The Lord and Israel are major characters in the Book of Hosea, but the drama of their relationship is acted out in the persons of Hosea and his unfaithful wife, Gomer. She bore him three children: two sons and a daughter. Hosea gave the children symbolic names that illustrated God’s attitude toward Israel’s present and future: Jezreel (“God sows” punishment), Lo-Ruhamah (“No Mercy”), and Lo-Ammi (“Not My People”). Read on to see what The Lutheran Bible Companion says about Hosea.
When I work with couples in premarital counseling, there is a point at which we discuss leaving and cleaving, based on the creation account. “Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh” (Genesis 2:24). I stress the importance of establishing themselves as a separate family, apart from their families of origin. One question I ask is where they plan to spend their holidays, recognizing that both families will likely want them to spend the holidays with the respective sides. The point is to encourage newly married couples to make these decisions independently and as a team.
The Wise Men had to make a similar decision, although they arrived in Bethlehem some time after Jesus’ birth. We don’t know if these men were married. Because they were educated, they likely traveled with an entourage, which could have included spouses. Either way, they decided the trip was worth it.
Given the high status the Gospel of John gives to Jesus, it is not surprising that certain passages from this Gospel would play important roles when questions arose concerning Jesus’ precise relation to the one God of Israel. In an adapted excerpt from the second volume in the Concordia Commentary series on the Gospel of John, read about the classic interpretation to John 10:30.