Hi, my name is Jim Garlow, I lead a ministry called Well Versed. There is a word in the Old Testament, in the Hebrew. It looks like it would be “cheesed”, c-h-e-s-e-d, but it is pronounced “Hess-ed”. Chesed. What is that word? Well, let me tell you a story.
There was a man named Hosea. Hosea was commanded by God to marry a particular woman with an unusual name. Her name was Gomer. He got married to Gomer, beautiful Gomer. After a while, he started noticing that she kind of gave attention to other men’s glances. Had one child, had another child, and finally, God directed him to name one of the children “Not of me”. Which was a way of saying that child was in fact not Hosea’s child. He was heartbroken. She left and she wandered off. She left him with three little children.
And then, the time he was walking through the village, he saw them auctioning off the slaves. And there he saw a slave girl. Their eyes met for a nanosecond. He recognized her. That was his wife, his former wife, who had left before. And now the life she had lived, had taken a toll on her beauty. Didn’t look quite like she did. But he was sure that was her. They were auctioning her off and he jumped into the bidding. He began, with great excitement, bid and hoped to buy her. And he did. And he bought her back.
And they began to make their way back to the home. They were silent, not a word was said. They were traveling the dusty trail to get to the home. And then he said to her, “I have always loved you. I never stopped loving you. I have redeemed you for myself. I love you.”
That story of Hosea in the Old Testament is an incredible story of the depth of God’s love for Israel. Israel had turned its back on God so many times. He never stopped believing in Israel. But it goes further in its application, spiritually to us. That word chesed is translated: love or mercy. It is actually best translated as tenacious love. A love that won’t give up on somebody. That is the depth of love God has for you. It is a tenacious love.
You may think, “Well, I have committed too many sins.” Nope. God is not giving up on you. You may think, “Well, I am not all that desirable.” God is not giving up on you. “I am not all that important.” God is not giving up on you. He loves you with a chesed love. From the Old Testament Hebrew. That is a love that will not let me go. That is how much He loves you right now. He refuses to give up on you. His love is coming after you right now. He wants to buy you back to redeem you, to lead you back home.