Stubborn, Rebellious Cows
My Texas rancher friends know all about stubborn cows, the ones who refuse to go where you need them to go and kick when you least expect it. And they don’t keep them long. This kind of rebellion is rewarded with a quick trip to the auction barn, soon to provide a juicy sirloin for us at Outback.
As Hosea began to lay out the Lord’s case against Israel, he said they were like a stubborn cow, especially accusing the leaders of drunkenness and prostitution (4:17-19). He threatened that a tornado would blow them away. Now he returns to this reality as he begins to wind down his case against his people.
“All their wickedness is in Gilgal. Certainly, there I reject them. Because of the wickedness of their actions, I will drive them out of my house.
I will no longer love them; all their leaders are stubborn. Ephraim is struck down by blight, their root is dried up, they yield no fruit. Even if they bear children, I will slay their cherished offspring. My God will reject them because they did not obey him. They will be wanderers among the nations.” Hosea 9:15-17
When Joshua set up camp on the west side of the Jordan a little east of Jericho, Gilgal was Israel’s home base (Josh. 4:29). From there they conquered, and even the name that sounded like “roll” meant that this was the place where the Lord declared that he had rolled away the shame of being slaves in Egypt (Josh. 5:9). But now Hosea has to label Gilgal as a place where the people and their leaders engaged in idolatrous fertility rites (4:15). Like a recalcitrant heifer, they had become more stubborn and rebellious, so the Lord declares he will roll back his love and protection and take them to the slaughterhouse. The ravages of war will decimate their population. They will be exiled and become wanderers, like Cain, among the nations.
I need to realize that beginning well is not enough. I have to keep walking with the Lord and keep growing in my love for him. The worst thing I can be as a leader is stubborn, disobedient, and resistant to the Lord.
LORD, help me to be a man after your own heart like David, and not stubborn, foolish, and disobedient like Saul, Israel’s first king. Help me to remember how he ended (1 Samuel 31).
For more from Dave Wyrtzen please visit TruthEncounter.com!