When Israel was a child, I loved him,
and out of Egypt I called my son.
The more they were called,
the more they went away;
they kept sacrificing to the Baals
and burning offerings to idols.
Yet it was I who taught Ephraim to walk;
I took them up by their arms,
but they did not know that I healed them.
I led them with cords of kindness,
with the bands of love,
and I became to them as one who eases the yoke on their jaws,
and I bent down to them and fed them. Hosea 11:1-4 ESV
An angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, “Rise, take the child and his mother, and flee to Egypt, and remain there until I tell you, for Herod is about to search for the child, to destroy him.” And he rose and took the child and his mother by night and departed to Egypt and remained there until the death of Herod. This was to fulfill what the Lord had spoken by the prophet, “Out of Egypt I called my son.” Matthew 2:13a-15 ESV
Danh was born in Vietnam, but his parents were very poor. They weren’t able to take care of him so they left him in an orphanage. But in Canada, Mr. and Mrs. Maier wanted a son very much. They decided to adopt a baby boy from Vietnam, and so they adopted Danh. They went to Vietnam and brought him home with them to their house in Canada, and Mr. and Mrs. Maier became Danh’s father and mother. They loved him very much, and taught him how to walk and carried him in their arms when he was tired. They fed him with a bottle and with a spoon and gave him all kinds of kindness and love. They got medicine for him to heal a skin infection on his arms and legs, and they did everything they could to give him a better life.
God said that the people of Israel had been like a son to him. The prophet Hosea sometimes calls the northern kingdom of Israel by the name of Ephraim, which was one of the tribes of the northern kingdom. God said that when Ephraim was a child in Egypt he had loved him and called him out of Egypt. Ephraim was his son, and he had taught him how to walk, and had carried him and fed him. God had healed him and taken the yoke of slavery in Egypt away from him. Even though God had been the kindest of fathers to his people, they didn’t love him back. They turned away from him and worshiped and sacrificed to false gods.
We are all like the people of Israel. We have turned away from our Heavenly Father and gone our own way. But God sent his Son, Jesus, to save us. When Jesus was a baby, the wicked King Herod tried to kill him, but an angel warned Joseph in a dream to take Jesus and his mother to Egypt to escape and hide from the king. When Herod was dead God called his true Son out of Egypt back to the promised land. Jesus grew up and died for us on the cross so that we could come back to God. Because of Jesus, our sins are forgiven and we are God’s children. God is a loving heavenly Father who heals us of the sins that hurt us and loves us and takes care of us.
Dear Heavenly Father, thank you for sending us your Son Jesus so that we could be your children now and forever. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.