Hosea Reveals the Bride of Christ
What lengths our God goes to to bring us to Himself. Through the story of Hosea, He reveals the deep truths about His own choice and His bridal love for us.
John, I was thinking today I’d just like to reach out to our friends near and far about our writing. How do you feel about that?
Well, yeah, it, it’s, we’ve got so much just sitting there ready to go and I would love to talk about it. I mean we’ve got…We even had somebody this week give me an idea for something and I’m like going, “Oh, yeah, that, that really works.” She wrote an email and basically said that she had just listened to the Power of Prayer CD series. And I said, “Wow” You know something…She said, “Please make that into a book.” I said, “It would be perfectly paired with the Experiencing the Depths of The Lord’s Prayer.” Isn’t that what it’s called? And, and I was thinking both of those. Yeah, you did both of those at DUMC and, and I, I, you know…They, they really kind of tagged teamed.
You’ve got all the kingdom messages. You’ve got…You have the one that you and I are going to do together-Overcoming Anxiety.
And you haven’t mentioned Sovereign Touch.
Yeah, I’ve got Sovereign Touch I’m working on and I’ve got The Great Exchange. I mean essentially those are completely written. It’s literally just doing the final editing and then I have to figure out how I’m going to get them into the print in Kindle format. Sovereign Touch is currently at Kindle but the…We want to put that one in print first and I’ve got to figure out how to get that done. We’ve been looking for some help. Covid has been a kind of a horrible situation for us.
I’m thinking back on our commission. We have a commission very clear and it’s a wonderful trust and…But living out, there’s so many things that have been going on and we’ve been living out our message. And that’s the only way that what we write will have power.
This is our statement from 2009. Psalm 79:13 in the Amplified. Then we Your people, the sheep of Your pasture, will give You thanks forever; we will show forth (live) and publish Your praise from generation to generation.
That’s our mandate is to publish from generation to generation. So it’s real exciting and we’ve…You, you friends of ours are so encouraging and supportive. And it just, it just takes so, a lot of encouragement to keep going on this doesn’t it, John? There’s a lot of warfare. And there’s a lot of bumps in the road.
And sheer work!
And sheer…The real deal is sheer work. It’s incredibly hard to concentrate to the degree that writing requires.
Yea, it is.
I didn’t, I didn’t know that. It’s hard work. It’s exhausting and wonderful. There’s nothing more exciting than to have the Lord express Himself and let you in on it. So…
And I just wanted…I have a dear friend who’s called to the Bride also. And I wanted to give her one of the chapters, which I don’t do a whole lot while I’m writing it. But when I started researching through the scriptures about the Bride…In Revelation it says, “The Bride has made herself ready.” And it means that she had a work to do.
She didn’t just fall off the wagon into the bridal gown.
(John Laughs) Yeah, that’s the truth.
And so when I began to look at the Bible through the eyes, through the view of the Bride, I saw the whole Bible is really about the Bride because the culmination of humanity and the Bible is going to be the marriage of the Lamb. And from that point it will be the reigning of the Son of God on earth.
So it’s incredibly rich, incredibly fascinating. And then I’m like a miner for gold because I’m going, looking at every story of the Bible to see something about the Bride. And so I’m going to read to you one that I have cried over in really how gracious God is and then I’ve laughed about it because it’s… God is very strange. And this one is strange.
He takes this man who’s a follow of His and He says, “Go marry a woman who’s a harlot and have children.” So God used Gomer to picture the infidelity of Israel and to prove His extravagant power of redemption. Gomer, the harlot, the pure bride! Impossible! God always considered Israel His chosen wife.
So I’m going to finish this and will read to you one writing of John’s that wept over.
This writing goes on…
Gomer, adulterous wife! Hosea 1:2 says, “Go, take to yourself a wife of harlotry and have children of harlotry; for the land commits flagrant harlotry, forsaking the Lord.
(Laughing) Gosh, that is so encouraging…
But see the Lord wasn’t even addressing human immorality.
It wasn’t what He’s talking about at all.
The essence of sin we seldom see. The core of sin we have no idea. Sin to us is acts, actions, deeds, and wrongs. We can list them. We know what sin is. Sin is merely wrong window views of the heart. We know what sin is we think. But sin must be defined by God. Not by what sin does to us and to each other but by what sin does to Him. We scare consider God’s heart when we reject Him for worthless lovers. The Hosea story tells God’s view. The lowest sin, the most vile evil, the essential nature of sin is adultery against God. So that Israel could understand God defined the root and basis of sin as spiritual adultery against Him. I thought what a blow to the rigid moralist. What a shock to the blatant criminal. The core of sin is against God. Not moral adultery. Not human betrayal. Not sins against humanity. The heart of sin is this: disloyalty to God by adultery against His covenant marriage to us.
