The Prophet Hosea

"Straight are the paths of the Lord,
in them the just walk,
but sinners stumble in them."

-Hosea 14:10

The prophet of divine love, a prophet willing to suffer to regain the love of a beloved one, is the prophet Hosea. The prophet Hosea, often seen as a minor prophet, is found after the book of Daniel in the bible. Hosea was a prophet during the reign of Jeroboam II(786-746 B.C.) to the reign of Hezekiah (715-687 B.C.). During the time of Hosea,some people believed Hosea was a priest or as a cult prophet. Hosea was known to have a perceptive mind and a refined sensitivity. Hosea was also believed to be an Ephraimite. But truly, Hosea was a prophet or a messenger chosen by God. With the book of Hosea, a tradition starts and many ideas and truths are revealed.

The Book of Hosea is divided
into two parts:
Book of Hosea
The Prophet's Marriage and Its Lesson
Israel's Guilt and Punishment

The Prophet's Marriage

"The Prophet Hosea and his wife Gomer"

Hosea's marriage to Gomer is the platform or base on which Hosea's prophecy stands. Often, this marriage is seen as an unfortunate marriage and a tragedy. The marriage of Hosea and Gomer is seen as an unfortunate marriage since Gomer was known to be an adulteress and a harlot. Through his marriage with Gomer, Hosea has three children named Jezreel, Lo-Ruhamah, and Lo-Ammi. After bearing Hosea children, Gomer leaves Hosea and continues her life as a harlot. Gomer's leaving angers Hosea in the same way God is angered by Israel's unfaithfulness. If Gomer was to repent, Hosea was more than willing to forgive her. In the same way God has an everlasting mercy and love for us. Many people may wonder why a prophet would marry such a sinful person. The answer to this unfortunate marriage is revealed during the time of Hosea. While Hosea was alive, Israel had become a faithless nation. Israel became a nation of idolatry, oppression of the poor, and many other sins. Since Gomer was an unfaithful person, she is used to symbolize the faithless Israel that exsisted during the time of Hosea. For this reason, God uses Hosea to disturb the faithless Israel and to make the people of Israel aware of their wrongs and shortcomings in being faithful to God. With this as a platform, Hosea is a prophet to the people of Israel.

The Book of Hosea marks the start of a tradition in the bible. This tradition connects to the marriage of Hosea and Gomer. With this marriage, the relationship of Yahweh and Israel is described in terms of a marriage. This is the tradition that begins with the Book of Hosea and is used in the writings of Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, and St. Paul.

The Message of the Prophet

The main message of Hosea was for Israel to change their ways. In the book of Hosea the crimes of Israel are revealed. These crimes include guilt of the priests and leaders along with many other terrible actions and practices. The one crime that Hosea stresses a lot is the worship of other gods or idolatry. Hosea works to bring Israel back to the practice of monotheism, or belief in one God. This is the one characteristic that gives Israel the quality of being unfaithful.

Questions and Answers

    Aside from a prophet, who was Hosea?
    Why did God need to send Israel a prophet?
    How was Hosea's marriage to Gomer used in God's message?
    In the book of Hosea, what tradition was started that involved marriage?


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