Read His Words Before Ours!
2 Corinthians 5:16-6:2
Wife of Whoredom.
I am Gomer.
These, these names are my identity.
I will never be anything but, these.
I am enslaved to my lusts.
No matter how much I take in, no matter how much I pursue it, it’s never enough.
I have no satisfaction, but I cannot make a different choice.
Sometimes I look around and wish for something deeper, more lasting; something trustworthy. But I can’t do it. I’ve tried. I’ve been pursued, but I find I cannot chase back. I’m powerless.
Gomer. My name means completeness, fullness, a coming to the end, usually suddenly or with quick termination. Think of it like a cup that is so full, you can see the water cohesively forming a slight bubble just above the rim of the cup. One drop more and the cup would not contain the liquid. The cup is completely full and the water must stop immediately.
I don’t remember a life different than the one I have now. Whatever memories I have are faded, like sketches of a dream leaving me wondering if different than now was ever anything more than a mirage. I see other women, women with children, women with husbands. True, some of those husbands I’ve seen on my street corner. But still, those women have husbands…families.
Perhaps years ago, my heart would have trembled, crying out for mercy, wishing for what I do not have.
But I know I’m not worthy.
But then there is Hosea.
Foolish man, pursuing me when I have nothing to offer him.
He is respected, has earned a fine reputation.
He’s a prophet of Yahweh!
Yet, he chose me as his bride?!
I simply cannot fathom it.
Surely, there’s an ulterior motive.
More ridiculous, he has given me children.
But I know I’m not worthy.
I simply cannot accept this generosity.
No, I will not accept it.
All I have is shame.
I will run.
I will forever play the harlot.
No one can love me like a husband, not Hosea, not Yahweh.
These empty identities, they are all I have.
My name is Gomer, I am full.
Full of brokenness and shame.
This was Gomer: full.
This was Israel: full.
Both were full of adultery.
And the Lord was calling them into immediate obedience or suffer the consequences. The Lord’s patience was at maximum capacity for their wickedness.
The Lord had watched the Northern Kingdom of Israel walk steadily away from His decrees, farther and farther into their own sin, and it broke His heart.
He had called out, prophet after prophet, “Return, return, return!”
But Israel refused time, after time, after time.
Israel chased other gods, chased their own passions, lusted after others, and broke covenant with the Lord their God in ever intensifying grotesque acts of adultery.
And so, one last time, the Lord God gave Israel a living picture, one they couldn’t possibly deny the reality of. He told Hosea, His prophet, to do the unthinkable and marry Gomer the prostitute while living openly among His people.
Hosea would take her as his own and would love her deeply.
But she would run.
She would break his heart.
She would refuse to be healed from her whoredom.
The unthinkable would become the undeniable as Hosea and Gomer lived out the re-enactment of Israel’s own whoredom.
This is how I love you, O Israel!
This is how I love you, O Beloved (YOU!)!
Gomer chose to run, despite Hosea’s dramatic, intentional, pursuant love.
She held on to her empty identities and simply refused to believe that sacrificial love could truly exist for her.
In the same way, Israel, the Northern Kingdom, also refused to exchange her identity.
Israel could not, would not, believe that God’s love for her was better than any she could find on her own. Israel’s story ends here, she chose whoredom, and as a result, the consequences of her rebellion were meted out by the iron fist of the Assyrian Empire.
Israel was destroyed.
She chose to be her own savior and lost everything.
Don’t miss this message, Sisters!
Your Savior is calling you with the same pursuant love.
Shame does not have to be your name.
Regret does not have to be the skin you wear.
Unworthy does not have to be the cloak you cover yourself with.
Nothing to offer the God of the Universe? Exactly!
Nothing we do could amount to anything, just like Gomer.
She was powerless to earn Hosea’s love.
And we can hope for nothing more before the Holy God.
Which is why He did the work for us!
Jesus Christ came to live the perfect live we never could
and pay the penalty for sin in our place.
Our new identity.
There is a Savior.
There is real love.
There is hope for a new identity.
One that begins and ends with the life of Jesus Christ as He offers Himself for you.
Just like Israel, just like Gomer, we each have a choice to make.
Stop running, girl.
Drop your empty identities and be made new!
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Embracing God’s fullness in our lives is rooted in scripture and memorizing His word is vital to our continued growth and depth with Jesus. Tap and hold from your mobile device to download this week’s verse and make it your phone’s lockscreen!
Thanks for joining us today as we journeyed into Bride Week One! Don’t miss out on the discussion below – we’d love to hear your thoughts!