Pastor’s Bible Reading Schedule: Hosea 5-8
The Lord addresses both Ephraim and Israel for their committing whoredoms. The picture is painted in James 4:4, “Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that friendship with the world is enmity with God, whosoever therefore will be the friend of the world is the enemy of God.” When we give our affection, attention, and allegiances to anything other than God, we commit spiritual adultery against Him. Israel and Judah had committed such adultery, and therefore God says He will “pour out my wrath upon them like water.” (vs. 10) God has clearly stated that His children are to be in the world, but not of the world. We are to function in the world and be salt and light unto them. We are to present Christ to the world in both the way we conduct ourselves and with our intentional conversation. We are never to give our love to the world or to the things of the world. (1 John 2:15-17) The songwriter accurately states that when our eyes are on Jesus, “the things of earth will grow strangely dim, in the light of His glory and grace.” Chapter five gives the warning of coming judgment. It is so important for all of us to realize that we too have a day of judgment coming. I am so grateful that I will never stand before God for my sin, because as Colossians 2:14 states, they “were taken out of the way, nailed to His cross.” However, the reward I earn will directly correspond to my obedience to God’s plan, in both action and attitude. Those things done in faith believing God, out of love for God, for the glory of God will be openly rewarded. Those things done in the flesh will burn! Where is your focus today? Israel and Judah got their eyes off of the Lord and off of their calling. God had set them apart to be a special people for His name. They were to be set apart from the world and all that opposed the plan of God. However, we find them constantly seeking after the things of the world in an attempt to be just like them. God being the perfect parent can never allow sin and disobedience and He promised to deal with both of them. Just as God promised, He punished both of these adulterous nations, and He will likewise deal perfectly with us as our parent. People stray when they get their eyes off of the Lord and focus on other things. We forget what we have been saved to do, and the calling upon our lives to be conformed to the image of Christ and not be conformed to this world. (Romans 12:2) Have you lost your focus? Are you looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of your faith? God will never tolerate spiritual adultery, as it is certain, He deserves our love and loyalty. The last verse of chapter five states, “I will go and return to my place, till they acknowledge their offence, and seek my face: in their affliction they will seek me early.” Do not wait for the chastening hand of God, run to Him and seek Him today.
• Lord, please help me to keep my eyes on you. I am so grateful for your love for me and for your sacrifice that made my salvation possible. I am eternally grateful that you walk with me and talk with me and desire fellowship with me.
• Lord, please help me to love sinners and hate their sin. Help me to see the world the way you see the world. Please help me to be bold to share the gospel and humble enough for them to see Christ in me.
• Lord, I realize this world had nothing to offer me. Please help me never desire the things of this world, but to always realize that I am just a pilgrim passing through.