Wednesday, May 29, 2013

The Child Named Not Loved

The Minor Prophets Speak to Today

The Child Named Not Loved

Gomer conceived again and gave birth to a daughter. 
Then the Lord said to Hosea, “Call her Lo-Ruhamah (which means “not loved”),
for I will no longer show love to Israel, that I should at all forgive them.
Yet I will show love to Judah; and I will save them—
not by bow, sword or battle, or by horses and horsemen,
but I, the Lord their God, will save them.”
Hosea 1:6-7

God's Unconditional Love



How incomprehensible! Naming a child Not Loved. 

Does this mean the child is not loved?

Maybe. But, it may mean the Father of the Child is not loved. The child was not conceived in love. Just because the father loves the woman does not mean the woman loves the father.


God says I will no longer show love to the people of Israel. I will no longer forgive them.

What is the warning, the lesson, here to those of us referred to in 1 Corinthians 10:11?

God's love is unconditional BUT-- 


1. His demonstrations of love are not!

God's loving actions. His exercise of his love. These are not without boundaries. TODAY WE MIGHT CALL THIS PASSAGE AN EXPRESSION OF TOUGH LOVE. True love is not all sweetness and sugar, kindness unlimited, support in all our actions, attitudes, beliefs, and moods regardless of what they are.

Love does not mean accepting promiscuity by the object of our love. The same is true of God's love. Unrelenting disobedience, continued disregard, prostitution of our lives -- these are not accepted forever. God's staying hand of mercy will be withdrawn. The consequences of our foolishness and/or rebellion will not always be held back. He will let them overwhelm us despite his love for us. For love that protects from all consequences is not love at all. You can't keep going back to put your hand in the fire without someday getting burned.

God's demonstrations of his love can and will be withheld!


2. His forgiveness, as a demonstration of love, is not unconditional!

It is always available. It is guaranteed for the repentant. (A normal christian life is lived in condition of repentance - a turning and going God's way.) But, it can and does get withheld from God's unrepentant children - those who turn and walk away from God, from the paths in which he leads.

As the author of Hebrews notes, as a father disciplines the son whom he loves, so our heavenly father disciplines us. Forgiveness of willful unrepentant actions, attitudes, beliefs, and moods ceases to be love when they have not yielded to demonstrations of love.

God's forgiveness (one of his demonstrations of love) is not unconditional.


1.   How does this speak of grace?

2.   Is grace above this warning?


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