Hosea 4:6 My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge. Because you have rejected knowledge, I will reject you from serving as My priest. Since you have forgotten the law of your God, I will also forget your sons.
Ouch – that’s gotta hurt. God is telling his people that He is going to reject them since they have forgotten Him. Oh, and their sons too. It’s not like God didn’t put effort into the relationship; He pursued Israel over and over again. But Israel didn’t try to know Him or even try to follow His instructions. They weren’t studying His commands, exercising any discernment, and had no wisdom.
Let me offer this picture of a husband and wife. After all, this is the picture God is using in the book of Hosea to describe His relationship with Israel. Now in most of the books we read and movies we watch today, it is the husband who checks out of the marriage. Not always, but that’s pretty standard. He gets busy with his job, his friends, his hobbies, and forgets to pursue his wife. Then one day (seemingly out of the blue to him) she says, “you don’t know me anymore.” What? I don’t know you? Didn’t I spend all those years dating you and spending hours on the phone? How can you say that I don’t know you?
There is an obvious disconnect here. Where’s the breakdown? Here’s the deal: it’s not that he never knew her, it’s that he STOPPED knowing her. In the same way, God’s people stopped knowing Him. They stopped listening to His words, following His commands, and pursuing His relationship. The result: perishing. And things aren’t a whole lot different today. If you don’t pursue God and your relationship with Him, the same thing will happen to you, too. You will feel like His voice is shriveling up and His Word is a bunch of text on a page. So you’ve got to pursue Him! If you don’t, you will find that hope perishes from your life. Faith perishes. Love perishes. You perish. The last thing I want to hear from my God is, “you don’t know me anymore.” Oh… and I also don’t want to perish.