The story of Hosea uses marriage to reveal the character of love. He is faithful to even the wife of adultery. The Lord breaks bondages with forgiveness and righteousness. (Hosea 2:6-20)

Speaker(s): Thomas Schaller
Sermon 12238
11:00 AM on 1/23/2022

 

P. Schaller –

Praise the Lord! Just while you are standing for a few minutes, let’s think about those words we just sang. Who
rescued you? Jesus rescued me. I was drowning out in the ocean and what did he do? He
rescued me. I was in a burning, flaming house on the third floor. What did he do? He rescued
me. I was in an orphanage without a father, without a mother and what happened? He rescued
me. I was in a fiery furnace and there were three Hebrew boys and a fourth one in the furnace
and what did he do? He rescued them. Did they smell smoke on their garments? Was their hair
hinged? No, he rescued me.

How about it? Let’s put our minds on him this morning and worship him. Say his name a few
times before you sit down. Just kind of get stirred up in your heart and say, Jesus. Go ahead.
Just say Jesus, Jesus, Jesus. I confessed any known sin in my life and Jesus you forgive me.
You have forgiven me. Your blood. Jesus, fill us with your Spirit. Jesus, we need you Lord. We
are in trouble. Say it with me. We are in trouble, but you, Jesus, you rescue me. You help me.
You save me. You forgive me. You love me. You fill me. Oh, Jesus Christ, the living God. He’s a
living God. He’s a living God. Is he like other gods? No, our Rock is not like their rock. Our God
is alive, immortal, invisible, the only wise God. How about the other gods? Who are they?
They’re dumb. They’re foolish. They don’t know.

Their wannabes. Yeah. They’re wannabes. Our God is a living God, a wise God, only wise God, eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God. Amen. Praise him and thank him. Say yes, Lord. Yes, Lord. You are awesome. You are
awesome. We praise you. Thank you, Jesus. Thank you, Jesus. Thank you, Jesus. Go ahead.
Just say thank you, Jesus. Thank you, Jesus. We need you, Jesus. We love you Jesus. You
came for us, Jesus. You’re the answer for life, Jesus.
Some people are afraid because they don’t have Jesus in their life. They don’t talk about Jesus.
They’re not thinking about Jesus. They’re not worshipping Jesus. Some people are hiding under
a stone somewhere because they don’t have God. But God we love them. We go to them. We
share with them. We understand them. We care about them. But we say seek the Lord and you
shall find him. He is not far from anyone of us. He is for you and he cares about you. Thank you,
Jesus. Thank you, Jesus.

Lord, Jesus may our church here, this assembly, always make a big deal about you. May we
always magnify you. May your Spirit reveal to us who you are. May you love us always. That we
would be lighthearted, thankful, joyful people. In Jesus’ name. Amen. Turn to your neighbor and
just say, you’re looking good today! What happened? You’re looking good. God is for you. He
loves you. Thank you, Jesus. Thank you, Lord. I like that song. Did you like it? I liked it. When
you heard the words, “when I’m in the fire there’s another in there with me,” did you catch that?
And the book of Daniel the three Hebrew boys in the fire and then there was the fourth one.
That makes all the difference.

This morning we are going to turn to a portion in Hosea. Before you do, I’m going to draw a little
picture of what we are going to be talking about today. Character of God. Very important.
Character of God. Who is he? If I know who God is in my life and I learn who he is, this is
fundamentally what carries me through my life. When I was ten years old, 20 years old – I’ll
write down the numbers – 30 years old, 40 years old. Anybody 40 years or younger here?
Anyone in the audience? Three people. Alright! I’m 50 years old, 60, 70 years old. You know
how I continue in my life with God? Do you know how it works? To know the character of God.
That’s the key.

