Hosea 4:10-19 A horror movie in slow motion
10 “They will eat but not have enough; they will engage in prostitution but not flourish, because they have deserted the Lord to give themselves 11 to prostitution; old wine and new wine take away their understanding.
That is the sick reality of sin, "You can check out any time you like but you can never leave". You cannot leave a criminal organization,. They don't understand they have been hooked like fish on the line, they can't escape and soon they will be someone's dinner.
12 My people consult a wooden idol, and a diviner’s rod speaks to them. A spirit of prostitution leads them astray; they are unfaithful to their God.
Superstitious gibberish. Consulting a block of wood or watching a stick fall to the ground to interpret what the spirits are saying to you.
13 They sacrifice on the mountaintops and burn offerings on the hills, under oak, poplar and terebinth, where the shade is pleasant. Therefore your daughters turn to prostitution and your daughters-in-law to adultery. 14 “I will not punish your daughters when they turn to prostitution, nor your daughters-in-law when they commit adultery, because the men themselves consort with harlots and sacrifice with shrine prostitutes— a people without understanding will come to ruin!
The children learn from the adults. There is no punishment for fornication or adultery today because these situations generally involve a lot more than what you see on the surface. The women may have been abused for years. A shrine prostitute is simply a Hollywood actor. To pay money for a Hollywood movie is to sacrifice with shrine prostitutes.
15 “Though you, Israel, commit adultery, do not let Judah become guilty. “Do not go to Gilgal; do not go up to Beth Aven. And do not swear, ‘As surely as the Lord lives!’
This is the situation today, we need to maintain a clear line of demarcation between what is happening in the street and what is happening in the church. There are laws being passed around the world making it illegal to preach the gospel or to convict people of sin. Christian churches in China must put a portrait of Xi up in the sanctuary. They are crossing a red line for the Lord.
16 The Israelites are stubborn, like a stubborn heifer. How then can the Lord pasture them like lambs in a meadow? 17 Ephraim is joined to idols; leave him alone! 18 Even when their drinks are gone, they continue their prostitution; their rulers dearly love shameful ways. 19 A whirlwind will sweep them away, and their sacrifices will bring them shame.
So I will destroy your mother. The picture Hosea paints of our society is that of a horror movie more terrifying than any Stephen King book. These mothers are living in a society where there is no faithfulness. Their husband wasn’t faithful, their boyfriend wasn’t faithful, and now they are a single mother. This is a society without love. This woman has to raise a bunch of kids without any help. These kids are like little guppies being thrown into a pool with sharks every day. The movies Boyz in the Hood and Gran Torino depict a world in which gangs prowl like a pack of wolves trying to get young boys into their gang. They murder and they rape with impunity. In each movie they show how the only way to rescue these boys is with a very strong father, without that the boy really has no chance. So these mothers watch their kids grow up, day by day, knowing this, seeing it play out day by day. Their life is like the tense scene in a horror movie where you know something is about to happen. The root of the problem is faithfulness, love and acknowledging God. What are the chances that this will happen in our society today? It is nil. In the UK they want to make it illegal to preach the gospel on the street and they have arrested people for praying silently. In Canada they want it to be illegal to put a Bible verse up on a billboard. It is far worse in China, India, or Saudi Arabia. So there is a distinction. In the church the focus is on faithfulness, love and the worship of God. Yet this chapter ridicules priests and prophets. So you have to see the difference between “Israel” and “Judah”. Israel means prince of God. There are churches where the princes and rulers attend. These priests are used to wash their image much the same way as the cartels have people who wash their money. The rich, the wealthy, the powerful go there and when they need to improve their image they will give a million dollars to the church, they will show up at fundraisers, they will do what is necessary. They treat these churches like the public relations wing for their private life. Judah means praise. There are other churches that are composed of the poor, the outcasts and the offscouring of the world. There are not many wise, or rich or powerful among them. But they are known for their praise of the Lord. They are known for their worship of the Lord. You can still have a single mother with a bunch of kids go there but the pastor will take that role of strong father figure. If their kids get in trouble you call the church. If you need to keep them off the streets you put them in the choir. You can live the real life horror story that is the US or you can live a life of praise and worship which is “Judah”. I have seen this story repeated on the internet but for some reason they always think it is the “black mother’s nightmare”. That is baloney. It is the hispanic mother’s nightmare too. Gran Torino was about an asian gang, it is the asian mother’s nightmare as well. Of course that ignores Sandy Hook, Columbine, and the opioid crisis. It is the suburban mother’s nightmare too. Nothing illustrates how unfaithful and unloving our government is than our situation with guns. I lived in a small city in West Texas. I knew people who got a gun as a teenager and held onto that gun for 50 years. They would hunt pheasant, deer, geese, ducks, etc. They didn’t need cable TV, they had an enjoyable hobby that provided a lot of food for their family over the course of fifty years. It was a father and son activity. It was something they had done in their family from one generation to another. I do not see any reason why gang violence in LA, or tragedies in Sandy Hook should require them to give up their guns. The solution is very simple if you had love and faithfulness. First, you would digitize all our gun records so that any time there is a shooting the police could determine whose gun was involved in the very first day. We have the technology to do this, we don’t do it because it is seen as the first step towards the government confiscating guns. It has been ruled that the government should not be allowed to keep this computerized record of every gun in the country. Therefore, the second critical step is to require every gun owner to have liability insurance just like we do with a car. If you have had a gun for 50 years without incidence the cost of this insurance would be negligible. But now you are protected if your son plays with your gun and someone gets shot. If you have your guns locked in a cabinet your cost for insurance would be even lower. But what happens is that the insurance companies keep the digital record. Now when a shooting takes place the police send a request to every insurance company with the digital footprint of the gun, they run it through their computers and come back with the person who owns this gun. But wait, no criminal is going to buy this insurance and even if they wanted to, no insurance company would sell it to them. “Young man with two felonies for armed robbery and possession with intent to distribute wants to buy an AR-15 and needs insurance.” No way, no insurance company wants to be on the hook for the damage this guy can do. So now when the cops find a gun on someone you have two violations: possession of an unlicensed gun and no insurance. But, that gun had to be insured before it leaves the factory. First it is insured by the retail outlet and then it is insured by the buyer. What gangs do is get a guy without any criminal record to act as their go between. He buys two dozen rifles then drives back to the gang and they pay him for them. But no insurance company is going to be on the hook for this guy buying two dozen assault rifles. Once we can start tracing these guns we’ll find out the stores that are selling to this person and who this person is. This allows the police to shut them both down. The solution is simple, why don’t they do it? Because criminals buy a lot of guns! It is very profitable for gun dealers, much more so than the guy who buys one rifle and holds onto it for 50 years. After a criminal commits a crime with a gun they toss it in the river and buy another one. They know that if they are caught with that gun they’ll be convicted of the crime. This mother lives in a world where the person she voted for has cut a deal with the gun dealer so that the gun dealer can get rich and the politician can get powerful, and she can live the nightmare. What is the nightmare? Perhaps her husband was shot and killed, or maybe he died while the police were kneeling on his neck. Maybe her son is shot seven times in the back while being apprehended by the police. Maybe he is shot right in front of her grandchildren. She knew this was going to happen and her life was like watching the nightmare in slow motion.