Gomer will be lost (Hos 2:6-2:7)

“Therefore,

I will hedge up

Her way

With thorns.

I will build a wall

Against her,

So that she cannot find

Her paths.

She shall pursue

Her lovers,

But not overtake them.

She shall seek them,

But shall not find them.

Then she shall say.

‘I will go.

I will return

To my first husband.

It was better

With me then

Than now.’”

The prophet Hosea was going to make it difficult for Gomer. He was going to build a wall of hedges around her. Then, she would not be able to follow her paths. She might want to pursue her lovers, but she would not be able to reach them. She would go looking for them, but not find them. Finally, she would say, maybe I should return to my first husband. I was better off then with him. Once again, Gomer was a symbol of the lost Israel, seeking the Baal gods, but finally deciding to come home to Yahweh, their first husband.

The divorced wife (Jer 3:1-3:1)

“‘If a man divorces his wife,

She goes from him.

If she becomes another man’s wife,

Will he return to her?

Would not such a land

Be greatly polluted?

You have played the whore

With many lovers.

Would you return to me?’

Says Yahweh.”

Jeremiah has Yahweh speak about a divorced wife. If she leaves him and becomes the wife of another, would he return to her? The answer is obviously not, because he has already divorced her. According to Deuteronomy, chapter 24, the first husband cannot remarry anyway. She has become another man’s wife. Also this would pollute the land in trying to figure out who is the father of her children. Yahweh explains that the Israelites have been prostitutes with many lovers. Would they return to him? This presupposes that he has divorced himself from them.