There are believers that leave. They leave the faith. They drift off and there are different
reasons why. Some of them don’t believe the Bible is inerrant. What does the word “inerrant
mean? Without error. Here’s a little picture. Here’s the Bible. Here’s my brain. I read the Bible
and I do critiques on the Bible. I analyze the Bible, and the Bible is really under me. But Martin
Luther, one of the Reformers, the first one, actually the primary one in the beginning, when he
read a part of the Bible he didn’t understand, he would take his hat off in respect and keep reading and put his hat back on. Meaning, if I don’t understand something, I’m not the critic. I
could say, I’m going to go back to that. I’m going to learn that. My attitude is this is the Word of
God and it’s above me. It’s above me. The Spirit of God is above me. The Holy Spirit wrote the
Bible.

When a modern Christian who is hit with all kinds of ideologies, philosophies and religions and
he has questions about his faith, there are real answers. But I need God to give me answers.
That’s why we have our Bible college cause there are people that have studied and understand
and are learned and are very good at helping us in our growth and in our trust. But the modern
church, the church of today, has left the Bible or if they have the Bible, it’s under them. It’s under
them. It’s subject to my culture. My culture says. And the Bible says this so I agree with the
culture and not God’s Word, so there’s a lot of room for error in my thinking. When we are
studying, we are really interested in what the Spirit of God is saying, what the Bible is literally,
historically saying. Also, how does it apply to my life? It’s fantastic. I want to continue in my faith
with my walk with God all my life. I want to finish my course with joy Paul said. Can it be done?
Well, Billy Graham did it and his whole team and many saints throughout history: Augustine,
Luther, reformers, evangelicals, church fathers, Ignatius, Polycarp, people through history,
whole church movements all their lives. How do you do it? I just want to share today the
character of God.

That’s the key. The nature of God. Does he love me when I fail? Does he love
me when I’m weak, when I’m bored, when I’m tired? Is he there? I want to walk with God. God is
a living God and God wants to lead you in your life. Okay.
This is where we are going. We want to learn the character of God and we want to continue.
Those are just two things. #1. The character of God and the love, the love that draws us so we
continue in our faith. I have a great life. You have a great life because of God. It’s better to
follow God, the living God, than any other God. Okay. That’s the introduction to Hosea 2. Turn
there with me.

Why don’t you just kind of make sure you are awake by turning to your neighbor and saying,
what did he say? What did he say? I zoned out. What is he talking about? What’s he talking
about? Okay.

Hosea 2:6, now this is a very interesting prophet, Hosea. He’s asked by God to do something a
bit strange. He asked the prophet to marry a prostitute. He marries her. They have a couple
children and here’s the key. This is interesting. This woman he could not really trust. He actually
wasn’t sure if the woman that were born were his. My wife had these two children in the
beginning, two children, but I’m not sure who they are coming from if they are from me or from
someone else. Humanly speaking, that sounds like a nightmare. That is not good that I could
not trust my wife. Did she cheat on me or did she not? Who has she been with? Who are these
children actually?

What’s the meaning of this? The Lord is saying I am married to Israel. Israel is my wife. But
Israel has left me and gone to other gods and she’s playing around with other gods, worshipping
other gods and chasing after them. They are not satisfying her. They are not enough for her, but
she’s like playing around, running around lustfully going after other gods that are not gods. They
are empty.

Notice something. We have a human story and parallel to a spiritual story that God is saying this
is about me and my people. Let’s add a third parallel and say the United States of America. The
United States of America had a beginning with spiritual revival. We had universities dedicated to
training ministers. We had fire in the pulpits. We had missionaries. We had pastors. We had
messages. We had a spiritual, a nation that partially, not totally with evil that is always
happening everywhere in different ways, but at the same time, many persecuted Christians
came from Europe here and they were looking for God. And there were revivals. There really
were. There were house meetings and prayer meetings and there were 30,000 people listening
to George Whitfield in Philadelphia. Benjamin Franklin was at the meeting.

