Another type of the spiritual lewdness of Israel, 1-3. The punishment of it, 4. Their reformation, 5.
1 Then the LORD said to me, "Go back, love a woman beloved by her friend, yet an adulteress, according to the love of the LORD toward the children of Israel, who look to other gods and love flagons of wine." 2 So I bought her for myself for fifteen pieces of silver and for a homer and a half of barley. 3 And I said to her, "You shall wait for me many days. You shall not play the harlot and you shall not be with another man. I will also be so to you." 4 For the children of Israel shall abide many days without a king, without a prince, without a sacrifice, without an image, without an ephod, and without teraphim. 5 Afterward, the children of Israel shall return, and seek the LORD their God and David their king, and shall fear the LORD and his goodness in the latter days.
Matthew Henry Commentary - Hosea, Chapter 3[➚]
John Gill's Chapter Summary:
In this chapter is an order to the prophet to love an adulterous woman beloved of her friend, and by this parable to express the love of God to Israel, and their ingratitude to him (Hosea 3:1), the prophet’s execution of that order, making a purchase of her, and a covenant with her, which set forth the captive, servile, mean, and abject state of that people (Hosea 3:2-3), which is explained of their being deprived for a long time of civil and ecclesiastic government (Hosea 3:4), and the chapter is concluded with a prophecy and promise of their conversion to Christ in the latter day (Hosea 3:5).
[v.5a] - "and seek the LORD their God, and David their king" - From John Calvin's Commentary: "We must now of necessity come to Christ: for Israel could not seek their king, David, who had been long dead but were to seek that King whom God had promised from the posterity of David. This prophecy, then, no doubt extends to Christ and it is evident that the only hope of the people being gathered was this, that God had testified that he would give a Redeemer... This doctrine is especially useful to us; for it shows that God is not to be sought except in Christ the Mediator. Whoever, then, forsakes Christ, forsakes God himself; for as John says, 'He who has not the Son, has not the Father' (1st John 2:23). And the thing itself proves this; for God dwells in light inaccessible; how great, then is the distance between us and him? Except Christ, then, presents himself to us as a middle person, how can we come to God? But then only we begin really to seek God, when we turn our eyes to Christ, who willingly offers himself to us. This is the only way of seeking God aright."
[v.5b] - "in the latter days" - This may also be read as, "in the extremity of days." This is most likely referring to the time of the coming of Christ, for, as John Calvin says, "the Lord then performed more fully what he declares here by his Prophet."