Prophestic Spotlight From Hosea

by Joseph Hunting

From time to time there are special summit meetings when heads of government seek to apply pressures to bring about a better world order as they see it. Occasionally the leaders of the two mightiest military powers on earth meet to set the course which will determine the balance of power and perhaps the destiny of countless millions.

At a time when these nations were mere pagan tribes a Hebrew prophet named Hosea accurately pinpointed events that came to pass with extraordinary accuracy regarding Israel's future.


The Scriptures portray the God of Israel as a husband to the nation: "For thy Maker is thine husband; the Lord of hosts is his name ..." (Isaiah 54:5); " ... although I was an husband unto them, saith the Lord" (Jeremiah 31:32), and the nation as a wife to Jehovah: "For the Lord hath called thee as a ... wife of youth ... saith thy God" (Isaiah 54:6); "And I will betroth thee unto me for ever; yes, I will betroth thee unto me in righteousness, and in judgment, and in lovingkindness, and in mercies. I will even betroth thee to me in faithfulness: and thou shalt know the Lord" (Hosea 2:19,20).

In order to illustrate Israel's unfaithfulness to God at the time, the Lord commanded Hosea to marry a harlot. Even by today's loose moral standards the marriage was a disaster. His wife, Gomer, deserted him and returned to her former adulterous ways. This was a picture of God's own nation's treatment of Him, their 'husband'.

In a similar situation you and I would cry 'quits'. As for Hosea, he had done what the Lord had required of him. Yet the Lord asked a further step of obedience from the prophet in taking Gomer back! He paid the going price for this discarded piece of humanity, a mere fifteen shekels (a slave could be bought for thirty!)

Hosea's obedience to God set the pattern which God was to follow in restoring the adulterous nation back to himself. But let Hosea himself describe his actions.

"So I bought her to myself for fifteen pieces of silver, and for a homer of barley. And I said unto her, Thou shalt abide for me many days, and thou shalt not play the harlot, and thou shalt not be for another man; so will I also be for thee.

"For the children of Israel shall abide many days without a king, and without a prince, and without a sacrifice, and without an image, and without an ephod and without teraphim: afterward shall the children of Israel return, and seek the Lord their God, and David their king, and shall fear the Lord and his goodness in the latter days" (3:3-5)


This prophecy is all the more remarkable when it is remembered that both Judah and the northern kingdom of Israel had kings on their respective thrones at the time. About 722 B.C. the Assyrians besieged Samaria and finally carried the king and survivors of the northern kingdom to Assyria.

Then in 586 B.C. the armies of Babylon destroyed the Davidic dynasty in Jerusalem. Apart from the Idumean Herods who were appointed by the Romans, Israel has been "without a king and without a prince" for the past 2,500 years.

When the city of Jerusalem and the Temple were rebuilt following the seventy year Babylonian captivity, sacrifices were reintroduced, as was the priestly ministry, requiring the ephod. But it is a fact of history also that Israel abhorred the use of images and teraphim (probably household gods) following the Babylonian captivity.

The next phase of the prophecy came to pass when the Romans destroyed Jerusalem and the Temple in 70 A.D., ending for more than nineteen centuries sacrifices and the use of the ephod.


The events just described are ancient history. But the next phase of Hosea's prophecy has particular relevance for this generation: "AFTERWARD SHALL THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL RETURN ..." The events of World War 1 and World War 2 played vital roles in reshaping the destiny of Israel. On May 14th 1948 the nation was reborn after the most traumatic period in their history. If the lasting legacy of W.W.1 was the Land prepared for the People, then the fiery furnace of W.W.2 prepared the People for the Land and Hosea's prophecy again became history.

But the best is yet to come. They "shall seek the Lord their God and David their king and shall fear the Lord and his goodness in the latter days."

Just as surely as all the past pieces of Hosea's prophecy have come to pass, so will the fullness of Divine blessing rest upon this nation "in the latter days" when they "seek the Lord their God and David their king".