About the Book of Hosea
Hosea wrote his book in the middle of the 8th century BC. He usually gave his messages to Israel's people. Israel was the name of the kingdom in the north. But some messages were for Judah's people, the kingdom in the south. If we want to understand this book, we need to understand God's covenant with the Israelites at Sinai. Sinai was the place where God gave his laws to Moses.
The good things and bad things that Hosea speaks about are part of this covenant. Hosea's job was to tell his people that there was danger. God wanted his people to obey the covenant. The Israelites must live in the right way. Hosea says that there will be death and disease in Israel. He also says that soldiers from another country will destroy their nation. They will take the Israelites away as their prisoners. After that, God will be able to do good things for Israel again.
There were only a few people in Israel who worshipped God in the right way at this time. There were more people in Judah who obeyed God's rules. Israel was a strong and rich nation and they could often win against other nations in war. Because of this, the Israelites knew about other nations' gods. They forgot the laws that God gave to them at Sinai.
Assyria and Israel were fighting each other in 734 BC. After that, Israel became a much weaker nation. Then, in 722 BC, Assyria destroyed Israel. They took its land for themselves.
We know very little about Hosea and his family. God told him to marry a prostitute who would not be a faithful wife for him. That was a picture of the Israelites who were not faithful to God. Hosea wanted the people to turn back to God and to obey him. If they did that, they could know God in a true way.