Jeroboam II becomes king of IsraelAmos becomes a prophet Hosea becomes a prophet; King Zachariah of Israel is killed King Shallum of Israel is killed  Tiglath-pileser III
invades Israel
Micah becomes a prophet to Judah  Isaiah becomes a prophet to JudahIsrael (northern kingdom) falls  Hosea's ministry ends 
 793 B.C. 760 753 752 743 742 740722  715

Vital statistics

 Purpose: To illustrate God's love for his sinful people
 Author: Hosea son of Beeri ("Hosea" means "salvation")
 Original audience: The people of Israel (the northern kingdom)
 Date written: Approximately 715 B.C., recording events from about 753-715 B.C.
 Setting: Hosea began his ministry during the end of the prosperous but morally declining reign of Jeroboam II of Israel (the upper classes were doing well, but they were oppressing the poor). He prophesied until shortly after the fall of Samaria in 722 B.C. 
 Key verse: "Then the Lord said to me, 'Go and love your wife again, even though she commits adultery with another lover. This will illustrate that the Lord still loves Israel, even though the people have turned to other gods and love to worship them" (3:1)
 Key people: Hosea, Gomer, their children
 Key places: The northern kingdom (Israel), Samaria, Ephraim.
 Special features: Hosea employs many images from daily life: God is depicted as husband, lion, leopard, bear, dew, rain, moth, and others; Israel is pictured as wife, sick person, vine, grapes, early fruit, olive tree, woman in childbirth, oven, morning mist, chaff, and smoke, to name a few.  

The Rulers and Prophets of Hosea's Time


Kings of Assyria

       755-745 Ashurnirari722-705 Sargon II  
       Tiglath-pileserIII   745-727705-781Sennacherib
        727-722 ShalmanaserV  

Kings of Israel (Northern Kingdom)


793         Jeroboam II           753

Menahem   752 742 Northern ten tribes taken captive by King Shalmaneser V of Assyria in 722

752 Pekah 732

732 Hoshea 722

       Shallum one month    

Hosea and His Contemporary Prophets       (Northern Kingdom)


 765          HOSEA          714


   Jonah     784         772

 Amos     767 755


Kings of Judah  (Southern Kingdom)


 790 Uzziah or Azariah 739

735 Ahaz 715


750   Jotham   731


730                    Hezekiah                    686

Prophets to       Judah           (Southern Kingdom)


 739                            Isaiah                            681


 733      Micah     701


Israel’s Prophets
Hosea’s Marriage
Jer. 2:2
Hos. 1:2
Ezek. 16:8–14
Hos. 1:3
Jer. 5:7;
Ezek. 16:15–34
Hos. 3:1
Jer. 3:8–10;
Ezek. 16:35–52
Hos. 3:3–4
Ezek. 16:53–63
Hos. 3:5
Word in life study Bible . 1997, c1996 (electronic ed.) (Os 3.1). Nashville: Thomas Nelson.

Israel’s Apostasy and Hosea’s Marriage

The stages of Israel’s relationship with God are depicted in the prophecies of Jeremiah an Ezekiel, as well as in Hosea’s relationship with Gomer.

 Stage Israel’s Prophets Hosea’s Marriage
 Betrothal Jeremiah 2:2 Hosea 1:2
 Marriage Ezekiel 16:8-14 Hosea 1:3
 Adultery Jeremiah 5:7Ezekiel 16:15-34 Hosea 3:1
 Estrangement Jeremiah 3:8-10Ezekiel 16:35-52 Hosea 3:34
 Restoration Ezekiel 16:53-63 Hosea 3:5
New Geneva study Bible. 1997, c1995 (electronic ed.) (Os 2.15). Nashville: Thomas Nelson.


Served as a prophet to Israel (the northern kingdom) from 753-715 B.C.

 Israel's last six kings were especially wicked, they promoted heavy taxes, oppression of the poor, idol worship, and total disregard for God. Israel was subjected to Assyria and was forced to pay tribute, which depleted its few remaining resources.

 The people of Israel had sinned against God, as an adulterous woman sins against her husband. Judgment was sure to come for living in total disregard for God and fellow humans. Israel fell to Assyria in 722 B.C.


 When we sin, we sever our relationship with God, breaking our commitment to him. White all must answer to God for their sins, those who seek God's forgiveness are spared eternal judgment.

 Jonah (793-753 B.C.), Amos (760-750 B.C.), Micah (742-687 B.C.), Isaiah (740-681 B.C.)

The Blueprint


  Hosea was commanded by God to marry a woman who would be unfaithful to him and would cause him many heartaches. Just as Gomer lost interest in Hosea and ran after other lovers, we, too, can easily lose appreciation for our special relationship with God and pursue dreams and goals that do not include him. When we compromise our Christian lifestyles and adopt the ways of the world, we are being unfaithful.    

  God wanted the people in the northern kingdom to turn from their sin and return to worshiping him alone, but they persisted in their wickedness. Throughout the book Israel is described as ignorant of God, with no desire to please him. Israel did not understand God at all, just as Gomer did not understand Hosea. Like a loving husband or patient father, God wants people to know him and to turn to him daily. 

Hosea Overview

God's Loving Kindness to Israel

  Hosea and Gomer God and Israel 
 Betrothal Hos 1:2 Assumed; Jer 2:2; Eze 16:8
 One Flesh Hos 1:3 Assumed; Jer 3:1; Eze 16:9-14
 Adultery Hos 2:2; 3:1 Hos 2:5; 4:12; Jer 3:6; 5:7; Eze 16:15-34
 Divorce  Hos 3:1 Hos 2:2; Jer 3:8-10, 20; Eze 16:35-59
 Remarriage Hos 3:3-5 Hos 1:10, 11; 2:14-23; 14:4-9; Jer 3:22-4:2; Eze 16:60-63