Hosea 1:4 “And the LORD said to him, ‘Call his name Jezreel, for in just a little while I will punish the house of Jehu for the blood of Jezreel, and I will put an end to the kingdom of the house of Israel.’”
This verse is about the first born son of Hosea. God gives him a name and the name will bring up thoughts in the mind of Hosea. You can read about the Valley of Jezreel in the books of the Kings.
This is an interesting passage and a difficult one at the same time. While it is true that Jehu slaughtered Ahab and Jezebel as well as others in the valley of Jezreel it is also true that God commends him for doing so. So what is the blood of Jezreel? It is possible that Jehu and Israel will be punished in the same way as those in the valley of Jezreel and for much the same reason. This makes sense, although it requires a slightly different translation of the verse. Whatever, this verse and the following indicate that Jehu and the kingdom of Israel are going to meet a disastrous fate.
All of Hosea’s children by Gomer will get names that indicate action taken by God against Israel. It is an interesting method of prophecy but certainly made things plain to Hosea. How would you feel naming your children after forthcoming disasters? Just the opposite plans are made for Judah and eventually the entire people of God. What a story!
Task for Today: No matter how it comes, the word of God is certain and sure. Punishment and reward are a part of that plan. How do you stand in relationship to the judgment that will come when Jesus returns? Are you like Israel or Judah as seen in the first chapter of Hosea?