DEVOTION FOR WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 1, 2017
Read Hosea 12:2–10
Waiting is a Spiritual Imperative
Waiting in daily life is an inevitable and often tiresome experience. We’re put on hold during phone calls. We sit as we wait in rooms for medical appointments. We wait in line to pay for items in stores. We take a number in a restaurant and wait for it to be called.
Sometimes spiritual waiting feels like that. Yet as we’ll see this month, to wait on the Lord is an important and exciting biblical theme. In fact, as today’s passage reveals, waiting is a spiritual imperative, an activity in which all believers must engage (v. 6). During our study, we’ll consider how and why this is so, what biblical waiting means, how waiting is an essential part of salvation, and how and why to cultivate the associated virtue of patience.
In today’s passage, the Lord charged Israel with sinfully abandoning her covenant responsibilities and Him (v. 2). Fraud and injustice were being practiced, and the rich seemed to think that money could conceal their sin (vv. 7–8). Jacob had similarly sought to deceive for his own advantage, and his descendants were following in his footsteps (vv. 3–5). They should have known better (vv. 9–10)!
Verse 6 presents the standard for what God’s people should have been doing and what they had to do to return to Him. Their priorities must be love, justice, and waiting on the Lord. Faithful love (the Hebrew word is hesed) is at the heart of the relationship between God and His people. Justice is also a well-known imperative from verses such as Micah 6:8 and Amos 5:24.
The surprise on the list is the third item: “Wait for your God always.” How amazing that waiting on the Lord is here made equivalent with pursuing love and justice! This deserves our attention.
APPLY THE WORD
We may think we already know what waiting is and what it means. But as this study proceeds, we encourage you to set aside your personal preconceptions and cultural ideas—especially those related to productivity and the fast pace of life—in order to see the biblical meaning and significance of “waiting on the Lord.”
Today in the Word is a production of Moody Global Ministries