Hosea 7 shows judgment must fall on the nation that forgets God

When I would have healed Israel, then the iniquity of Ephraim was discovered, and the wickedness of Samaria(v1). People and rulers were dishonest; thieves broke into homes, people were mugged in the street (v2). There was drunkenness (v5), immorality (v4), corruption (v3) at every level of society. They never considered that God saw it all (v2, Psalm 90:8). They were beset by their own wrongdoing (v2). All their troubles were self-inflicted, the inevitable consequence of sin (Proverbs 5:22), the rejection of God’s Word and repudiation of His law (8:12). This is our problem today.

The nation has lost its way

   “You only have I known of all the families of the earth” (Amos 3:2). But they had lost their way in the world, were blind to their destiny, forgetful of all that the Lord had done for them. “Their land also is full of silver and gold [money], neither is there any end of their treasures [possessions]; their land is also full of horses, neither is there any end of their chariots [cars]: their land also is full of idols [consumer goods]; they worship the work of their own hands” (Isaiah 2:7–8).

Affluent but spiritually bankrupt

   “This was the iniquity of thy sister Sodom [ie. Israel], pride, fulness of bread and abundance of idleness was in her and in her daughters, neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy” (Ezekiel 16:49). They were an affluent nation but morally and spiritually bankrupt. Now they must reap what they had sown (Galatians 6:7, Psalm 9:17–18).

   “There is none among them that calleth unto Me(v7). “The pride of Israel testifieth to his face: and they do not return to the LORD their God, nor seek Him for all this” (v10). “They have not cried unto Me with their heart, when they howled upon their beds” (v14). Israel had six kings between 752 and 731 BC: all were fallen, four assassinated (2 Kings 15:10, 14, 23–25, 30, see also Proverbs 28:2). Yet in spite of all their troubles no one prayed. No one recognized that the cause of all their problems was spiritual. “And He saw that there was no man, and wondered that there was no intercessor(Isaiah 59:16, see also Ezekiel 22:30).

What is God saying to us today?

   “Ephraim also is like a silly dove without heart: they call to Egypt, they go to Assyria(v11). “Ephraim, he hath mixed himself among the people; ... strangers have devoured his strength” (v8–9). They were a declining, dying nation (v9), relying on false gods (v14) and alliances with other nations when only God could save them. “Associate yourselves, O ye people, and ye shall be broken in pieces; ... take counsel together, and it shall come to nought” (Isaiah 8:9–10).

   What is God saying to us today? “Blessed is the nation whose God is the LORD; and the people whom He hath chosen for His own inheritance” (Psalm 33:12). “Righteousness exalteth a nation: but sin is a reproach to any people” (Proverbs 14:34). “If My people, which are called by My name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land” (2 Chronicles 7:14).

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