Hosea 14 – “Yahweh’s Anger and Mercy – Part III”

Hebrew-English Text
I. Summary
The men, women, and children of Israel will be slain by the sword. Yet, Yahweh will have mercy and restore the people in its land.

II. Photo
God voices his wrath: “They shall fall by the sword, their infants shall be dashed to death, and their women with child ripped open!” (v. 1b)

III. Important Verses
1: Samaria must bear her guilt, For she has defied her God. They shall fall by the sword, Their infants shall be dashed to death, And their women with child ripped open.
2-4: Return, O Israel, to the LORD your God, For you have fallen because of your sin. Take words with you And return to the LORD. Say to Him: “Forgive all guilt And accept what is good; Instead of bulls we will pay [The offering of] our lips. Assyria shall not save us, No more will we ride on steeds; Nor ever again will we call Our handiwork our god, Since in You alone orphans find pity!”
5-6: I will heal their affliction, Generously will I take them back in love; For My anger has turned away from them. I will be to Israel like dew; He shall blossom like the lily, He shall strike root like a Lebanon tree.
10: He who is wise will consider these words, He who is prudent will take note of them. For the paths of the LORD are smooth; The righteous can walk on them, While sinners stumble on them.

IV. Outline
1. God decrees death upon Israel’s men, women, and children
2-4. Exhortation to return to God
5-9. God will accept Israel and support it
10. Postscript: The righteous follow God and the sinners stumble

V. Comment
No comment today. Stay tuned.

VI. Works Used
(see “Commentaries” page)
Collins, John J. “Introduction to the Hebrew Bible,” (Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 2004).
Photo taken from http://www.caitlinmaloneyphotographyblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/07/10_1914.jpg

Hosea 13 – “Yahweh’s Anger and Mercy – Part II”

Hebrew-English Text
I. Summary
While Yahweh decides to punish Israel for its idolatrous ways, he promises to have mercy.

II. Photo
God articulates his wrath: “Like a bear robbed of her young I attack them and rip open the casing of their hearts; I will devour them there like a lion, the beasts of the field shall mangle them!” (v. 8 )

III. Important Verses
1-2: When Ephraim spoke piety, He was exalted in Israel; But he incurred guilt through Baal, And so he died. And now they go on sinning; They have made them molten images, Idols, by their skill, from their silver, Wholly the work of craftsmen. Yet for these they appoint men to sacrifice; They are wont to kiss calves!
4: Only I the LORD have been your God Ever since the land of Egypt; You have never known a [true] God but Me, You have never had a helper other than Me.
6-9: When they grazed, they were sated; When they were sated, they grew haughty; And so they forgot Me. So I am become like a lion to them, Like a leopard I lurk on the way; Like a bear robbed of her young I attack them And rip open the casing of their hearts; I will devour them there like a lion, The beasts of the field shall mangle them. You are undone, O Israel! You had no help but Me.
14: From Sheol itself I will save them, Redeem them from very Death. Where, O Death, are your plagues? Your pestilence where, O Sheol? Revenge shall be far from My thoughts.

IV. Outline
1-2. Israel’s idol worship
3. Israel’s punishment
4-9. God is Israel’s God, even if he punishes them
10-11. Israel’s kings are futile
12. Israel’s guilt
13. Birthstool metaphor
14. God will have mercy
15. Dry winds for Israel

V. Comment
No comment today. Stay tuned.

VI. Works Used
(see “Commentaries” page)
Collins, John J. “Introduction to the Hebrew Bible,” (Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 2004).
Photo taken from http://ragamuffinsalt.files.wordpress.com/2008/06/scary-bear.jpg

Hosea 12 – “Yahweh’s Anger and Mercy”

Hebrew-English Text
I. Summary
Despite Israel’s many sins, Yahweh will restore the people in their land.

II. Photo
Israel is reproved for its international relations: “Now they make a covenant with Assyria, Now oil is carried to Egypt!” (v. 2b)

III. Important Verses
3-5: The LORD once indicted Judah, And punished Jacob for his conduct, Requited him for his deeds. In the womb he tried to supplant his brother; Grown to manhood, he strove with a divine being, He strove with an angel and prevailed — The other had to weep and implore him. At Bethel [Jacob] would meet him, There to commune with him.
8-9: A trader who uses false balances, Who loves to overreach, Ephraim thinks, “Ah, I have become rich; I have gotten power! All my gains do not amount To an offense which is real guilt.”
10: I the LORD have been your God Ever since the land of Egypt. I will let you dwell in your tents again As in the days of old,
12: As for Gilead, it is worthless; And to no purpose have they Been sacrificing oxen in Gilgal: The altars of these are also Like stone heaps upon a plowed field.
13: Then Jacob had to flee to the land of Aram; There Israel served for a wife, For a wife he had to guard [sheep].

