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Saturday, December 8, 2012

A Homer for Gomer

When I think of the name Gomer, I admit I smile. I think of Gomer Pyle, and my mind goes off to other people with funny names.

The biblical Gomer was the name of a loose woman, a prostitute. God asked his prophet Hosea to take her as his wife, be faithful to her, and to love her. Their marriage was to serve as an object lesson, illustrating God’s unconditional love for Israel, a nation that had committed great whoredom, departing from the LORD (from Hosea 1:2).

The dowry Hosea paid for Gomer was 15 pieces of silver and one and a half homers of barley. She was cheaply priced, because she was, frankly, cheap. (The typical dowry price for a virgin was 50 shekels of silver.)

I’m sure you can imagine the shock, surprise, and the whispers and gossip around God’s prophet Hosea, when he took Gomer as his wife. There was a buzz, and it wasn’t nice at all.

Look at this beautiful picture of Christ’s love for us. We never did anything to deserve the kind of love He gave us. If He had only come and made Himself flesh for us, it would have been amazing enough. But, He lived among us. He suffered temptation alongside us. He lived for us, ministered to us, healed our sicknesses, preached righteousness and repentance, and best of all, He gave Himself for us, because we were sinners!

What love! Just as Hosea the prophet gave himself, a pure prophet, to a soiled woman, God did the same thing—only greater. He died for us, and He lives for us.

For Christ also hath once suffered for sins,
the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God,
being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit (1 Peter 3.18).

During this Christmas season, let’s appreciate anew His Great Gift,
the Lord Jesus Christ.

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