Sow for yourselves righteousness; Reap in mercy; Break up your fallow ground, for it is time to seek the LORD, till He comes and rains righteousness on you.
The people of Hosea’s day had become hardened to God’s Word. They had heard it many times before and had grown apathetic to what God required of them. God’s solution was for them to break up the fallow ground of their hearts. They were to allow Him to soften their hardened hearts. When the earth was dry and crusty, the farmer would plow to loosen the soil so it was receptive to the seeds and the rains that would give life to the crop. Likewise, God’s people were to break up the sinful barriers in their lives that prevented God’s Word from penetrating their hearts. Then, said Hosea, God would give life and refresh them by raining down on them in righteousness.
As Christians, we must continually cultivate our hearts and minds so that they are receptive to whatever God tells us. John the Baptist exhorted those around him to prepare for Jesus’ coming. We, too, can remind others to prepare their lives so that God’s righteousness will penetrate and fill their lives. We can urge them to repent when we see sin sinking into their lives. We can share the joy that God’s Word brings us and encourage our friends to seek God’s will also. We can model obedience for our children. We can tell of the blessings that have come to us as a result of our obedience. We can help to break up the fallow ground in the hearts of those around us.
Hosea admonished God’s people to seek the Lord until His righteousness rained down upon them. We should immediately cultivate our heart whenever it starts to become hardened toward God. If we keep our hearts prepared, we will be ready when God’s Word comes to us.