The Door of Hope
When we feel all is lost,
our repentance can
provide a way out
“I will give her her
vineyards from there,
And the Valley of Achor
as a door of hope.”
— Hosea 2:15a
Why did the Lord say that “the Valley of Achor” would be for Israel a “door of hope?” Because that was the place where Israel, not long after entering the Good Land, repented and dealt with its sin in the matter of the accursed things that had been taken from the city of Jericho. The Lord was saying that, just as in the past, so in the future, Israel’s repentance would be a door of hope for its salvation.
J.N. Darby writes in his Synopsis on Hosea 2:
There, [in the Valley of Achor,] where the judgment of God began to fall on the unfaithful people after their entrance into the land, when God acted according to the responsibility of the people-there would He now show that grace abounded over all their sin.
— Hosea 2:15
In this section of Hosea, God is speaking of Israel’s unfaithfulness to Him, how she had “played the harlot” by running after other gods (2:5). As a result, God would deal with her severely, punishing her for her idolatry, but ultimately, helping her turn back to Him. He would bring her into the wilderness and there give her “the Valley of Achor as a door of hope.” And once she had repented, He says,
“She shall sing there,
As in the days of
As in the day when
she came up from
the land of Egypt.”
— Hosea 2:15b
That is, it will be a completely new beginning for her, just as she had a new beginning when she first came up from Egypt. As Darby states in conclusion:
In a word, there should be an entire restoration of blessing, but on the ground of grace and of the faithfulness of God.
In the same way, God loves us too much to ever overlook our sin and unfaithfulness to Him. Rather, He must always deal with such things, sometimes even in a severe way, to turn us back to Himself:
The goodness of God leads you to repentance.
— Romans 2:4
And we may well feel, after such an experience, that all is lost; we have been unfaithful, God has been severe, and there is no longer a way to go on. Indeed, Joshua himself felt that way after Israel sinned and God allowed them to be defeated (Josh. 7:7-9).
And yet, there is “a door of hope” for us as well! If only we are willing to submit to the Lord’s dealings with us, so that we repent and deal with ourselves in His light for all our unfaithfulness to Him, then He will turn and be gracious to us once again, and bring us into the blessing He has always desired to give us.
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— 22 October 2022 —