Seek help from foes (chap. 7); golden calves (chap. 8). Reap what you sow (8:2-7). Lord's love (chap. 11); Anger (chap. 13). Sacrifice/praise (chap. 14).
And they consider not in their hearts that I remember all their wickedness: now their own doings have beset them about; they are before My face (Hos. 7:2).
Our Lord knows our ways. He created us. Every little detail of who we are was planned out by Him. A dimple in a chin, a fiery little temper that causes the stomping of a five year old's foot, a sweet smile that resembles their mother's, all are examples of how God carefully and wonderfully made all the pieces that make up who we are. We may not understand why we were born with some traits or afflictions, but our Creator knows why.
Everything is for a purpose. We are made in God's image and are born to live for Him and His purpose. Once we are here though, it has to be our choice to do so. We would be mindless robots if God had not given us the gift of free will. He gives us the freedom to choose either His path or our own. Oftentimes, we turn to Him once we realize that our own path has become destructive and lacking. We may search trying to fill that void in our life, not realizing that what we are lacking is Jesus. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them (Eph. 2:10).
God knows our hearts, and our hearts are filled with wickedness. It is our choice whether we embrace the wickedness or turn to Him for His cleansing power. He will allow us to fall into our own pits and turn completely from Him. He will listen as we deny His existence and yet still reach out His hand in His mercy the moment we turn our eyes toward Him and acknowledge He is God. His marvelous grace knows no bounds.
Often we place one sin higher than another. Pride, murder, jealousy, greed, deceit, they all lead to a bitter end. God sees our sin and knows what it will develop into if it goes unchecked. He knows our every thought. He knows what lies unsaid in our hearts, eating away at our very soul. He sees every fleeting thought, both the ones acted on, and the ones not acted on. Even so, His hand of mercy reaches down waiting for us to reach back.
God does not put one of us higher than the other. We all have the same opportunity to accept God's grace. How surprised we may be if we reach heaven and see a murderer that has been changed by the grace of Jesus, but we do not see an elder from our own church or a neighbor who was always willing to lend a helping hand. Salvation is not about what we do; it is about what Jesus did for us and how we accept it. Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; Which He shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour (Titus 3:5-6).
When we repent and accept Jesus as our Savior, the Holy Spirit comes into our hearts to lead us and guide us. Even after this occurs, we may still choose to sin. This grieves the Holy Spirit within us, who then urges us to turn from our sin and back to God's plan for our lives.
What fruit had ye then in those things whereof ye are now ashamed? for the end of those things is death. But now being made free from sin, and become servants to God, ye have your fruit unto holiness, and the end everlasting life (Rom. 6:21-22).
Thought for Today:
God says He will forgive our sins but only if we forgive those who sin against us.
In the son who was called out of Egypt (Hos. 11:1). This prophecy is twofold: one is a historical reference pertaining to Israel (Ex. 4:22-23); and the other is prophetic, looking to the sojourn of Christ as a child in Egypt (Matt. 2:14-15).
9:1 hast gone a whoring, have committed spiritual adultery and idolatry, were unfaithful to God (Israel was regarded as the wife of Jehovah. Isaiah 54:5; 62:4-5); cornfloor, threshing floor; 10:5 calves, golden calf idols; 10:11 to ride, to put in harness; 11:12 yet ruleth with God, is still considered faithful to God.
Pray for Country: Trinidad and Tobago (1 million) two islands seven miles off the coast of Venezuela • Major languages: English and Hindi • Religious freedom • 34% Protestant; 29% Roman Catholic; 25% Hindu; 7% Muslim • Prayer Suggestion: Know that God answers prayer (Ps. 118:5).
Memory Verse for the Week: Psalms 145:10