The True Bridegroom – Gospel in Life

The True Bridegroom

Tim Keller |  December 2, 2007

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  • Marriage
  • God's Love
Hosea 3:1-5; 11:4-11
RS 199-1


All the Hebrew prophets prophesied the coming of the Messiah. And, of course, Christians believe the Messiah they prophesied was born at Christmas. The Hebrew prophet Hosea tells us about the Messiah who is to come by telling us the account of his own messed-up marriage.

There’s a pastor who was the minister at Tenth Presbyterian Church in downtown Philadelphia for many years, James Boice, and he once published a series of sermons on Hosea in a book. In the book, if you go to the sermon on Hosea 3, the title of the sermon is “The Greatest Chapter in the Bible.” When we’re done, you may not think it’s the greatest chapter in the Bible, but I think you’ll see why some people do think that.

There are three things Hosea 3 teaches us. First, our relationship with God is like a marriage. Second, our relationship with God is like a bad marriage. Third, how God healed his marriage and what it cost him.

Hosea 3:1–5

The book of Hosea tells a story about a troubled marriage, and this story gives us a hint about Jesus coming to save us. The story shows us that our relationship with God is similar to a marriage, but it’s not perfect. It shows how God fixed this relationship even though it cost Him a lot. Hosea 3 is a chapter that teaches us a lot and many people think it’s one of the most important parts of the Bible.

1. Our relationship with God is like a marriage

In the book of Hosea, our relationship with God is shown as a marriage. This shows how God is always faithful and really loves us. It reminds us to put God first in everything, to enjoy a close relationship with Him, and to let His love change us. The problems in Hosea’s marriage show how much God loves us and how knowing Him can change us.

3. How God fixed His marriage and what it cost Him

The story of Hosea and his wife Gomer shows us that fixing a relationship takes hard work and thinking deeply about ourselves, even when there’s been a lot of pain in the past. It makes us think about how God’s love and forgiveness are like this. The main thing we can learn is to understand and accept how much God loves us, and to find happiness in Jesus’ love instead of trying to find it in other people or things in the world.



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Marriage is one of the most profound human relationships — but it can also be one of the most challenging. So Tim and Kathy Keller designed a devotional book for married couples to use together.