1. What was the finding of an adulteress woman as a wife likened to in this chapter?
The Lord’s relationship with Israel: “Then said the LORD unto me, Go yet, love a woman beloved of her friend, yet an adulteress, according to the love of the LORD toward the children of Israel, who look to other gods, and love flagons of wine” (Hosea 3:1).
- This takes us backwards (Hosea 1:2-3).
- This instruction though includes a greater detail. Hosea is told to “love” this adulteress. The word “love” is the same Hebrew word as “beloved” in this verse (Strong’s # 0157). Therefore, this is a woman sexually involved with another already. This is the type of woman that was to be avoided by God’s children (Proverbs 5:1-10, Proverbs 6:20-35, Proverbs 7:4-27, Proverbs 23:27, and Proverbs 30:20).
- Had Israel been following the Law of Moses properly, such a woman would not have existed (Leviticus 20:10 and Deuteronomy 23:17).
- The point is, the children of Israel are putting God in the same place Hosea is being put in as Israel is acting as an adulterous woman (II Chronicles 21:9-13, Isaiah 1:21, Jeremiah 2:20-3:25, Ezekiel 16:1-63, Ezekiel 23:1-49, and Hosea 4:12).
- They are sinfully looking to other gods (Exodus 20:1-5; Exodus 23:13, Deuteronomy 7:1-11, Deuteronomy 11:16, I Kings 14:7-9, II Chronicles 34:22-28, Jeremiah 1:16, and Jeremiah 22:1-9).
- What sense did it make to create something with your own hands and then call it god (Psalms 115:1-8)?
- They loved flagons of wine. Flagons means “something closely pressed together, i.e. a cake of raisins or other comfit” and the word translated wine here is translated “grapes” (Strong’s # 809) every other time it is used in the Old Testament (Strong’s # 6025). When we read of “flagons” it does not normally mean alcohol (i.e. I Chronicles 16:1-3). Now, we will latter read they had been taken away by alcohol (Hosea 4:11), but this phrase just doesn’t mean that. What this could mean, and likely does, is that they were giving their gods raisin cakes (Jeremiah 7:18; 44:19).
2. What did Hosea’s wife cost him?
“So I bought her to me for fifteen pieces of silver, and for an homer of barley, and an half homer of barley” (Hosea 3:2).
- A dowry [purchase price for wife, wedding money] was paid (cf. Exodus 22:16-17 and I Samuel 18:22-25).
3. What did Hosea require of his wife?
“ And I said unto her, Thou shalt abide for me many days; thou shalt not play the harlot, and thou shalt not be for another man: so will I also be for thee” (Hosea 3:3).
- Simply put, he wanted her to be faithful to him as he would to her (Deuteronomy 5:18 and I Corinthians 6:18-7:5).
4. What was going to be lacking for many days in Israel?
“For the children of Israel shall abide many days without a king, and without a prince, and without a sacrifice, and without an image, and without an ephod, and without teraphim” (Hosea 3:4).
- Sin caused a breach in relationship between them and God (Isaiah 1:1-18 and Isaiah 59:1-3).
- No kings, no sacrifices, etc. (Lamentations 2:9, Hosea 10:1-3, Amos 8:10-14, etc.). Ephod’s were in the priest’s garments (Exodus 28:4-15). A Teraphim was an image [idol].
- Israel was going to be carried away (II Kings 17:7-23).
- Judah led into captivity (II Chronicles 36:1-21).
- That is not all though. This is pointing further than all of that as the next verse will clarify.
- Idolatry would eventually come to pass and that will point to a certain time period (Zechariah 13:1-9).
5. What was Israel’s future in the “latter days”?
They were going to return to the Lord: “Afterward shall the children of Israel return, and seek the LORD their God, and David their king; and shall fear the LORD and his goodness in the latter days” (Hosea 3:5).
- The “latter days” here prophetically refers to Christ and the kingdom (Daniel 2:28-45).
- David is long gone. So, who is this referring to (Jeremiah 33:14-16, Luke 1:31-32, and Acts 2:14-41)?
- At what time, in which it connects to the other contextual clues, did fear come (Acts 2:42; 5:1-11)?
© 2020 This study was prepared for a Bible class with the Sunrise Acres church of Christ in El Paso, TX by Brian A. Yeager.