Sometimes the Lord lays a message on my heart in odd ways. With this one, it came through a friend who felt prompted to share Hosea 10:1-4 with me.
The New International Version reads: 1 Israel was a spreading vine; he brought forth fruit for himself. As his fruit increased, he built more altars; as his land prospered, he adorned his sacred stones.
2 Their heart is deceitful, and now they must bear their guilt. The Lord will demolish their altars and destroy their sacred stones.
3 Then they will say, “We have no king because we did not revere the Lord. But even if we had a king, what could he do for us?”
4 They make many promises, take false oaths and make agreements; therefore lawsuits spring up like poisonous weeds in a plowed field.”
It’s hard for me to read this and not come away thinking of the United States of America. Though the text says “Israel,” it can easily be replaced with “U.S.,” and that makes it all the more frightening.
Like a vine, the U.S. has steadily grown in its greatness. However, because of our greatness, we’ve also grown arrogant, thinking we are both our creator and the created, that our success has been our own doing, eliminating God from the equation of “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”
“Altars,” and “sacred stones?” Simply put, those are the things we worship, that we have placed ahead of God in our daily lives and the lack of acknowledgement we give Him by continually ignore His promptings because we think life is good and we don’t need Him.
Then there’s the word “king,” which is not capitalized and can easily be changed to “leaders.” So it becomes easy to understand the parallel question, “But even if we had leaders, what could they do for us?”
That answer is simple — nothing. Our lives come from God, not man, no matter how powerful or affluent that person is.
Finally, we are left with the “many promises,” the “false oaths,” and “agreements” that bring “lawsuits.” This is where we stand today and it is only a matter of time before we will have to “bear…guilt.”
We were once a “plowed field,” formed over 225-years ago in a Godly way, that’s being choked by “poisonous weeds,” by Godless leaders that we commanded into position.