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  • Writer's pictureDominique McKay

Christ All Along

Recognizing God's great love for us

“She will chase after her lovers but not catch them; she will look for them but not find them. Then she will say, ‘I will go back to my husband … for then I was better off than now.’ She has not acknowledged that I was the one who gave her the grain, the new wine and oil, who lavished on her the silver and gold  which they used for Baal.” – Hosea 2:7-8

Throughout the Bible, God describes his relationship with his church as that of a husband and wife. In the 2009 film Julie & Julia, actor Stanley Tucci plays Paul Child, an American diplomat and husband of the famous Julia Child. The film depicts the couple’s life as Julia embarks on the process of publishing her very first cookbook

One memorable scene from the film shows the couple on Valentine’s Day, surrounded by a dinner feast and friends. As the couple swats away questions of whether or not they were secretly U.S. spies while working for the government, Paul interjects the discussion with an insight about how he and Julia fell in love. 

“There we were in China,” he describes. “Just friends having dinner … and it turned out to be Julia. It turned out to be Julia all along.”

Strikingly, in the book of Hosea, we find a marriage that is in stark contrast to what's depicted in the film Julie & Julia. Instead, our introduction to Hosea’s story begins with God calling him to marry a woman named Gomer  a wife who would remain unfaithful to him throughout their marriage (Hosea 1:2-3).

In Hosea 2, using Hosea and Gomer’s marriage as his example, God describes his relationship with his people. It’s a relationship where, like Gomer, God’s people remain unfaithful to him time and time again. In verse 7-8, he describes how they constantly pursue various lovers but are never satisfied. Then, in desperation, they turn back to their true love, God himself  not acknowledging it was he all along who supplied their every need, even in the midst of their unfaithfulness.

Has much really changed in the centuries that have passed since Hosea was written? Still now, despite being God’s people, we often look to others to satisfy our needs, including our bosses, our dating relationships, our friendships, and even our online followers. 

When those idols are crushed under the weight of our endless expectations, we run back to God with our accusations and demands. Never taking a single moment to acknowledge that it was God himself who provided us with our every need, even as we desperately sought after the praise and admiration of others.

Despite our wandering hearts, God is the one who ultimately brings us home for good. Like Hosea who is instructed in chapter 3 to redeem his wife by buying her back from bondage, God himself redeems his people through the cost of the sacrificial death and resurrection of Christ. 

“You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:6-8).

To the very end, God pursued us despite our wandering hearts and made the ultimate sacrifice to bring us back into relationship with himself.

It is Christ who is our ultimate redeemer, and the moment we come to a saving faith is the moment we look to him and realize it was Christ … it was Christ all along. As described in Song of Solomon 3:4, finally we’ve found the one whom our soul loves. We must hold onto him and never let him go.

Dominique McKay is a Women's Ministry Associate in Washington, D.C.


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