

Hos. 1:2 — “The beginning of the word of the Lord by Hosea. And the Lord said to Hosea, Go, take unto thee a wife of whoredoms and children of whoredoms: for the land hath committed great whoredom, departing from the Lord.”

   We immediately see that this wife and these children symbolize God’s people departing from Him, and that such a wicked act, He calls whoredom.

Hos. 1:3, 4 — “So he went and took Gomer the daughter of Diblaim; which conceived, and bare him a son.  and the Lord said unto him, Call his name Jezreel; for yet a little while, and I will avenge the blood of Jezreel upon the house of Jehu, and will cause to cease the kingdom of the house of Israel.”

   God’s reason for thus naming Hosea’s first visionary son, was to signify that in a little while He was to avenge the blood of Jezreel upon the house of Jehu, who was then the king of Israel.  Then declared the Lord:

Hos. 1:5 — “And it shall come to pass at that day, that I will break the bow of Israel, in the valley of Jezreel.”

   To break the bow would mean to break the nation’s military strength.  The history of this is recorded in 2 Kings 10, 11.

Hos. 1:6 — “And she conceived again, and bare a daughter.  And God said unto him, Call her name Lo-ruhamah: for I will no more have mercy upon the house of Israel; but I will utterly take them away.”

   This child’s name was to denote the complete destruction of the house of Israel, the ten-tribe kingdom.  This destruction, we know, was accomplished by the king of Assyria, who scattered the people throughout the cities of the Medes.  The history of this is found in 2 Kings 18:11 — “And the king of Assyria did carry away Israel unto Assyria, and put them in Halah and in Habor by the river of Gozan, and in the cities of the Medes.”

Hos. 1:7 — “But I will have mercy upon the house of Judah, and will save them by the Lord their God, and will not save them by bow, nor by sword, nor by battle, by horses, nor by horsemen.”

   The Lord promised to spare the house of Judah from the invasion of the king of Assyria.  The history of this incident is recorded in 2 Kings 19:35 — “And it came to pass that night, that the angel of the Lord went out, and smote in the camp of the Assyrians an hundred fourscore and five thousand: and when they arose early in the morning, behold, they were all dead corpses.”

Hos. 1:8, 9 — “Now when she had weaned Lo-ruhamah, she conceived, and bare a son.  Then said God, Call his name Lo-Ammi: for ye are not My people, and I will not be your God.”

   The name of the third child was to signify that though Israel and Judah were God’s chosen people, the day was fast approaching in which they would no longer be called His people.  The fulfillment of this phase of the prophecy brings us to the Christian era.

Hos. 1:10 — “Yet the number of the children of Israel shall be as the sand of the sea, which cannot be measured nor numbered; and it shall come to pass, that in the place where it was said unto them, Ye are not My people, there it shall be said unto them, Ye are the sons of the living God.”

   In spite of the calamities that were to overtake the children of Israel, they were to become very numerous.  And when they are thus greatly multiplied, they are again to be called the sons of God.  And so here we see a prophecy of the rebellion of God’s people and God’s rejection of them, as well as their repentance and re-acceptance by Him. (Timely Greetings, vol. 2, no.6, p.13-17)

Let us here for a moment discuss the titles “Judah” and “Israel.”  When superficially read these titles are as a rule misconstrued and made to mean the identified Jews.  But we must not be superficial readers and thinkers.  Let us be deep Bible students.  Now, everyone knows that the identified Jews of today are but a handful — certainly not as the sands of the sea.  The innumerable children of Israel, therefore, cannot be the unbelieving Jews of today.  Besides, theidentified Jews of today are not the descendants of the ten-tribe kingdom, but of the two-tribe kingdom.  Who, then, is this multitude of people referred to in Hosea’s prophecy?

 

   We must not overlook the fact that the Gospel of Christ divided the house of Judah into two sects — Jewish and Christian, that the Christian church for about four years after the resurrection of Christ consisted practically only of Jews.  Plainly, then, the original Christians were full-blooded Jews, — the Christian church is only a branch of the Jewish church, but they and their descendants have, through the years, lost their racial identity. 

Then, too, the descendants of both Israel and Judah who through the years of captivity lost their identity as did the Jews who embraced Christianity, according to prophecy must also have greatly multiplied.  Plainly, then, many who are taken as Gentiles, are but unidentified descendants of ancient Judah, Israel, and the Jewish Christians.  The Christian church herself is, as we have seen, a Jewish-Christian church.

   These descendants of Jacob, who were assimilated by the Gentile nations, therefore, were to multiply as the sand of the sea.  They are the ones who, after becoming Christians, are again called the sons of the living God.

   Of those who first embraced the Christian faith, the Apostle Peter speaks thus: “Which in time past were not a people, but are now the people of God: which had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy.” 1 Pet. 2:10.

   And the Apostle John says: “But as many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name.” John 1:12.

 

   Now we see that the prophecy of Hosea 1 begins with the house of Israel and Judah, and brings us down through the stream of time to the Christian era.  For light on the church in the Christian period, we turn to–

Hos. 1:11 — “Then shall the children of Judah and the children of Israel be gathered together, and appoint themselves one head, and they shall come up out of the land: for great shall be the day of Jezreel.”

   The Word of God, therefore, definitely declares that the subjects of the torn-down kingdoms — Judah and Israel — as Christians, along with the Gentiles that have joined them, will gather together and appoint themselves a king.

   In a similar symbolism, the prophet was told that after many days of obscurity and wandering, “shall the children of Israel return, and seek the Lord their God, and David their king [evidently David is the “one head” whom they appoint], and shall fear the Lord and His goodness in the latter days.” Hos. 3:5. (Timely Greetings, vol. 2, no.6, p.13-17)

 

(Next week we’ll finish the Hosea prophecy with chapter two and a summary about it’s lesson for us today)

Color code– Scripture  and  Victor Houteff

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