Israel’s Adultery Forgiven

Open Your Bible

Hosea 2:14-23, Hosea 3:1-6, Jeremiah 3:12-13, Romans 5:6-8

I love being on the right side of an argument. 

Being “righteously right” is more satisfying to me than a dark chocolate-covered pretzel (and those are pretty good). Sure, I’ll forgive you—just as long as you know I’m the one administering the mercy, and you’re the one admitting your shortcomings. It’s restoration on my terms and with my limits. You’re welcome.

Not super attractive. Not to my kids, not to my husband, not to the people I work with, and not to the One seated on the mercy seat. 

But mercy isn’t about our righteousness. We don’t grant mercy because we are more and someone else is less. We grant mercy because we have been granted mercy. Period. We watch God, in His Word and in our own lives, act in mercy toward us every day. He requires us to repent, but He doesn’t make us grovel. He invites you and me, just like He invited Israel, to return from how very wrong we are. He makes us righteous because of the righteous One who died in our place. Because we have been shown true mercy, we can begin to show the same.

Do you see the way God demonstrates mercy to His people in today’s reading? Israel is wronger than wrong—deeply unfaithful and offensive—and God makes plans to allure His unfaithful bride with tenderness. And my favorite: He promises to make the Valley of Achor into “a gateway of hope” (Hosea 2:15). 

God makes it easy for us to come home too. He laid out the welcome mat for unfaithful Israel in spite of their wandering and unwillingness to return His faithfulness. God’s unrelenting love was just that—it never stopped inviting. And it never stops inviting and pursuing us today. Not only does God’s faithful love save us, it also teaches us. It shows us how to show mercy—how to be unrelenting in our tenderness, offering gateways of hope because the same has been done for us. 

As we read the book of Hosea, we learn no one is beyond the reach of God’s forgiveness. No one is too wrong to receive mercy. God may bring judgment and consequence for our sins, but His ultimate aim is restoration, as demonstrated even in the way He renamed Hosea’s children. 

He calls us His people too. He calls you His person. His Word teaches us—from Eden’s fig leaves to Hosea’s family to the very line of David—that God is in the eternal business of turning condemnation into restoration. This restoration is for us to receive and for us to offer to others. Being righteously right won’t get us anywhere, but joining the Father in His business of restoration is work worth doing well. Receive His invitation today, friend. Receive His mercy. 

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107 thoughts on "Israel’s Adultery Forgiven"

  1. Heather Noble says:

    I loved the verse where God says “I will not be angry forever”.

  2. Heather Schmudlach says:

    Thank you Jesus. Thank you

  3. Heidi Mailand says:

    Amen Katie. I struggle with the same, and so does my eldest. Sometimes we can be ruthless in our thoughts toward ourselves!

  4. Heidi Mailand says:

    This is a good teaching about how to show mercy to others. Walking through a situation with someone now, it’s a good reminder I’m not the ‘sinless’ one.

  5. Patrice Robinson says:

    I do not have to be righteously right I just have to extend the same mercy to others that is waiting on me each morning

  6. Rachael Leatherman says:

    From a fellow “perfectionist,” your words spoke right to my heart. Thank you for sharing this.

  7. Lynda Pontious says:

    I love how He loves me and shows me mercy, even in my sin, I repent so I may experience the full glory of God.

  8. Abby May says:

    ❤️ So good! hope you guys are having a joy-filled day:)