HERE are two things on display in Hosea 13: the attitude of humanity, and the attitude of divinity. Of course, everything starts and stops with God's point of view. We are not light. We are dirty mirrors at best. God is light & there is no darkness in Him (1st John 1:5 & James 1:17). Because of the great chasm between God's perspective & ours, many things about His ways appear to be upside down & backwards to us. His ways transcend us (Romans 11:33). But more than His ways being unattainable to us, they literally appear to be inverse. Here in Hosea 13:1 we read that when Israel was humble and weak, she was very prosperous. But, when success, confidence and pride set in, she destroyed herself.
So, the way to have is to give (Luke 6:38). The way to live is to die (Matthew 10:39). The way to lead is to serve (Mark 10:44). And, the list of Biblical paradoxes goes on and on. By letting go, we retain; the way up is down; the last are first; the least are the greatest; the way to be strong is to become weak; the way to win is to surrender; the way to be exalted is to abase yourself. Get the point? And here, as Israel settled into a comfortable feeling of security, it was then that they were closer than ever to destruction (Hosea 13:3). True to the pattern, their fruitfulness was leading to their coming desolation.