23 April 2008

Seeking God When You Haven't Been

From the archives of my notebook . . . notes from Main Event (10/20/07)

Hosea 1:2-3
2When the LORD began to speak through Hosea, the LORD said to him, "Go, take to yourself an adulterous wife and children of unfaithfulness, because the land is guilty of the vilest adultery in departing from the LORD." 3 So he married Gomer daughter of Diblaim, and she conceived and bore him a son.

God wanted to lavish his love on Israel. Hosea : Gomer = God : Us. We have lived in adultery with the world. We are unfaithful to God.

Hosea 3:1-2
The LORD said to me, "Go, show your love to your wife again, though she is loved by another and is an adulteress. Love her as the LORD loves the Israelites, though they turn to other gods and love the sacred raisin cakes." 2 So I bought her for fifteen shekels of silver and about a homer and a lethek of barley.

Grace is built into the law. God would be just to send us all to hell, but He loves us. He forgives us. God doesn't remember our sins when we ask for forgiveness. He doesn't bring it up again.

Hosea 2:14-23 (look it up; read it.)

1) He allures us tenderly (v. 14)
-we've sought the things of this world: adultery.
-God doesn't divorce us. He allures us to Himself.
-God is begging for us to love him alone.
-His grace = undeserved favor, love

2) God promises us hope (v. 15)
Joshua 6:15 - 7:1 is the first place Israel "cheats on" God.

Psalm 16:11 - We find joy in the presence of God

3) God renews his wife's engagement. (Our first passion for God)

Hosea 2:19-20

I will betroth you to me forever; I will betroth you in righeousness and justice, in love and compassion. I will betroth you in faithfulness, and you will acknowledge the Lord.
Like Gomer, we are a sinful and adulterous people.

God says to us sinful people, "I love you. I miss you, and I want you back." He gives us a "do-over." There is hope for our future. Liars can regain trust. Thieves can start over. We are not labeled forever. Whether it is sexual sin, gossip, gluttony, laziness, being proud, etc., God runs to us, asking us if we want a new start.

4) v. 20 "acknowledge" - to know, to have intimacy with...

God doesn't declare us worthless, but he wants to have an intimate relationship with us.

How do we respond to earthly relationships? Why aren't we desiring to spend as much time with God as a boyfriend? Why don't we write love letters to Him?

Personally, I struggle with passionately seeking God. But how awesome is it that my Creator runs to me, offering me a new start when I screw up?


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