Living With Means Living Without

30. October 2006 Hosea 0

Text: Hosea 3:1-5 Theme: Living with God means living without our pet sins Key verses: “Love her as the Lord loves the Israelites, though they turn to other gods…” (v 1) “So I bought her for 15 shekels…Then I told her, ‘You are to live with me many days; you must not be a prostitute or be intimate with any man, and I will live with you.’ For the Israelites will live many days without king or prince…or idol. Afterward…They will come trembling to the Lord and to his blessings in the last days.” What God said to me: Dwayne, I have loved Israel with an everlasting love. Time and time again I have gone into the back alleys and dark corners to find them in their rebellion and bring them out to my protection and care. Hosea demonstrated my love through his actions for his wayward, adulterous wife. However, Hosea’s love was not without expectations. And neither is mine. True love doesn’t overlook and ignore sin. Furthermore, my holiness cannot allow unholiness to dwell in my presence. Who will ascend unto the hill of the Lord? He who has clean hands and a pure heart. I stripped Israel of their securities in kings and idols. I took away their carnal pleasures. Only then was the evil smoke cleared enough for them to see where real pleasure, real hope and real security abides – in my presence forever. What I said to God: Thank you, precious Lord, for reminding me today of your everlasting love. You reached down into the garbage dump and pulled me out many years ago. Nearly 2000 years earlier you died proving your love and determination to bring us all back to you. Forgive me when I want to “have my cake and eat it too.” Forgive my wayward thoughts, my rebellious ways. I have played the harlot more than once as I chased after other much smaller gods. Thank you for never giving up on me. Like Hosea, you brought me back, and you expect me to live only for you. I surrender to your holy house rules!