The Rev. Steven Theiss, pastor of Immanuel Lutheran Church in New Wells, MO, joins the Rev. Dr. Phil Booe to study Hosea 14.
Now comes a final plea from God to the wayward nation of Israel, urging them to turn back to Him and receive His forgiveness and healing. God promises to restore the relationship between Himself and His people, declaring that He will “love them freely” and heal their “backsliding”. The chapter culminates with a powerful reminder to trust in God alone and abandon the worship of false idols. It’s a stirring conclusion to the book of Hosea, filled with passion, tenderness, and a deep desire for reconciliation.
The book of Hosea is a love story with a twist. It tells how God commanded Hosea, a prophet, to marry Gomer, a wife who would be unfaithful to him. God wanted Hosea to feel firsthand the pain of betrayal as he sent him out to prophesy to the people of Israel how they had been unfaithful to God. Hosea still loved Gomer and pursued her and restored her as his wife. This was a picture of how God pursued Israel despite their sin and rebellion and offered them grace and mercy if they would return to Him.
Thy Strong Word, hosted by Rev. Dr. Phil Booe, pastor of St. John Lutheran Church of Luverne, MN, reveals the light of our salvation in Christ through study of God’s Word, breaking our darkness with His redeeming light. Each weekday, two pastors fix our eyes on Jesus by considering Holy Scripture, verse by verse, in order to be strengthened in the Word and be equipped to faithfully serve in our daily vocations.
Thy Strong Word is graciously underwritten by the Lutheran Heritage Foundation. Through the mission gifts of people like you, LHF translates, publishes, distributes and introduces books that are Bible-based, Christ-centered and Reformation-driven. Learn more at lhfmissions.org.
A Plea to Return to the Lord
14 Return, O Israel, to the Lord your God,
for you have stumbled because of your iniquity.
2 Take with you words
and return to the Lord;
say to him,
“Take away all iniquity;
accept what is good,
and we will pay with bulls
the vows[a] of our lips.
3 Assyria shall not save us;
we will not ride on horses;
and we will say no more, ‘Our God,’
to the work of our hands.
In you the orphan finds mercy.”
4 I will heal their apostasy;
I will love them freely,
for my anger has turned from them.
5 I will be like the dew to Israel;
he shall blossom like the lily;
he shall take root like the trees of Lebanon;
6 his shoots shall spread out;
his beauty shall be like the olive,
and his fragrance like Lebanon.
7 They shall return and dwell beneath my[b] shadow;
they shall flourish like the grain;
they shall blossom like the vine;
their fame shall be like the wine of Lebanon.
8 O Ephraim, what have I to do with idols?
It is I who answer and look after you.[c]
I am like an evergreen cypress;
from me comes your fruit.
9 Whoever is wise, let him understand these things;
whoever is discerning, let him know them;
for the ways of the Lord are right,
and the upright walk in them,
but transgressors stumble in them.
- Hosea 14:2 Septuagint, Syriac pay the fruit
- Hosea 14:7 Hebrew his
- Hosea 14:8 Hebrew him
English Standard Version (ESV) The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. ESV® Text Edition: 2016. Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. esv.org