Scandalous Love: The Tough Kind of Love

This is our second message in the book of Hosea, a story of sacrificial love, devotion, and commitment mixed with scandal, unfaithfulness, and disgrace. The purpose of this sermon series is simple.  Most people have no inkling of what the Bible really means when it says, “God loves you.”  Have you thought about that?  What does “God loves you” mean?  Does he have warm feelings for you?  Is his love romantic or brotherly?  The book of Hosea will open our eyes to the magnitude and depth of God’s love.

Studying the book of Hosea comes with a warning: Hosea will not make any sense to a person with a casual, modern view of love.  Any love that comes and goes based on feelings or emotions is casual love and is not the kind of love God has for us.  His love is deeply rooted in truth and self-sacrifice.  Last week, if we saw anything, we saw that God is not a casual lover.  God’s love does not come and go.  He is not indifferent, unconcerned, or aloof about those he loves.  God’s love and commitment to his people are genuine, intense, determined, powerful, and deeply rooted in covenant. 

In his first encounter with God, Hosea, a 20-year-old prophet, is told to marry a promiscuous woman named Gomer.  He obeys and watches as his life becomes a metaphor for God’s relationship with his people.  Three children are born, only one is Hosea’s and the others are children of his wife’s prostitution.  Gomer’s unfaithfulness is a picture of the Israelites' unfaithfulness to their God. As Gomer sells herself to other men, the people sell themselves to Baal, a greedy pagan god worshipped by those around them.  Last week we walked through just the facts.  This morning we are in Hosea chapter 2.  This is where it gets interesting because we move from facts to reaction.  Hosea and God will respond as one to the betrayal of their covenants.

Caveat: We must remember that this passage is always explaining two relationships: God with his people and Hosea with his wife.  Hosea is always a picture of God and Gomer is always a picture of Israel.

You can view the video that is referenced here.

Scandalous Love: The Tough Kind of Love