Hosea looks for an adulteress (Hos 3:1-3:1)

“Yahweh said to me.

‘Go!

Love a woman

Who has a lover!

Love an adulteress!

Just as Yahweh loves

The people of Israel,

Though they turn

To other gods.

They love raisin cakes.’”

Yahweh went to Hosea again. He told him to go love a woman who has a lover already. He was to love an adulteress. This time, there is a clear explanation of why he was doing this. He was to follow the attitude of Yahweh. Yahweh has loved the people of Israel, even though they have turned to other gods. These Israelites seemed to love the pagan raisin cakes at the religious services for these idol gods.

My people will have love and pity (Hos 2:21-2:23)

“Says Yahweh.

‘On that day,

I will answer

The heavens.

They shall answer

The earth.

The earth shall answer

The grain,

The wine,

The oil.

They shall answer

Jezreel.

I will sow him

For myself

In the land.

I will have pity

On Lo-ruhamah.

I will say to

Lo-ammi.

‘You are my people.’

He shall say.

‘You are my God.’”

Yahweh was very clear. On that day, he was going to respond to the heavens, just as the heavens would respond to earth. The earth would respond to the grain, wine, and oil. They would answer to Jezreel, that had been the residence of the kings of the northern kingdom of Israel. Yahweh was going to sow in the land itself. Finally, he would have pity and love for Lo-ruhamah, the not pitied one. He too would rename Lo-ammi, from not my people to you are my people. He was going to be their God. Thus, all would end well.

Everlasting marriage (Hos 2:19-2:20)

“I will take you

For my wife

Forever.

I will take you

For my wife

In righteousness,

In justice,

In steadfast love,

In mercy.

I will take you

For my wife

In faithfulness.

You shall know Yahweh.”

Next Yahweh committed to an everlasting marriage. Yahweh was going to take Israel as his wife for all time, forever. She would be his wife in righteousness, justice, love, and mercy. Israel would be a faithful wife. Thus, she would truly know Yahweh, God.

The new covenant (Hos 2:18-2:18)

“On that day,

I will make

For you

A covenant

With the wild animals,

The birds of the air,

The creeping things

Of the ground.

I will abolish

The bow,

The sword,

War from the land.

I will make you

Lie down in safety.”

On that day to come, Yahweh said that he was going to make a new covenant with the wild animals, the birds, and the creeping things. He was going to abolish the bow, the sword, and even fighting in general. War would be no more. This futuristic peace time would mean that they could lie down in safety. Was this the messianic age to come with worldwide peace?

The fight against Baal (Hos 2:16-2:17)

“Yahweh says.

‘On that day,

You will call me.

‘My husband.’

No longer

Will you call me.

‘My Baal.’

I will remove

The names of the Baals

From her mouth.

They shall be mentioned

By name

No more.’”

Yahweh said the Israelites would no longer call out the name Baal. Actually, this term meant master or lord, a term that was used later in addressing Yahweh, the God of Israel, especially with the Greek κγριος. Yahweh was going to be the husband of Israel. Baal would be removed from the mouths of these Israelites. No longer would his name be mentioned.

Yahweh will reconcile with Israel (Hos 2:14-2:15)

“‘Therefore,

I will now allure her.

I will bring her

Into the wilderness.

I will speak tenderly

To her.

From there,

I will give her

Her vineyards.

I will make

The Valley of Achor

A door of hope.

There she shall respond

As in the days

Of her youth,

As at the time.

When she came out

Of the land of Egypt.’”

Now Yahweh was going to lure her back into the wilderness. He was going to speak tenderly to her. Her vineyards would be returned. The Valley of Achor, near Jericho, would be a door of hope for her, instead of a place of sin. Then Israel would respond, as in the days of her youth in the wilderness, after she left Egypt.

The punishment for Israel (Hos 2:13-2:13)

“‘I will punish her

For the festival days

Of the Baals.

There she burned

Incense to them.

She decked herself

With her ring,

With jewelry.

She went after

Her lovers.

She forgot me.’

Says Yahweh.”

The “her” here is clearly Israel in this oracle of Yahweh. Israel had prostituted itself by running to the false idol Baal gods. Yahweh was going to punish the people of Israel, because they were burning incense to these gods on the festival days of Baal. Israel, like Gomer, decked herself out with a ring and jewelry. When she sought her idol lovers, she forgot Yahweh.