Remembrance in the Wilderness
Hosea 13:5
I did know you in the wilderness, in the land of great drought.…

No more signal instance of Divine interposition is recorded, even in the wonderful history of Israel, than the care and guidance and protection vouchsafed to the chosen people in their desert-wanderings. No wonder that the inspired prophets should again and again refer to this marvelous record of Divine regard, remembrance, and assistance.


1. To Israel and to humanity (for of the race at large was the chosen people a type) God reveals himself when help is sorely needed. In the wilderness the people hungered; they thirsted; they were in danger from many perils of the way; they were opposed and harassed by many foes; they were beset by frequent perplexities; they were cast down by many fears. Similarly, this race of mankind was without any supply for its sorest needs, without any deliverance from direst dangers and mightiest and most malignant foes, when the eternal Father "remembered us in our low estate."

2. It was an occasion when all other resource and hope were vain. In this respect the tribes in the desert were representative of humanity. "I looked, and there was no helper."


1. The thoughtfulness of God supplies his people's wants. Israel's hunger was met by manna; Israel's thirst by water from the rock, etc. So "the Lord hath been mindful of us." Every spiritual want is supplied in the gospel, where is living water, heavenly bread, etc.

2. Adversaries are overcome by the interposition of the Most High. He who vanquished Israel's foes led captivity captive, and secured salvation for all who trust in him.

3. Difficulties are removed by Divine intervention.

4. Courage and hope are inspired in the breasts of the timid and downcast.

5. Gratitude, piety, and devotion are enkindled in the souls of those who are set free and rescued by the interposition of a merciful and mighty Savior.

APPLICATION. The gracious knowledge and remembrance of God, leading to merciful interposition on our behalf, should incite us to think upon and to remember him "who led his people through the wilderness; for his mercy endureth forever." - T.

Parallel Verses
KJV: I did know thee in the wilderness, in the land of great drought.

WEB: I knew you in the wilderness, in the land of great drought.

Mercy in Beneficent Action and in Retributive Displeasure
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