His Love Is As Sure As the Dawn

Hosea 6:1-6 has been to me a passage of both comfort and conviction. The imagery is beautiful, and I distinctly remember the night when it awakened my soul to worship and my lips to song. Though I was without a comprehensive grip on the context of this passage (and thus, on the human author’s historical meaning), I could not help but hear the familiar themes of human weakness and gospel power. I could not help but see my own habit of half-hearted love and my God’s faithful practice of love through Christ to undeserving sinners like me.

Hosea 6 begins with a call and a promise to the wayward children of Israel:

(1) “’Come, let us return to the Lord; for he has torn us, that he may heal us; he has struck us down, and he will bind us up. (2) After two days he will revive us; on the third day he will raise us up, that we may live before him. (3) Let us know; let us press on to know the Lord; his going out is sure as the dawn; he will come to us as the showers, as the spring rains that water the earth.’”

It continues with God’s complaint against Israel and His explanation of His response:

(4) “What shall I do with you, O Ephraim? What shall I do with you, O Judah? Your love is like a morning cloud, like the dew that goes early away. (5) Therefore I have hewn them by the prophets; I have slain them by the words of my mouth, and my judgment goes forth as the light. (6) For I desire steadfast love and not sacrifice, the knowledge of God rather than burnt offerings.”

It was these aspects (the call, the promise, the complaint, and the explanation of God’s response) that inspired my song. I pictured a father who, both deeply grieved and angered by sin in his son’s life, came urgently to that son with reproof. While never losing his burning intention to eradicate his son’s sin, his ultimate goal was to restore the pure and joyful fellowship he once knew with that son. His anger was real, but it only lasted for a moment. It was his desire for loving fellowship with his son that drove him to extreme measures in the removal of sin – it even motivated him to wound the very son he loved.

The gospel echo in Hosea 6 is clearest in the phrase, “on the third day he will raise us up” (v. 2). How can you read this and not think of Easter Sunday and the empty tomb? How can the Christian read this and not remember that our identification with Christ involves, in a very real sense, our spiritual resurrection with Him? Now, notice the purpose given in Hosea for our being raised up. It is so that we “may live before him.” But before who? Before God the Father. Christ’s mission was to reconcile us to the Father (1 Peter 3:18). Apart from Christ no one can truly experience God as Father (John 14:6-7). Consequently – and this is a truth that should devastate all those who reject Jesus – apart from Christ, God’s love for us is not “as sure as the dawn.”

Here, then, are the lyrics to my song. Before the lyrics is a link to an audio clip of me playing the music behind spoken lyrics. You will notice that, different from Hosea, it is all from God’s perspective. If you are in Christ, it is what the Father says to you.


My Love Is As Sure As the Dawn

“Your love is like the morning mist,
the dew that kissed the ground
and now has wandered away.
My love is as sure as the dawn.

And though I strike you down and take
what seems to be your very life
I’ll lift you, revive you, heal.

Don’t fear, don’t run.
My presence here is as a Father’s with a Son
beloved.
In Christ begun,
in Christ the rains will come and help you carry on.

Say, ‘Come, let us return to the Lord
that we might live before Him.
Press on to understand your God
and steadfastly adore Him.’

Do not grow weary when reproved;
I discipline you for your good
that you might be holy,
righteous and fruitful children.

So, strengthen feeble hands and let
the mind of Christ control you that
my name might be holy in the earth.

Don’t fear, don’t run.
My presence here is as a Father’s with a Son
beloved.
In Christ begun,
in Christ the rains will come and help you carry on.

Say, ‘Come, let us return to the Lord
that we might live before Him.
Press on to understand your God
and steadfastly adore Him.'”

May Christ be yours and may you know the Father’s life-giving love.

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