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Discover the Arts! Each day a different image from the Literary, Performing, or Visual Arts representing a portion of Scripture
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2013 April 5

Gomer and the Three Children (15th Century)
Guiard des Moulins (15th Century)
Renaissance Style
Bibliotheque Nationale de France, Paris, France / Dessins Enluminures Bible
Image Source: Art Bible Net

     Explanation: In Hosea 1 the LORD told Hosea to take "a wife of whoredoms and children of whoredoms" (v. 2). Hosea took Gomer the daughter of Diblaim and had three children by her. The illumination above illustrates this; (the third child is in the womb). The first child was a boy. The LORD told Hosea to name him Jezreel. The name was symbolic of the vengeance the LORD was going to take upon the house of Jehu for his murders in the valley of Jezreel. The LORD named the second child, a girl, Loruhamah, meaning "No Mercy." This name indicated that the LORD would no longer have mercy on Israel (the Northern Kingdom). They were carried away and scattered among the nations by the Assyrians. Gomer had a third child, a boy, and the LORD called him Loammi, meaning "Not My People." Nevertheless, said the LORD, a time would come when Judah and Israel would be regathered, and they would experience mercy and would be called "sons of the living God" (v. 10).      Several elements in this first chapter, clustering around Gomer, are difficult to interpret. Was Gomer real or visionary? Was the marriage real or visionary? If Gomer is real, was she a prostitute before her marriage to Hosea, or only afterward? Was Diblaim Gomer's father or her mother? One key concern is the question of whether God would move one of his holy prophets to marry an unclean woman, defiled by prostitution. However, when one considers that God moved Hosea to redeem her and take her back after she was unfaithful to him, the defilement issue is not an impossible barrier at the beginning of the marriage. And it is by no means clear that Gomer was sexually loose before the marriage. Although she is called "a wife of whoredoms," this may refer to the general climate of spiritual whoredom which then prevailed in Israel and Judah, by which both Israel and Judah were collectively defiled. This may be why the children were called "children of whoredoms" even before they were conceived. Also, Gomer may be called "a wife of whoredoms," in prospect of what she would become after Hosea married her. Or it may be that Gomer was unfaithful early in the marriage, before the children were born, and that the children were by another man (or men).

Hosea 1

     1 The word of the LORD that came unto Hosea, the son of Beeri, in the days of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah, kings of Judah, and in the days of Jeroboam the son of Joash, king of Israel.
     2 The beginning of the word of the LORD by Hosea. And the LORD said to Hosea, Go, take unto thee a wife of whoredoms and children of whoredoms: for the land hath committed great whoredom, departing from the LORD. 3 So he went and took Gomer the daughter of Diblaim; which conceived, and bare him a son.
     4 And the LORD said unto him, Call his name Jezreel; for yet a little while, and I will avenge the blood of Jezreel upon the house of Jehu, and will cause to cease the kingdom of the house of Israel. 5 And it shall come to pass at that day, that I will break the bow of Israel in the valley of Jezreel.
     6 And she conceived again, and bare a daughter. And God said unto him, Call her name Loruhamah: for I will no more have mercy upon the house of Israel; but I will utterly take them away. 7 But I will have mercy upon the house of Judah, and will save them by the LORD their God, and will not save them by bow, nor by sword, nor by battle, by horses, nor by horsemen.
     8 Now when she had weaned Loruhamah, she conceived, and bare a son. 9 Then said God, Call his name Loammi: for ye are not my people, and I will not be your God.
     10 Yet the number of the children of Israel shall be as the sand of the sea, which cannot be measured nor numbered; and it shall come to pass, that in the place where it was said unto them, Ye are not my people, there it shall be said unto them, Ye are the sons of the living God. 11 Then shall the children of Judah and the children of Israel be gathered together, and appoint themselves one head, and they shall come up out of the land: for great shall be the day of Jezreel.

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