Sung Psalm 50:9-17
Read Hosea 1
In the chronology of the kings of Israel it is noteworthy that the last of each dynasty were murdered namely: Nabad (I Kings 15:27) in Gibbethon, Elah (I Kings 16:9-10) in Tirzah, Zimri (self-murder/suicide) in Tirzah and Jehoram (II Kings 9:24) by Jehu in Jezreel.
It is to this latter event and the bloodshed in Jezreel that Hosea 1:4 refers and the detail of that bloodshed that the prophet so well knew about was:
- Joram killed by Jehu.
- Ahaziah killed by Jehu’s men.
- Jezebel killed by palace eunuchs at Jehu’s request.
- Ahab’s seventy sons-killed by the elders of Samaria when coerced by Jehu with their heads dumped outside Jezreel.
- Ahab’s leaders, relatives and priests by Jehu’s command (II Kings 10-11).
While all this bloodshed was commanded by God (II Kings 9:7-8 and 10:30) and is even commended by God, nevertheless Jehu was an idolatrous unbeliever who told lies (10:18) and was guilty of hypocrisy (10:16). The lesson from his life is that it is possible to appear formally obedient to God yet be far from him in heart and have no true love for him and his cause.