Hosea 11 A Remnant Is Called.
The mercy and righteousness of 10:12 would ultimately only come to Israel through calling out of the house of bondage in Egypt, one who would be called God’s ‘Son,’ the LORD’s Messiah (v. 1 Cf. My. 2:15). It would be a deliverance based upon a renewal of the covenant (Ex. 4:22-24). However, of those who were called most turned to sacrificing to the Baals, “and burned incense to carved images” (v. 2 Cf. II Kgs. 17:13-15). It was the LORD who raised up the people from their infancy as individuals and as a nation, preserving and healing them along the way, “with gentle cords, with bands of love, but because they refused to repent, they would be taken captive by Assyria, whose king would be their king (vv. 3-5 Cf. Ex. 15:26; 16:32; Lev. 26:13; Dt. 1:31; 32:10-11; Ps. 78:25). They decided to follow their own counsels instead of the word of the LORD (v. 6).
They called on the LORD, but because their hearts were divided they were backsliding and did not exalt Him as LORD (v. 7, 12a; Jer. 3:6-7; 8:5). However, the thought of abandoning the totality of the nation was something which stirred up the LORD’s sympathy for a remnant. The nation may have forsaken the bond of the covenant, but the LORD could not nullify His promise to the seed in His own commitment to the covenant (vv. 8-9 Cf. Nu. 23:19-20). “Restoration, not destruction, is the goal of God’s judgment of His covenant people” (NGSB. p. 1376). The remnant would “walk after the LORD,” who would roar like a lion against their enemies, they would “come trembling from the west” (v. 10 (Cf. Is. 31:4; Joel 3:16), to once again dwell in their place in the promised land (v. 11 Cf. Ex. 28:25-26; 34:27-28; Is. 11:11; 60:8), Judah with “the Holy One who is faithful” (v. 12b).