Tuesday, November 25, 2008

The Bigger Message

Once in a while someone gives a sermon, writes a book, or whatever that strikes close to home. We all had an experience at one point where we are sitting in church and the pastor gives such a sermon where we say to ourselves, "He's talking about me." I had that experience a few years ago when my pastor showed a short video based on the book of Hosea. If you haven't seen it yet I recommend you follow the link in my post below. I can't tell you the last time where I have seen the essentials of the gospel broken down into a nugget so beautifully. This little video made me speechless. If you have spent any time with me you'd know that is a very rare occurrence. This video means a lot to me because during the time I was going through a horrible financial and personal crisis and I felt God had drawn away from me. During the dark night of my soul for some reason I was drawn to start reading the book of Hosea. Then I got to the second chapter. I felt as though a loving arm was put around my shoulder as God spoke to me through the vollowing verses:

Hosea 2
1 "Say of your brothers, 'My people,' and of your sisters, 'My loved one.'

2 "Rebuke your mother, rebuke her,
for she is not my wife,
and I am not her husband.
Let her remove the adulterous look from her face
and the unfaithfulness from between her breasts.

3 Otherwise I will strip her naked
and make her as bare as on the day she was born;
I will make her like a desert,
turn her into a parched land,
and slay her with thirst.

4 I will not show my love to her children,
because they are the children of adultery.

5 Their mother has been unfaithful

and has conceived them in disgrace.
She said, 'I will go after my lovers,
who give me my food and my water,
my wool and my linen, my oil and my drink.'

6 Therefore I will block her path with thornbushes;
I will wall her in so that she cannot find her way.

7 She will chase after her lovers but not catch them;

she will look for them but not find them.
Then she will say,
'I will go back to my husband as at first,
for then I was better off than now.'

8 She has not acknowledged that I was the one
who gave her the grain, the new wine and oil,
who lavished on her the silver and gold—
which they used for Baal.

9 "Therefore I will take away my grain when it ripens,
and my new wine when it is ready.
I will take back my wool and my linen,
intended to cover her nakedness.

10 So now I will expose her lewdness
before the eyes of her lovers;
no one will take her out of my hands.

11 I will stop all her celebrations:
her yearly festivals, her New Moons,
her Sabbath days—all her appointed feasts.

12 I will ruin her vines and her fig trees,
which she said were her pay from her lovers;
I will make them a thicket,
and wild animals will devour them.

13 I will punish her for the days
she burned incense to the Baals;
she decked herself with rings and jewelry,
and went after her lovers,
but me she forgot,"
declares the LORD.

14 "Therefore I am now going to allure her;
I will lead her into the desert
and speak tenderly to her.

15 There I will give her back her vineyards,
and will make the Valley of Achor a door of hope.
There she will sing as in the days of her youth,
as in the day she came up out of Egypt.

16 "In that day," declares the LORD,
"you will call me 'my husband';
you will no longer call me 'my master.'

17 I will remove the names of the Baals from her lips;
no longer will their names be invoked.

18 In that day I will make a covenant for them
with the beasts of the field and the birds of the air
and the creatures that move along the ground.
Bow and sword and battle
I will abolish from the land,
so that all may lie down in safety.

19 I will betroth you to me forever;
I will betroth you in righteousness and justice,
in love and compassion.

20 I will betroth you in faithfulness,
and you will acknowledge the LORD.

21 "In that day I will respond,"
declares the LORD—
"I will respond to the skies,
and they will respond to the earth;

22 and the earth will respond to the grain,
the new wine and oil,
and they will respond to Jezreel.

23 I will plant her for myself in the land;

I will show my love to the one I called 'Not my loved one. '
I will say to those called 'Not my people, ' 'You are my people';
and they will say, 'You are my God.' "

So God just called me a big whore. For years I chased other god's though I proclaimed to be a Christian. How does that verse go? Though I proclaimed your name with my lips, my heart was far away from him? God rightly withdrew. In that moment God revealed to me that he was going to continue to withdraw from me, but in His time he was going to call me back as His bride. Just as Hosea paid a heavy price to get his wife back God through Jesus Christ paid the ultimate price to bring me back to make me His pure bride.

Looking back on it now though God spoke directly to me in this message it is one that should speak to us all. This is the gospel. Jesus paid the price to bring His bride back home to Him so that we may call Him "our God" and He call us "my people". Which of us can hear something like that and not see it applies to us all. It's not just for the individual. For the non-believer it is a new hope to bring them into a relationship with the most high and righteous God. For the believer it is our ongoing hope to draw us closer to our Husband.

Again we can become God's beloved. How cool is that? For the second time in a day here's the video.


posted by Out Of Jersey | 11:05 AM


Blogger Jagzier said...

Awesome Dave, Thank you for posting this :). You will have to write a sequel and tell us how you came back to the Lord :).

12:58 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home