And Benjamin Franklin was the one that measured, – he counted out, he estimated how many people were listening to him. It’s very interesting history. But have we as a nation left God and gone after other lovers? What lovers are there? There’s a love for money. There’s a love for women. There’s a love for success. There’s a love for
popularity and self-importance. There’s a love to be important. There are many lust patterns that
we have in our hearts and we can find the gods that we can chase after.
But God is saying this is like prostitution, because I did not make you to go after the things of
your own heart. You will go after them and try to find them, but you cannot find the satisfaction.
You know when you have pleasure, there’s thresholds, and sometimes when you find the
pleasure, it’s not enough so you go up higher to another intensity. More. More. It’s not enough.
So the threshold can change because I can’t find the satisfaction in this world without God. So
this is what’s happening.

Chapter 2:6, we’ll read quite a bit today. Because she has played the harlot. Maybe we should
go back to vs. 5 for context. This is after she is married. After she’s married, she says I will go
after my lovers, vs. 6. This is God speaking. The woman is actually in trouble cause she’s in a
way lost. There’s a wall. She can’t find her path. There’s thorns in the way. How many of us
have experienced the pain that comes from sinful living. How many have lied down in your
vomit? How many have looked for your paycheck and couldn’t find it cause you gambled it away
or drank it up? How many of us maybe with a broken heart with a woman or a man? How many
of us have been saddened by what happened, where my sin took me? How easily that is that
that can happen. vs. 7. that means she can’t get them. She goes after them, but they have
forsaken her. The gods of this world, they will forsake you. The gods that offer you a good deal.
How many times have you been offered a good deal only to read the fine print later? They don’t
care about you. It’s painful.

vs. 7. What is the meaning of that? She’s going after her lovers, can’t catch them. Life is hard,
so she says I remember when I was in Sunday School. I think I need to go to the church, but
she might also say I met this Christian. I don’t know why they’re kind of quiet and they smile and
they’re at peace. I wonder what they have. I remember maybe when I was born again, when I
was 18 years old. Now I’m 30. I remember the joy I had. I remember the peace. I remember
they say the Holy Spirit fills you. I think that happened to me. I found my Bible. But those are
days long ago. I’m not doing that anymore. But there’s a pull.

There’s a pull where it’s God. I don’t want to go to the church. I don’t know where’s God? I’ll go to the ocean or the starry sky. I’m looking for God. God is saying do you remember? Do you remember my visitation? Do you
remember the peace? Do you remember the love? Do you know my character? Do you know
who I am? Yeah, but you’re so quiet and nothing happening. I’m after the fire and maybe the
liveliness. I’m after the excitement of a new relationship and the adrenaline rush of an affair, or
the loneliness or my depression.

I met a brother who was newly born again and in Bible college in Europe. He said, we asked is
there anything you are missing? He said I’m missing depression. I used to be able to get
depressed and stay home and be depressed and I miss that! You know, the teacher said yes, I
know what you mean. We have lost our lives. We have found Christ. In Christ there is not
depression. Do you hear what I’m saying? We all have a lust pattern in our flesh that will take us
away from God, but there is a calling that God is wanting to show you his character and how
good it is to know him and trust him and lean on him.

Let’s go to the next verse. I will return to my first husband she said, vs. 7. Because of time and
it’s a long text to deal with, we’ll jump from there to vs. 14. We’re heading towards vs. 20. This is
because she’s in pain and very lost in many ways. vs. 14. I think vs. 14 is a memory verse for
you. What’s a memory verse? It’s a verse you memorize. You memorize the verse. You write it
on an index card. You carry it in your pocket. You put it on the dash of your car. Pay attention to
the traffic when you are driving! But at the stop light you can memorize the verse. I will allure her
and bring her into the wilderness. I’ll bring her into the wilderness. There’s nothing there but me.
Maybe that’s good for us.

Do you know that I believe the covid has been allowed by God in our world as a gentle wakeup
call to people to say to them you need me. It’s not enough. The government isn’t enough. The
pharmaceuticals isn’t enough. The medical care isn’t enough. Money isn’t enough. Your security
isn’t enough. Your house isn’t enough. Your job isn’t enough. Your family isn’t enough. You’re
going to die. You’re going to die and nobody will be there. Nobody is there.
One line we heard this weekend was – a brother said to somebody he didn’t know. He wanted
to witness to them. He said you just breathed your last breath. Where are you now? Where are
you? Without God, we’re lost. We have God. Why did you come to God? I know with me, I was
in a wilderness in my soul asking the question. I had a friend who was killed. Seventeen years
old. I was 17. He was 17.

