Hosea 2 continues the story of the prophet and the prostitute. God begins by showing just how broken the relationship is with His people. “She is not my wife, and I am not her husband; And let her put away her harlotry from her face And her adultery from between her breasts, Or I will strip her naked And expose her as on the day when she was born”. God paints Israel as an adulterous wife, who is no longer worthy to be compared to a wife. This shows that relationship is broken. Though relationship is broken, blessing continues – but will be taken away if Israel does not turn.
“I will have no compassion on her children, Because they are children of harlotry”. If Israel as a whole is represented as an unfaithful wife, then her children represent the individual people of Israel. If they do not turn back to the Lord, they will personally experience His judgment. We often forget the impact of sin on future generations. Scripture is clear that it doesn’t just impact the sinner, but those who follow. Being unfaithful in our walk with God will have effect for many to come. How we live truly does matter.
God has a plan to try and help Israel stay the course. “I will hedge up her way with thorns, And I will build a wall against her so that she cannot find her paths”. To bring Israel to repentance, God promised to set a hedge of thorns on the sides of her path, so that it would hurt whenever Israel went off the correct path, and so the wrong paths would be hard to find. God promises that we will never be tempted beyond our ability to control the temptation. But there are times in life we may be so far off course we can’t even see the path. God is intent on helping us find our way.
But God is always in the business of restoration. “It will come about in that day….That you will call Me Ishi (my husband) And will no longer call Me Baali (my master).” With great anticipation, God looks forward to the day when relationship is genuinely restored with His people. He wants an intimate love-relationship with His people, and longs for the day when His people will have a marriage-like love and commitment to their God. God was not satisfied with a fear-based, obedience-focused relationship with His people where they thought of Him primarily as Master. He wanted a relationship where they thought of Him primarily as Husband. God wants us back. He is all about relationship and having us in right standing with Him!