Professor Chris Newcomb
REL 124: Introduction to the Old Testament
April 27, 2011
Hosea was the son of Beeri. His name means “salvation is the Lord.” This name comes from the Hebrew language. Most historians believe that he was from Samaria. The actual occupation of Hosea was not known. “It seems to be clear that he occupied some position or place of distinction.” It has also been thought that he may have been a priest at some time in his life. The date of his prophetic ministry is from 753-715 BC which is around the 8th century. The prophet Hosea’s ministry occurred during the time of the last two kings of Israel but before the Assyrians had conquered and destroyed the land. Hosea was a modern-day version of previous prophets named Isaiah and Amos. The book of Hosea includes many of his sermons and things that he has done throughout the many years of his ministry.
Hosea was a true prophet. Some called the prophet Hosea one of the tenderest prophets. He was also known as a prophet of grace and reminded many of Saint John from the New Testament. Some people called Hosea the “prophet of doom” because he gave messages about destruction and punishment. He was disgraced by Israel’s actions toward their God. He called what they did one simple word “whoredom.” This gives a summary of all the negative actions that have occurred in Israel. The people in Israel didn’t have all of the knowledge needed and were unaware of the Laws of God. They served false or idol gods. The women in Israel were serving as prostitutes. The people of Israel really did not have time for God or the covenant that they had with Him.
The actions of the Israelites were certainly against what God desired. These people literally broke every commandment that God established. They lied, stole, murdered and committed adultery. They were also becoming dishonest in their business dealings. The nation of Israel was in total disarray. Hosea’s main purpose was to turn the people of Israel back to God, but this was a difficult task because the people were too deeply into what they were doing. The Israelites were not even trying to take heed of the warning that Hosea was there to give them. They were just going along without any thought, which was a great big mistake.
God sent the prophet Hosea with a special message. He was to portray to the people of Israel the nature and character of God. He was to explain to them who God really is. He was to make sure that they knew that there was only one true God. One of the most favorable expressions of this prophet is loving kindness. Hosea was also to stress the importance about the covenant that was made between God and Israel. The covenant was important because God has specifically chosen Israel. The relationship between God and Israel was to be seen as a marriage or parent and child. The most important thing about Hosea and the covenant of Israel and God, Hosea stresses the idea that covenant had to do with mutual responsibilities. This means that the Israelites had to do something and in return God will keep His promise. Because of the actions of the people of Israel, Hosea had to prepare them for a punishment that would be theirs. Hosea spoke to the people of Israel about the judgment that they would have to endure. God also sent this prophet to explain to them that God was just a God of love and because He loved them so much he sent Hosea there to warn them. The only way that God seemed to get the people of Israel to listen to them was to make things very hard for them. This way, they would have no other choice but to obey and come back to the God that never stopped loving them.
The thing that is most important about this prophet is that he had a personal life that reflected exactly what God was going through with Israel. Hosea had a wife that was also a prostitute. Just like the people of Israel, Hosea’s wife, Gomer, was in a way, rebelling against Hosea. She was going around sleeping with...
Bibliography: “Amos The Fearless Prophet.” AGS Consulting. 27 Apr 2011. <www.agsconsulting.com/htdbv5/r5805.htm>
Bandstra, Barry L. Reading the Old Testament: Introduction to the Hebrew Bible. Belmont: Wadsworth, 2009.
Gigot, Francis. “Amos.” The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 1. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1907. 27 Apr. 2011 <http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/01435a.htm>
“Hosea: Biblical People.” 27 Apr 2011. <http://www.aboutbibleprophecy.com/p19.htm>
Maxey, Al. “The Minor Prophets: Hosea.” Hosea 27 Apr 2011. <www.zianet.com/maxey/proph2.htm>
Stedman, Ray C. “Hosea: The Prophet and the Prostitute.” 27 Apr 2011. <http://www.pbc.org/files/messages/3107/0228.html>
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