He was a great guy. He was killed one night in a car accident. I was
supposed to be in the car. I went to the funeral at the cemetary and stood there and I started to
seek God. He will bring you into the wildnerness, allure you and how will he speak to you? Here
it is. This is important, vs. 14. Do you know what the word means? Encouraging. He will
encourage you because he is a father. Wait a minute. He is in this text here, his name is Ishi.
He is a husband. Husband. But he’s an amazing husband. God is an amazing husband. We’ll
see it in a minute. I am a husband like even if you betray me, even if you cheat on me, I will
teach you. I’m going to speak comfortably, encouragingly to you. I’m going to love you. I’m going
to forgive you. I’m going to give you grace. I’m going to visit you. I will be waiting for you. I am
for you. I am an amazing husband.

You will call me husband and you will not call me Baali
which means master or boss. You will not call me like a guy that could be tough. A guy that
would be hard. A guy that would judge you. My wife cheated on me the prophet could say. God
says tell her that she is welcome. Tell her. I allure her into the wildnerness and I will speak
encouragingly to her. I will forgive her and she will not call me a boss. She will call me husband.
Let’s read it. Chapter 2:15. Valley of Achor was where Achan was stoned to death. It was a
place of judgment. The Valley of Achor was a nightmare. The Valley of Achor was a tragic,
terrible scene of how God would not tolerate sin and covetousness and the family was stoned
and judged. And the Lord said I will give her this for a door of hope.

I will give the Valley of Achor for a door of hope. I will not judge her. I will forgive her. I will give her instead of judgment,
I’ll give her hope. Instead of sin and hell, I’ll give her the cross and heaven. I will forgive her by
the blood of my Son. I will forgive her of her sin. I will give her a new life. I will teach her what
love is. I will show her my character that she can trust me, that I care about her.
Let’s read it, vs. 16. You will call me Ishi. Say it to your neighbor. You will call me Ishi. Say it to
the air. Maybe it’s not appropriate to say it to your neighbor. Call me Ishi, husband. Oh no! Oh
no! Don’t do that. Call me Ishi. You say to the Lord, you will not call me Baali. Okay. Listen to
this please. I believe there are Christians out there they think God is Baali. They do. Wait a
minute. Hold it. Keep attention here.

Do you know what these numbers mean? Twenty years
old, 30 years old, 40 years old. By the time you are 40, do you know what you think of God?
You think he’s Baali. You think he’s the boss. You think he judges you. You are tired. You have
a concept of God. You have developed a concept where you think it’s hard. It’s not hard. It’s
easy. Come unto me. Learn of me. I am meek and lowly. Are you kidding me? I’m not here to
judge you. I’m here to love you. I will lead you by my love. I will forgive you and you will trust me.
You will discover from me, from God, in my heart, the heart of God, he will reveal to you his love
and you can trust him and call him Ishi, husband.

And it means this: you are my husband. You have won my heart. I trust you. There’s nobody
else. I’m not looking in any other direction. This is like sounds awesome. You might say
practically speaking, that’s not my situation. Good word. That’s not your situation with your
present husband but spiritually that is your situation with the living God. The living God says to
you, I love you. I love you more than your husband. I love you more than anything human. I love
you more than you can ever imagine. I am the living God. That’s what it means.

Go to the next verse, please. vs. 17-19. Betrothing is like marriage, like a new marriage.
Betrothing. I’m going to do it again so to speak. I’m going to tell you who I am. I’m going to betroth you. I’m going to court you. I’m engaged to you. I marry you. Like when I brought you
out of Egypt. That’s what he says here. When I brought you out of Egypt, I married you. I
brought you out of Egypt to be my people and I am your God and I revealed myself to you. And
now he is like saying this again when Israel has gone away from God.
Maybe we can say the United States of America even though we have on our money “In God
We Trust,” even though we have churches around street corners and through communities;
many of those churches are empty and also many of them are for sale and also many of them
are filled with five old people. What has happened to the next generation? Where have they
gone? Where is the Bible gone?

