Murfreesboro, TN – What are the three best things in your life right now? Did you just graduate from college… Was your first grandchild just born… Do you have awesome co workers… Is your boyfriend the best…?
Where do you find comfort? Having plenty of money in the bank… Having enough friends… Having a spouse… Escaping in a Netflix binge…?
What are you searching for? As long as I have ________________________ , everything will be okay.
However you answered those questions and however you filled in the blank, the truth is: That is not enough. That does not satisfy. The world will never be enough.
In the book of Hosea, God uses the story of a man named Hosea and his wife, Gomer, to paint a picture of this. Gomer has everything she could ever want in Hosea. She has a husband who cares and provides for her. She has a house to live in. Hosea has given her financial stability. She has children to raise. Perhaps the most important of all, she has security in knowing she is loved and will be provided for.
In what looks like an act of insanity to us, Gomer sells herself into prostitution. This woman, who already has every thing she could ever ask for, decides that it’s not enough. Her husband has been faithful to love and provide for her, yet she goes looking for something more, something better. She is unfaithful and rebellious. She gives herself to men, as if to say, “Maybe this will finally satisfy. Maybe this will bring me more comfort. Maybe this will bring me my own money and happiness. Maybe this will make me feel loved.”
It seems absurd to us that she would leave her upright and loving husband to give herself to other men, but what’s even crazier is what happens next. God tell Hosea to go find Gomer and to buy her back.
God. Tells. Hosea. To. Go. Buy. His. Own. Unfaithful. Wife. Back.
So Hosea does just that. He walks into the dark and dirty place where Gomer is on a pedestal, perhaps naked and in chains, waiting to be purchased. Hosea, with grace and patience in his eyes says, “That’s my wife.” To which the reply from the man might have been, “I don’t care who she is, this is her price.” And Hosea, without skipping a beat, lovingly pays the price to purchase his wife back. He buys back what is already his.
It’s a great story, but it becomes tangible when we realize the analogy.
WE ARE GOMER.
We leave our loving Husband. We leave the One who created us. We run from the One who knows us deeply. We rebel against the One who lavishes grace on us. We hide from the One who gives good gifts. We leave the One who provides for our deepest needs. We leave Him and prostitute ourselves to the world. We try to fill ourselves up on the things the world can give us: friendships, relationships, success, a sense of security, and a sense of comfort. “Maybe this will finally satisfy. Maybe this will bring me more comfort. Maybe this will bring me my own money and happiness. Maybe this will make me feel loved.” We are Gomer. We prostitute ourselves to the world.
GOD IS HOSEA.
God already owns us. We are his. We are made in his image. He created us, and He desires to have an intimate relationship with us. He wants to fully satisfy our every desire. We run and sell ourselves to the world, and He buys us back. We are the unfaithful wife.
We are the wife who already has everything we could ever need, yet we run and sell ourselves to the world. Sin makes us its slaves. Sin leaves us naked and in chains on that very same pedestal as Gomer. But God comes in and says with grace and patience in His eyes, “That’s my child.”
What was the price for God to buy His children back? What was the price for God to buy you back? The blood of Jesus Christ was the price. On the cross, the price was paid, and God lovingly and graciously bought his unfaithful children back. He buys back what is already his.
He is so patient with us every time we run. Satan, even from the beginning of time, deceives us into believing that the world will give us everything we want, everything we’ve been searching for.
But in the things of the world, we are always left empty. The world is fleeting. Nothing of the world will satisfy. Though our rebellion may bring temporary satisfaction or pleasure, the feeling will not last. God alone satisfies. He is so much greater than any fleeting comfort the world offers.
God has paid the price to buy you back from the things you are vainly searching for satisfaction in. He alone satisfies more deeply and eternally. In His presence is fullness of joy, and at His right hand are pleasures forevermore!