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Communion Meditations (2020)

 

Hosea

Originally scheduled for April 12

The book of Hosea in the Old Testament is largely one of God prophesying his punishment for Israel and Judah for their idolatrous behavior. But squeezed within the pages is one of the more prominent allegories of the Old Testament. God commanded Hosea to marry a prostitute.

This comes a somewhat of a surprise to the average Christian. It carries with it some lessons:

·         Not everything God puts on your to do list is pleasant. As a matter fact God sometimes needs someone to do the dirty work, and you just might be someone.

·         Your pain-and-suffering might just be there for God’s purposes, not as a punishment to you or somebody else. You will remember the man born blind in John chapter 9? The disciples asked Christ, “who sinned”, to cause this man to be born blind. His answer was, “the glory of God.” He was blind so that your eyes might be opened.

·         In this instance God uses Hosea and his wife, Gomer, as a living illustration of his love for the nation of Israel and his hatred of its idolatry.

In the third chapter of Hosea we find out that Hosea is ordered to go and get his wife back. To do this, he has to purchase her out of slavery. The common opinion today is that Gomer had lived a wonderful life — all those men, all that money. Modern feminism considers this wonderful; evidently it didn’t work out too well for Gomer. She started out as a slave to sin and wound up being just a slave.[1] And not just any ordinary slave either; she was considered damaged goods and was sold for about half the price of an ordinary female slave. Yet her husband bought her back.

God purchased us much the same way. We see in the Scripture that God told Hosea to buy her back as an illustration of his love for Israel and by implication his love for us. But please consider at what price: Hosea purchased her as damaged goods for half the going rate. You and I were purchased at the price of God’s own son, hanging on a cross, dying for our sins.

So as you partake this morning, remember that the bread represents his body broken for you. Remember that the cup represents his blood, shed for you. And not just for you and me, but the sacrifice was made for “whosoever will.” Christ made the ultimate sacrifice so that everyone who wants to can be saved. Rejoice in your salvation; be grateful for your redemption and remember who did this for you.


[1] You think this doesn't happen today? Hundreds of thousands of children are sold into sexual slavery every year. If you'd like to learn more, I suggest a trip to recoveryofchildren.org.

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