The reason you come here is because you want to learn the Bible and know God and his character and nature and continue in it and teaching it to your children and your children’s children, Deuteronomy 29:29. Who is God? Well, he’s this one. Let’s read it and finish it. vs. 19. Let me write these words down. “Righteousness.” Did you know
that God cannot lie? Did you know he’s righteous? He can’t fool around. He is righteous. He’s
God. He’s righteous. He doesn’t lie like people. He’s true. He’s true to the core. He’s righteous.
This is the key. He cannot cheat. He cannot cheat on you. He will be faithful to you. He is not a
man that he would lie. He is faithful to you. When he died on the cross, how many are following
him? Virtually nobody but he’s dying for us. He is righteous.

He is saving us. He is righteous. Look at vs. 19. Judgment and then the two words on the other side are mercy and
lovingkindness. And he will do it all in faithfulness. Faithfulness. Each one of these words need
an explanation but we are not doing that right now. I just want you to see this marriage is all
about the husband saying I know who you are but it’s not going to stop me from loving you. I
know how much you fail but it’s not going to stop me from being righteous and merciful. I will be
faithful. I am faithful. I am God.

Fast forward. I’m 30, 40, 50 years old. I’m afraid. I’m tired. Do you know what I need? God. I
need God. I need God in my heart. I need God to visit me. I need God in the assembly. By
myself it’s not enough. I need God and the Holy Spirit and he’s ordained the assembly. I need
the Word of God to renew my mind. I need God again, again to seek him, to trust him and wait
on him.

Tonight, I’m going to share on this principle of waiting on God. Waiting on God. It’s in the
Scripture in many places. Israel 40:31 and many other places. Psalm 123. Waiting on God. So this
happened to me recently. I wake up in the morning. I’m kind of nervous. I’m a little bit upset in
my own heart somehow. I’m troubled about things. You can put in there any number of things.
I’m not going to tell you what I was – it doesn’t matter. It’s common for all of us. You worry about
maybe the ones you love. You worry about your family. Maybe you worry about the future.
Maybe you worry about your money. Maybe you worry about your family. There’s underlying
anxiety that you have in your life about life. How’s it going? What’s going to happen? It happens
to all of us.

Look at what we are saying. Where do I go? What do I do? I quiet myself and I come in my
heart before God and I cast all my care on him, all my care, because he cares for me. Who?
God. My husband or Jesus could say in the Gospels – he did say 80 times. Father. Call him
Father. The word “father” is 80 times in our New Testament. Father. It’s you. That’s what I want.
I want to know you. I want to trust you. I want to walk with you. Fill me with your Spirit. I don’t
worry about things. The Holy Spirit is our Comforter and our teacher. Wait upon God. Just know
he is in charge. He’s going to take care of you. He’s going to fill you. He’s going to use you.
You’ll have peace. You have Jesus in your life. You’ll be in a wheel chair maybe one day. I don’t
want that. Maybe that’s one of the things I worry about. I don’t know! Like it might be in my mind.
I go to the nursing home and I go to these assisted living facilities to visit our people and to think
that one day that’s how we are going to wrap it up.

Okay. How do I take it? What do I do? Fight against it? What do I do about it? Well, I want to – I’m not worried about it because I know who God is. Is there pain in life? Yes. But there’s also God. There’s the Comforter. Have you ever
failed. Yes, but you have the most amazing, living God in the whole that you could ever imagine.

The one that loves you and forgives you and calls you. Now let’s say you’re a young man 20 years old. You’re after God. Go after God with all your heart. All your strength. Go after God. Find him. Know him. Share him. Be a missionary. Go 30
days somewhere in the world. Somewhere where they don’t know about Jesus and die over
there. Go for 30 days and maybe you will die over there! Go for it. Learn to get trained and go
and share. Be used. You could. Or some other picture but in any case, wow! Okay. Amen.
Would you pray with me?

 

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