“Yet the Israelites will be like the sand on the seashore, which cannot be measured or counted. In the place where it was said to them, ‘You are not my people,’ they will be called ‘sons of the living God.'” (Hosea 1:10)
As much as we may cling to another person’s promises, unfortunately people often make promises they don’t keep. Many of our promises end up being conditional, and we only fulfill them when we’re in the same season of making that promise, or when the circumstances favor us keeping them.
I don’t think we intentionally subscribe to the saying that “promises are made to be broken,” but it’s more of a result of being flawed and human. Thankfully God always keeps His promises, no matter what the season or circumstance!
The book of Hosea is a reflection of God’s faithfulness, mercy, and forgiveness to the people of Israel, despite their sinfulness and idolatry. This is seen through Hosea’s relationship with his unfaithful wife Gomer, as he continued to sacrificially love her while she ran towards other men. His commitment to her through long-suffering parallels God’s commitment to Israel, even as they continually ran to false gods.
As you read through the prophet’s account of the relationship between Israel and the Lord, we see that their sin begot judgment, judgment begot repentance, repentance begot forgiveness, and forgiveness begot restoration.
Israel’s disobedience showed that they “were not his people”, but because of His relentless love and their repentant hearts, God carried out His promise that ultimately they would be united under Christ as “sons of the living God.” Hosea 1:10 is the promise the Lord made to Abraham in Genesis 22 and the covenant made to Moses in Deuteronomy 30, among many others!
Like Israel and like Gomer, we have surely been unfaithful to the Lord in our lifetimes, chasing modern day idols of fame, fortune, comfort, security, and relationships, all above our relationship with Him.
But also like Israel and Gomer, we can take heart, because God offers us the promise of salvation and eternal restoration, when we accept the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross and turn from our sins. He is the ultimate promise keeper!
“For no matter how many promises God has made, they are ‘Yes’ in Christ. And so through him the “Amen” is spoken by us to the glory of God.” (2 Cor. 1:20)
[From January 22, 2019]