God Has Not Changed
Open Your Bible
Hosea 7:3-16, Galatians 6:6-10, Romans 9:22-24
Text: Hosea 7:3-16, Galatians 6:6-10, Romans 9:22-24
“Ephraim has allowed himself to get mixed up with the nations. Ephraim is unturned bread baked on a griddle. Foreigners consume his strength, but he does not notice. Even his hair is streaked with gray, but he does not notice. Israel’s arrogance testifies against them, yet they do not return to the Lᴏʀᴅ their God, and for all this, they do not seek him” (Hosea 7:8-10).
Have you noticed something here?
Ephraim (the largest of the ten northern tribes, whose name is sometimes used to refer to Israel as a whole) has become an out-of-control, hot mess. Meanwhile, the people of Israel are so crazed with self-indulgence they can hardly tell what day it is. But I can’t help standing back a bit and noticing, in all of Israel’s wayward mindlessness as they run to Egypt and Assyria and every which way, God hasn’t changed.
Oh, He’s definitely watching. He sees them spiraling out of control, tossing their reputation out the window. He hears the other nations all whispering to each other about “God’s Chosen People” killing off their leaders, one by one, and getting fresh starts from their God, only to get all muddy again (Hosea 7:16).
Israel is two-faced and double-tongued.
But if we turn our attention from the squeaky wheel for a moment—if we tune out all the noise—we’ll notice this: God has not changed.
He has but one face and one tongue. One unrelenting love for His bride.
We want this passage to be about the rogue bride, or the prodigal son, and how Israel can’t seem to get it right. But it isn’t. It’s about God.
God’s character never changes. His one face is righteousness. His one Word is holiness. His one undying call to His people is love.
As the ever-faithful Groom, God remains. Even as His anger burns over the unfaithfulness of His bride, He forgives her. He provides for her. He gives her a fresh start. And in His severe mercy, He even withholds good things from her so that she might return to Him. While Israel hedges its bets on other gods, the Groom has all His focus on His one, true love.
Maybe you don’t need me to spell it out for you today, but in case you do, hear this: you are His one, true love. Wherever you are, whatever you’ve done, whatever anyone else thinks of you, and however long it’s been since the last time you called Him your Groom—He hasn’t changed, and neither has His love for you.
“But God proves his own love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us!”