“Return, O Israel, to the Lord your God. Your sins have been your downfall! Take words with you and return to the Lord. Say to him: ‘Forgive all our sins and receive us graciously, that we may offer the fruits of our lips.'” (Hosea 14:1-2)
It still blows my mind that when we sin against the Lord, because of His love, grace, mercy, and compassion, He still offers us forgiveness.
In Hosea 14, we see Hosea’s final call to Israel for repentance. After all the nation had done to turn away from the Lord, their Father in heaven still lovingly called them back.
“I will heal their waywardness and love them freely, for my anger has turned away from them.” (Hosea 14:4)
This is the representation of true love, and why we will always have hope in Jesus. Despite our sin, God loves us. Despite our mistakes, God loves us. Despite the fact that we’ve failed Him over and over, God loves us. He hates the sin, but He loves us. When we acknowledge our sin, repent, and turn to Jesus knowing that we can’t possibly meet God’s standard of righteousness on our own, He is faithful to listen and forgive because He is merciful.
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16)
The gospel is the ultimate definition of sacrificial love, that Christ died for us. If you haven’t already, seek God for the forgiveness of your sins. Repent, and discover the blessings and abundant life that God has for you through Jesus!
The book of Hosea ends with the encouraging reminder that, like Israel, we don’t have to be stuck in our sin, nor perish in our iniquity. He will always offer a way out! God loves you more than you can imagine, and offers His gift of grace to all.
While we can’t save ourselves, in Christ, hope abounds.
[From February 4, 2019]