We are in the Exile Stream reading from the Easy-to-Read Version this week.
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Commentary by Dr. Drake Travis
Lord, let this sorry tale of the northern Kingdom only remind us that you do not play games with the disobedient. Let it remind and urge us to follow you, follow you today, and to follow you fully. Amen.
9 – Israel’s love for God has rotted. It started out as affection that was pure but it has become like garbage gone bad “late in the day”. Israel has loved rotten things … now they have gone totally rotten themselves. God needs to discard them. Their future needs to be cut off because a rotten present (that Israel is committed to) signifies a rotten future.
Nothing signals that there’s a future like a baby arriving. Well God is going to end this and Israel is going to have no more babies. What does survive, God will “take” those babies. It’s too disturbing to describe what the Assyrian soldiers did to Israel’s helpless babies during the seige. And you don’t want to know. Email my husband, if you really need to know as this era was his major in college. Believe me, it’s bad. Well, Israel had killed its own faith and done so deliberately and it won’t be long now until Assyria kills every Israelite baby they can find. Too rough? Is God being too mean? Willful sin takes things in a far worse direction than the deliberate sinner ever dreamed he would be taken in his worst nightmare. They would become a homeless nation. And historically, these tribes of the north were scattered into the “compost heap” of history.
10 – Israel has erred greatly in that they used their wealth and fertile land and blessing to, do what?!, to make idols! Their aimlessness is turned lunacy. We’ve heard the phrase, “wherever, you go, there you are.” With Israel, wherever they go in their minds and hearts and sinfulness, “they aren’t there either. When someone isn’t thinking clearly, we declare, “they’re not all there.” This is Israel completely. They have a king, but they don’t – not really, they make promises that they don’t keep (so what were they promising?), their judges merely poison everything, they worship a calf – it gets stolen, they make pacts with other countries – with those that hate them and then invade, their altars of worship will turn into piles of weeds … so what are they worshiping? The nation is crazy.
Israel has been sinning and sinning so horribly, so constantly, and for so long. All these centuries they could have been planting good things that grew into great things. But Israel planted evil and lies and false hope (in their sinful commitments). Btw, the man “Shalman” mentioned in Hosea 10:14 was an Assyrian King, His full name was Shall-man-EASE-err. Whoever completes the conquest of Israel, Israel is going to be fully destroyed. It’s basically over for them.