1. When Israel was told not to rejoice, what days had come upon them?
The days of visitation: “(1) Rejoice not, O Israel, for joy, as other people: for thou hast gone a whoring from thy God, thou hast loved a reward upon every cornfloor. (2) The floor and the winepress shall not feed them, and the new wine shall fail in her. (3) They shall not dwell in the LORD'S land; but Ephraim shall return to Egypt, and they shall eat unclean things in Assyria. (4) They shall not offer wine offerings to the LORD, neither shall they be pleasing unto him: their sacrifices shall be unto them as the bread of mourners; all that eat thereof shall be polluted: for their bread for their soul shall not come into the house of the LORD. (5) What will ye do in the solemn day, and in the day of the feast of the LORD? (6) For, lo, they are gone because of destruction: Egypt shall gather them up, Memphis shall bury them: the pleasant places for their silver, nettles shall possess them: thorns shall be in their tabernacles. (7) The days of visitation are come, the days of recompence are come; Israel shall know it: the prophet is a fool, the spiritual man is mad, for the multitude of thine iniquity, and the great hatred” (Hosea 9:1-7).
- Those in sin ought to abhor, hate themselves (Job 42:1-6, Ezekiel 20:43, Ezekiel 36:31, and James 4:6-10). They should not rejoice (Amos 6:1-6). That joy will come to pass (Zephaniah 3:11 and Luke 6:25).
- The repeated theme of this book. They were spiritual whores (Ezekiel 6:9).
- God sends that which brings forth our fruit (Acts 14:17). He was going to hold that from them (Amos 4:6-9).
- As this chapter concludes, they are going to be cast out (Hosea 9:17). They are not welcomed any more in the land the Lord gave them (Deuteronomy 4:23-27).
- God didn’t want their offerings (Proverbs 15:8 and Jeremiah 6:20). He doesn’t have this relationship with sinners (Proverbs 28:9 and John 9:31).
- “What will ye do” was a question for Israel? The time they should have been coming before God, He doesn’t want it from them. They should have understood that was a time to lament (Joel 1:13).
- God was going to visit and bring recompense for the multitude of their sins (Deuteronomy 32:35, Isaiah 66:6, and Hebrews 2:1-2).
- The foolish prophet and spiritual man insane (Jeremiah 6:13-14).
2. What was the prophet in all his ways?
“The watchman of Ephraim was with my God: but the prophet is a snare of a fowler in all his ways, and hatred in the house of his God” (Hosea 9:8).
- The watchman of Ephraim (Jeremiah 6:17 and Jeremiah 31:6).
- The snare of a fowler [bait layer] (Jeremiah 5:26).
- The prophet (Jeremiah 6:13-16 and Lamentations 2:14).
- Hatred in the house of God (Jeremiah 23:11).
3. What word did Hosea use to describe their corrupting of themselves?
He used the word “deeply”: “They have deeply corrupted themselves, as in the days of Gibeah: therefore he will remember their iniquity, he will visit their sins” (Hosea 9:9).
- “Deeply” (Isaiah 29:15 and Isaiah 31:6).
- They had corrupted themselves (Zephaniah 3:7). This was long a historical problem (Judges 2:11-19). It continued to be too (James 5:1-6).
4. Was Israel in the same state as when the Lord had initially found them?
No, they were like firstripe grapes. Now, they are shamefully a people of abominations: “I found Israel like grapes in the wilderness; I saw your fathers as the firstripe in the fig tree at her first time: but they went to Baalpeor, and separated themselves unto that shame; and their abominations were according as they loved” (Hosea 9:10).
- Isaiah 5:1-25
5. Were the descendants of Ephraim in store for a better future?
No: “(11) As for Ephraim, their glory shall fly away like a bird, from the birth, and from the womb, and from the conception. (12) Though they bring up their children, yet will I bereave them, that there shall not be a man left: yea, woe also to them when I depart from them! (13) Ephraim, as I saw Tyrus, is planted in a pleasant place: but Ephraim shall bring forth his children to the murderer” (Hosea 9:11-13).
- As we’ve talked about, their goodness was brief (Hosea 6:4).
- As a result, that which they gloried in was going to be brief too. The fruit of their bodies was going to perish as God long ago warned (Deuteronomy 5:9 and Deuteronomy 28:18) and will carry out (Lamentations 2:11-12, and Malachi 2:1-3).
6. What did Hosea ask the Lord to give them?
A miscarrying womb and dry breasts: “Give them, O LORD: what wilt thou give? give them a miscarrying womb and dry breasts” (Hosea 9:14).
- At the first, this seems like a cruel requests. However, if the future generations were facing what they were going to face, could this be a plea of mercy? Would it have been better if some had not been born (Matthew 26:24)?
- Even for Judah, their children were not going to be blessed going forward, but rather were going to be brought into bondage (Jeremiah 13:17).
- Like when Jerusalem was going to be destroyed in AD 70, Jesus said woe to them that are with child (Luke 21:23).
7. When the Lord considered the wickedness in Gilgal, how did He feel about them?
He hated them: “All their wickedness is in Gilgal: for there I hated them: for the wickedness of their doings I will drive them out of mine house, I will love them no more: all their princes are revolters” (Hosea 9:15).
- Gilgal, the name of three places in Palestine (Strong’s # 1537).
- Wickedness there (Hosea 12:11).
- The future (Amos 5:5).
- God did not love them any more. God hated them (Psalms 5:4-5, Psalms 10:3, Psalms 11:5-7, Psalms 31:6, Proverb 6:16-19, Proverbs 16:5, and Hebrews 1:8-9).
8. Was Ephraim going to bring forth fruit?
No: “Ephraim is smitten, their root is dried up, they shall bear no fruit: yea, though they bring forth, yet will I slay even the beloved fruit of their womb” (Hosea 9:16).
- Dried up root (Isaiah 40:24 and Matthew 15:13).
- God’s promise to their forefathers was multiplication of their seed (Genesis 22:17, Genesis 26:1-5, and Exodus 32:13).
- No fruit makes a tree of false hope (Jude 1:12).
- Think about what this means in a spiritual manner (Luke 13:1-9).
9. Why was God going to cast away Ephraim?
Because they did not hearken unto Him: “My God will cast them away, because they did not hearken unto him: and they shall be wanderers among the nations” (Hosea 9:17).
- Cast them away (II Chronicles 7:19-22).
- God tried (Jeremiah 25:3-4 and Zechariah 1:4).
- The combination of these points (Jeremiah 7:12-15).
© 2020 This study was prepared for a Bible class with the Sunrise Acres church of Christ in El Paso, TX by Brian A. Yeager.