IV. Outline
1-2. The sins of Israel
3a. God’s lawsuit
3b-5. Historical background: the name of Jacob
6-7. Exhortation to return to God
8-9. Israel’s greed and corruption
10-11. God will restore Israel
12. Israel’s worthless sacrifices at Gilgal
13. Israel’s subjugation by Aram
14. God’s work in Egypt
15. God punished Israel

V. Comment
No comment today. Stay tuned.

VI. Works Used
(see “Commentaries” page)
Collins, John J. “Introduction to the Hebrew Bible,” (Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 2004).
Photo taken from http://www.savorsa.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/09/CookingWithOliveOil.jpg

Hosea 11 – “Yahweh Has Second Thoughts”

Hebrew-English Text
I. Summary
After vowing to destroy Israel, Yahweh has a change of heart and promises to return the people to their land.

II. Photo
God remembers Israel’s bygone days: “I fell in love with Israel when he was still a child; And I have called [him] my son ever since Egypt.” (v. 1)

III. Important Verses
1: I fell in love with Israel When he was still a child; And I have called [him] My son Ever since Egypt.
2: Thus were they called, But they went their own way; They sacrifice to Baalim And offer to carved images.
5-6: No! They return to the land of Egypt, And Assyria is their king. Because they refuse to repent, A sword shall descend upon their towns And consume their limbs And devour [them] because of their designs.
8-9: How can I give you up, O Ephraim? How surrender you, O Israel? How can I make you like Admah, Render you like Zeboiim? I have had a change of heart, All My tenderness is stirred. I will not act on My wrath, Will not turn to destroy Ephraim. For I am God, not man, The Holy One in your midst: I will not come in fury.
10-11: The LORD will roar like a lion, And they shall march behind Him; When He roars, His children shall come Fluttering out of the west. They shall flutter from Egypt like sparrows, From the land of Assyria like doves; And I will settle them in their homes — declares the LORD.

IV. Outline
1. God’s past relationship with Israel
2-5. Israel’s idol worship and allegiance to Egypt and Assyria
6-7. Israels forthcoming punishment
8-11. God changes his mind and will not destroy Israel

V. Comment
No comment today. Stay tuned.

VI. Works Used
(see “Commentaries” page)
Collins, John J. “Introduction to the Hebrew Bible,” (Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 2004).
Photo taken from http://www.tssphoto.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/01/baby-hand-on-father_800px.jpg

Hosea 10 – “Doom for Israel”

Hebrew-English Text
I. Summary
Yahweh will exile Israel, eradicate its monarchy, destroy its cities, and banish its idols.

II. Photo
Israel’s end approaches: “Israel is a ravaged vine and its fruit is like it.” (v. 1a)

III. Important Verses
5-7: The inhabitants of Samaria fear For the calf of [Beth-]aven; Indeed, its people and priestlings, Whose joy it once was, Mourn over it for the glory That is departed from it. It too shall be brought to Assyria As tribute to a patron king; Ephraim shall be chagrined, Israel shall be dismayed Because of his plans. Samaria’s monarchy is vanishing Like foam upon water,
10-15:  As peoples gather against them? When I chose [them], I broke them in, Harnessing them for two furrows. Ephraim became a trained heifer, But preferred to thresh; I placed a yoke Upon her sleek neck. I will make Ephraim do advance plowing; Judah shall do [main] plowing! Jacob shall do final plowing!  “Sow righteousness for yourselves; Reap the fruits of goodness; Break for yourselves betimes fresh ground Of seeking the LORD, So that you may obtain a teacher of righteousness.” You have plowed wickedness, You have reaped iniquity — [And] you shall eat the fruits of treachery — Because you relied on your way, On your host of warriors. But the din of war shall arise in your own people, And all your fortresses shall be ravaged As Beth-arbel was ravaged by Shalman On a day of battle, When mothers and babes were dashed to death together. This is what Bethel has done to you For your horrible wickedness: At dawn shall Israel’s monarchy Utterly perish.

