Sundays | 9am & 10:30am | The Woodlands, TX

Limitless Grace: Hosea 1

The word of the Lord that came to Hosea, the son of Beeri, in the days of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah, kings of Judah, and in the days of Jeroboam the son of Joash, king of Israel. 2 When the Lord first spoke through Hosea, the Lord said to Hosea, “Go, take to yourself a wife of whoredom and have children of whoredom, for the land commits great whoredom by forsaking the Lord.” 3 So he went and took Gomer, the daughter of Diblaim, and she conceived and bore him a son. 4 And the Lord said to him, “Call his name Jezreel, for in just a little while I will punish the house of Jehu for the blood of Jezreel, and I will put an end to the kingdom of the house of Israel. 5 And on that day I will break the bow of Israel in the Valley of Jezreel.” 6 She conceived again and bore a daughter. And the Lord said to him, “Call her name No Mercy, for I will no more have mercy on the house of Israel, to forgive them at all. 7 But I will have mercy on the house of Judah, and I will save them by the Lord their God. I will not save them by bow or by sword or by war or by horses or by horsemen.” 8 When she had weaned No Mercy, she conceived and bore a son. 9 And the Lord said, “Call his name Not My People, for you are not my people, and I am not your God.” 10 Yet the number of the children of Israel shall be like the sand of the sea, which cannot be measured or numbered. And in the place where it was said to them, “You are not my people,” it shall be said to them, “Children of the living God.” 11 And the children of Judah and the children of Israel shall be gathered together, and they shall appoint for themselves one head. And they shall go up from the land, for great shall be the day of Jezreel.
—Hosea 1 (ESV)

Icebreaker - If you stopped someone in the street and asked them what sin was, how might they respond? How might the response be different if you asked someone coming out of church on a Sunday?

Read Hosea 1:1–3

Question - What is surprising and shocking about what God asks Hosea to do?

Question - Why does God tell Hosea to do this? How might you expect Hosea to react? How does he respond?

Question - How does what happens here illustrate the seriousness of Israel’s sin?

Read Romans 3:22-23

Question - What does the start of Hosea show us about ourselves? How do you feel about this?

Question - Think back to your answers to the Icebreaker question. Do you view sin as breaking rules or breaking a relationship? Do you find your sin as shocking as Gomer’s treatment of Hosea? What difference will this description of sin make to you this week?

Read verses 4–9

The wording of the descriptions of Gomer’s children strongly suggests that the second and third children weren’t Hosea’s—someone else was the father. And yet Hosea is told to raise them as his own—and to give them significant names. His first, “Jezreel” (v 4), was the site of a famous massacre caused by people turning away from God. Unsurprisingly, these three names aren’t trendy nowadays!

Question - Why does God ask Hosea to give the children these names?

Read Hosea 1:10–2:1

Question - How are things turned around in these verses?

Question - How are God’s promises here more than simply a reversal of fortunes for God’s people?
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