Humans Cannot Create Righteousness!
Sow for yourselves according to righteousness (uprightness and right standing with God); reap according to mercy and loving-kindness. Break up your uncultivated ground, for it is time to seek the Lord, to inquire for and of Him, and to require His favor, till He comes and teaches you righteousness and rains His righteous gift of salvation upon you.
Hosea 10:12 (AMP)
Hosea repeatedly used illustrations about fields and crops. Here he envisions a plowed field. It is no longer stony and hard; it is ready for planting.
He puts to them a principle of sowing and reaping. If they want a change in the life of Israel there is something they must do. God has provided everything that they needed. God was ready to give them help. He had given them guidance and put them under a yoke of his discipline. He was ready to bring them into a life of righteousness. But it would take involvement on their part.
If they would ‘sow a seed’ of righteousness, God would be ready to show them a harvest of mercy. This means that God would show mercy towards them, but also it means that if they would return to righteousness, the people of Israel would become a people of mercy, rather than, like the men of Gibeah, a society of merciless savagery.
He tells them that they must firmly take themselves in hand. They had been in wickedness and hardness for many years. They were like hard soil, but they need to break up the hardness of the ground. It would mean facing what they had become and resolving to look to God to break habits that had become entrenched in their national life.
He calls them to seek God (“for it is time to seek the Lord”), and, on behalf of God, tells them what will happen if they do (“… till He comes and teaches you righteousness and rains His righteous gift of salvation upon you”). To seek God means to find out what his will is, to follow after the experience of his presence as the living God. If they will live in such a way, God will pour out on them the experiences and rewards of righteousness.
Humans cannot create righteousness in their own strength and through their own planning and actions. Human righteousness comes only as a gift from God, as Paul says in Romans (Rom. 1:16-17).
Is your life ready for God to work in it?
Keep watch over your heart and over your spiritual life. Sin is insidious; it may seem harmless in the beginning, but its end brings destruction and separation from God. Do not allow it to germinate in the soil of your heart. Hosea instructs us to break up the hard places in our lives and to sow the seed of righteousness.
Sow righteousness in your life and you will reap the fruit of faithfulness and mercy. Ask God to show you and to soften any places in your spiritual life that have become hardened so that the soil of your heart will be ready to receive seed that will bear much fruit.
We are to determine in our hearts to do what is right according to God’s will, trusting Him to meet all of our needs.
DECLARATION OF FAITH
I make a habit of sowing seeds of righteousness and I reap the fruit of unfailing love.
I stir myself up to act upon the Word and seek the face of God. He has showered me with His favour and the blessings of His promises.
I declare this declaration of faith in the name of Jesus Christ! Amen.
Focus on the Bible Commentary – Hosea
Holman Old Testament Commentary