IV. Outline
1-5. Ephraim still turns to its gods after its destruction
6-8. Ephraim’s gods will be destroyed
9. Accusation
10-13. Plowing metaphor: Ephraim has plowed wickedness, not righteousness
14-15. Israel’s cities and monarchy will fall

V. Comment
No comment today. Stay tuned.

VI. Works Used
(see “Commentaries” page)
Collins, John J. “Introduction to the Hebrew Bible,” (Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 2004).
Photo – A personal photograph by David Moster (9/2010)

Hosea 9 – “Exile for Israel”

Hebrew-English Text
I. Summary
Yahweh will exile Israel because of its sins.

II. Photo
God will exile Israel: “Weeds will be their heirs; Prickly shrubs will occupy their [old] homes.” (v. 6b)

III. Important Verses
1: Rejoice not, O Israel, As other peoples exult; For you have strayed Away from your God: You have loved a harlot’s fee By every threshing floor of new grain.
3: They shall not be able to remain In the land of the LORD. But Ephraim shall return to Egypt And shall eat unclean food in Assyria.
5-6: What will you do about feast days, About the festivals of the LORD? Behold, they have gone from destruction [With] the silver they treasure. Egypt shall hold them fast, Moph shall receive them in burial. Weeds are their heirs; Prickly shrubs occupy their [old] homes.
10:  I found Israel [as pleasing] As grapes in the wilderness; Your fathers seemed to Me Like the first fig to ripen on a fig tree. But when they came to Baal-peor, They turned aside to shamefulness; Then they became as detested As they had been loved.
13: It shall go with Ephraim As I have seen it go with Tyre, Which was planted in a meadow; Ephraim too must bring out His children to slayers.
16-17: Ephraimo is stricken, Their stock is withered; They can produce no fruit. Even if they do bear children, I will slay their cherished offspring. My God rejects them Because they have not obeyed Him, And they shall go wandering Among the nations.

IV. Outline
1-6. Sin and exile for Israel
7a. God tells Hosea to prophesy
7b-8. The fate of Ephraim’s prophets
9-10. Israel’s rejection of God
11-14. Ephraim will be destroyed
15. Ephraim’s downfall began at Gilgal
16-17. Ephraim’s fate: no more living offspring and exile

V. Comment
No comment today. Stay tuned.

VI. Works Used
(see “Commentaries” page)
Collins, John J. “Introduction to the Hebrew Bible,” (Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 2004).
Photo taken from http://www.magicravenphotography.com/Old%20house%20w%20tall%20weeds.jpg

Hosea 8 -“Doom for Israel”

Hebrew-English Text
I. Summary
Yahweh lambastes Israel for sinning and vows to destroy its cities.

II. Photo
God rejects Israel’s sacrifices: “When they present sacrifices to me, it is but flesh for them to eat: The Lord has not accepted them!” (v. 13a)

III. Important Verses
2-3: Israel cries out to Me, “O my God, we are devoted to You.” Israel rejects what is good; An enemy shall pursue him.
4-6: They have made kings, But not with My sanction; They have made officers, But not of My choice. Of their silver and gold They have made themselves images, To their own undoing. He rejects your calf, Samaria! I am furious with them! Will they never be capable of purity? For it was Israel’s doing; It was only made by a joiner, It is not a god. No, the calf of Samaria shall be Reduced to splinters!
8-10: Israel is bewildered; They have now become among the nations Like an unwanted vessel, [Like] a lonely wild ass. For they have gone up to Assyria, Ephraim has courted friendship. And while they are courting among the nations, There I will hold them fast; And they shall begin to diminish in number From the burden of king [and] officers.
11-13: For Ephraim has multiplied altars — for guilt; His altars have redounded to his guilt: The many teachings I wrote for him Have been treated as something alien. When they present sacrifices to Me, It is but flesh for them to eat: The LORD has not accepted them. Behold, He remembers their iniquity, He will punish their sins: Back to Egypt with them!

IV. Outline
1. Israel’s iniquity
2-3. Israel’s hypocrisy
4-6. Israel’s unsanctioned kings, officers, and gods
7. Drought in Israel
8-10. Israel’s miserable state: asking other nations for help
11-13. Ephraim’s sacrifices are not wanted
14. God will destroy Israel’s cities

V. Comment
No comment today. Stay tuned.

VI. Works Used
(see “Commentaries” page)
Collins, John J. “Introduction to the Hebrew Bible,” (Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 2004).
Photo taken from http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/1903/images/1903_MEDIUM.jpg