Good day to each of you reading this column that resonates in today’s society. It is so interesting that Hosea received insight on the conditions that were prevalent in Israel prior to the Assyrian invasion.
If you would turn to Hosea 4:1-6 (Smith & Goodspeed) “Hear the word of the Lord, O Israelites! For the Lord has a quarrel with the inhabitants of the land; Because there is no fidelity, no kindness, and no knowledge of God in the land. Cursing, lying, murder, theft, and adultery— They break out, and one crime follows hard upon another. Therefore the land mourns, and everything that dwells therein languishes, Even to the beasts of the earth, and the birds of the air; And the fish of the sea also are swept away, “Yet, let no one make charges, and let no one accuse; For with you is my quarrel, O priest; And you stumble by day; The prophet shall stumble with you by night; And I will destroy your people. My people are destroyed for want of knowledge— Because you have rejected knowledge, I will reject you from being my priest. Since you have forgotten the law of your God, I likewise will forget your children.
After reading each of the above words, you must agree that our Israelite lands have begun to cancel God for foreign gods. Whether it be our people in office, lawyers, judges, teachers, decisionmakers, the media, technology companies or internet sources, we are under attack for being a Christian.
O Christian, where is the fidelity of being a Christian nation when according to a 2018 PEW Research Center Survey that only 18% United Kingdom people attend church services, Canada is 13%, the USA is 19%, Australia is 17% and New Zealand is 15%.
Instead of fidelity and kindness in our lands, we are seeing mounting antagonism against the divine values. As an example, let’s look at the past 60 years in the USA where in 1962 the Supreme Court ruled that prayer in public schools was unconstitutional. In 1973, the Supreme Court declared that public schools could no longer allow the Bible to be read in classrooms.
1973, or just 50 years ago, the Supreme Court legalized abortion nationwide or the famous Roe vs Wade case which has become resurrected and hopefully overturned. 1980 the court decided it was a violation of the Constitution to post copies of the Ten Commandments in public schools.
In 2015, the Supreme Court struck down laws prohibiting homosexual marriage and just 5 years later, the 1964 Civil Rights Act was reinterpreted to include sexual orientation and transgender rights.
Where is the knowledge of God in the land? We see plenty of Cursing, lying, murder, theft, and adultery— They break out, and one crime follows hard upon another. Whether it be the airwaves, the TV waves, on the internet or wherever one gets communication, including the paper, we see these things unfolding before our eyes.
When reading the following verses, the following word came to mind which was a forewarning. Therefore the land mourns, and everything that dwells therein languishes, Even to the beasts of the earth, and the birds of the air; And the fish of the sea also are swept away,
Here is the NIV version—Because of this the land dries up, and all who live in it waste away; the beasts of the field and the birds of the air and the fish of the sea are dying.
Upon doing further research on the above verse, I turned to Howard Rand’s study in Hosea where he is quoted as saying it is quite evident from the warnings of the prophets that, when the conditions become the established pattern of a life in a nation, the end of God’s patience is reached and the next step is the descent of judgment.
Mr. Rand uses the double witness—turn to Jeremiah 23:10— “The land is full of adulterers; for because of swearing the land mourneth; the pleasant places of the wilderness are dried up, and their course is evil, and their force is not right.”
Drought or the withholding of rain in the due season alters the habits each and every living creature, whether it be the fish of the sea, the fowl of the air, the beast that walks on the land. One needs to go no further than review the first Egyptian plague where fish die, the river smells and the people are without water.
God’s judgment begins with enormous changes in the weather and these changes or signs at that particular moment in time, as read in the Bible, are to forewarn future generations of what will happen so that we can check the state of our individual and national spirituality.
God has warned us for he says, For with you is my quarrel, O priest; And you stumble by day; The prophet shall stumble with you by night; And I will destroy your people.
Upon examining this verse, the term “priest” plays such an importance function for “priest” biblically can be used as one who officiates at the altar. Priests fall under the Aaronic order of priesthood as established when Israel was organized into the kingdom of God.
The administrative order (Exodus 18) was also established and differed from the Aaronic law by incorporating judges, lawyers, doctors, tax collectors and men in similar capacities who were not set apart for service in the Temple but were placed in an administrative capacity in charge of the affairs of God’s kingdom. These men were to fear God, be trustworthy & hate dishonest gain, for they will be officials over thousands, hundreds, fifties and tens.
Like the Israelites of old, many of our Israelite brothers and sisters have not learned the following in today’s time: My people are destroyed for want of knowledge— Because you have rejected knowledge, I will reject you from being my priest. Since you have forgotten the law of your God, I likewise will forget your children.
Fellow Christians, we must be fed with the spiritual manna and the living water daily and our priests either from the pulpit or holding administrative positions have failed. I will not say all, but what we have expected and what we have received are two different stories.
So many in today’s society are looking, searching, combing, scouring and seeking that which is right and true. So many are looking for a visible sign and have no trust in faith.
What many of our priests have forgotten is to preach the gospel and utilize as a foundation II Chronicles 7:14 (NIV) If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.
Fellow Christians, love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul and mind by following his commandments, statutes and judgments so you can be an example as one who followed instead of forgetting the law of God.
Be an example and not just a face in the crowd.
May God bless you always in all that you say and do.