For a spirit of harlotry has led them astray and they have played the harlot departing from their God. Hosea 4:12
And God called Hosea to live out and demonstrate his own anguish as a husband betrayed. Hosea anguished in the human condition of it…
…and it represented what God anguishes.
So Israel chased foods and peoples and idols, things they wanted more than God, seeking lovers better than God. Sin is not just the breaking of a law. Not the failure to keep it. Sin the abandonment of God the Husband…
Golly, that’s awesome.
…preferring many filthy lovers rather than the perfect One. Israel could not see the real sin, the breaking of God’s husband heart. Only in the context of harlotry, the shamelessness of many lovers could Israel glimpse the hideousness of their idolatrous sin from God’s painful estimate. Through Hosea God put their faithlessness in a context they could understand; their human marriages, their human drama, their human betrayal and the great pain of that.
James the brother of Jesus knew this analogy for New Testament Believers and this, this is…I don’t think we understand this scripture yet.
You adulteresses, do you not know that friendship with the world is hostility toward God? Therefore, whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God. James 4:4
See how strong that issue is? That it’s not just being in love with people at all. It’s betrayal of God, it’s rejection of Him as Husband and Beloved.
It is adultery with the world and it’s god to believe that you sustenance, your needs are met from your human loves. We are entertained by the world. We are fed by the world. We are…And that…When we are that connected to the world, it becomes our beloved idol. And Hosea had to learn this and so did Gomer. There’s nothing in life that feeds and keeps us but that it is actually from God. The story says that Gomer the wife, the harlot wife, believed her wine and bread came from her lovers. Because her needs were met that where she put her love. But to leave God is to lose yourself and your way. Such is the undaunted heart of the lover God that He will make your rebellious road both painful and dark just to bring you back to Himself.
Verse 6 of 4. (Hosea 2:6) I will hedge up her way with thorns…
And I, I’ve had a few of those thorns. I have these scars of thorns.
…and I will build a wall against her so she cannot find her paths.
God is a jealous Husband, ferocious and powerful enough to drive away His rivals.
This is back to the scripture: She will pursue her lovers but she will not overtake them and she will seek them but will not find them. Then she will say, “I will go back to my first husband for it is better for me than now.”
See, we’re looking for a God who is practical and present, a hero who has the power to keep and serve, solve, carry, guard, and love us. Israel had such a God fully available, amazingly perfect in miraculous ability. Israel had the perfect husband-God.
Gomer, she does not know that it was I who gave her the grain, the new wine and the oil and lavished on her silver and gold, which they used for Baal.
So the most treacherous adultery is to use God’s generosity for the worship of His enemy. And the sins of self-worship are a hell of delusion. To feel full when you’re dead in emptiness that is a godless hell. And our God is too good to let us easily marry our own flesh. We prostitutes must be named. We idolatries must be exposed not for condemnation but for humiliation and redemption.
Since all things are His gifts, the Lord rules Israel’s withdrawal and the collapse of Gomer’s delusion….as pretty brutal.
God is a jealous God.
Throughout the scriptures that’s a very power statement.
He is a consuming fire.
I will take back My grain and My new wine. I will uncover her lewdness. I will also put an end to all her gaiety. I will destroy her vine and figs trees.
So Gomer’s cast alone and hungry so she can recognize the reality of her loss and the horror of her shame. And then this is what God does and He does it with all of us:
Then I will allure her, bring her into the wilderness and speak kindly to her.
What lengths our God goes to to bring us to Himself. And the beautiful result of that barren desert is this:
It will come about in that day declare the Lord that you will call me Ishi, Husband and will no longer call me Baali, master.
The promise to Gomer, Israel, you and me is His own complete restoration of His wife by the conquering love of His unearned favor.
All this is so amazing because He solved the problems of Gomer so that she is fit to be His wife. He takes over and fixes her. He takes care of all her, all her betrayal.
This is what He says. This is the promise and it’s a promise to you and me:
And I will betroth you to Me forever; yes, I will betroth you to Me in righteousness and in justice, in lovingkindness and compassion. I will betroth you to Me in faithfulness that you will know the Lord.
Hosea Reveals the Bride of Christ – Episode #711 – Shulamite Podcast
Martha shares a chapter from her upcoming book on the Bride of Christ. Through an unexpected source the Father reveals the story of Jesus’ beautiful Bride. Through the story of Hosea, the Lord reveals the deep truths about His own choice and bridal love for us.