Complaining about my condition, never acknowledging my contrition?  Wednesday, 14th week in ordinary time – Hosea 10: 1-7

Hosea chapter 10 must be read along with chapter 9. Hosea is a prophet with no filter. He comes with no disclaimer or warning that this text may not be suitable for some audiences. There is a no holds bar policy for this prophet who speaks God’s word to his own people of the Northern Kingdom, referred in this book by several names; Ephraim, Israel or Samaria. 

“You have played the whore, you have loved a prostitutes pay” (9:1). “They will get a miscarrying womb and dry breasts”(9:14) “Their root will be dried up and they shall bear no fruit” (9:16). ‘Even thought they give birth, God says he will kill the cherished offspring of their womb’. (9:16).Hosea does not mince words even though he himself is denounced as ‘a fool’ and as a man with a ‘mad spirit’ (9:7). Hosea sees himself as a sentinel for God over that of the beliefs of his countrymen for they have corrupted themselves. This is no misguided nationalistic prophet with a jingoistic agenda but a hard hitting man of God who fears but God alone. 

In Hosea we see a true servant of God for even though we would have liked this prophet of God to be more ‘godlike’  and tone down the rhetoric, he chooses to condemn the godless rather than be given human certifications of approval. 

Today’s reading reiterates the failure of Israel as a spiritual nation even though it flourished materially under King Jeroboam II  and had grown to be a prosperous country. The prophet acknowledges that  as a nation they are a ‘luxuriant wine that bears fruit’; indicating the wealth it had acquired. But the wealth that Israel acquired was used to build altars to the pagan god Baal. Ironically, they had received from the hand of Yahweh, the true God, but directed their thanksgiving to Baal, the false God. In this there is a glaring lesson for us who receive not by our merit but by God’s grace and yet it is to men that we direct our thanksgiving making humans our gods.

Spread the love ♥
Continue Reading