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Hosea: Chapter 14

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1

Return, O Israel, to the LORD your God, for you have stumbled because of your iniquity. 2 Take words with you and return to the LORD; say to him, “Take away all guilt; accept that which is good, and we will offer the fruit f Or among brothers of our lips. 3 Assyria shall not save us; we will not ride upon horses; we will say no more, ‘Our God,’ to the work of our hands. In you the orphan finds mercy.”

4

I will heal their disloyalty; I will love them freely, for my anger has turned from them. 5 I will be like the dew to Israel; he shall blossom like the lily, he shall strike root like the forests of Lebanon. a Ch 14.1 in Heb 6 His shoots shall spread out; his beauty shall be like the olive tree, and his fragrance like that of Lebanon. 7 They shall again live beneath my b Gk Syr: Heb bulls shadow, they shall flourish as a garden; c Cn: Heb like Lebanon they shall blossom like the vine, their fragrance shall be like the wine of Lebanon.

8

O Ephraim, what have I d Heb his to do with idols? It is I who answer and look after you. e Cn: Heb they shall grow grain I am like an evergreen cypress; your faithfulness f Or What more has Ephraim comes from me. 9 Those who are wise understand these things; those who are discerning know them. For the ways of the LORD are right, and the upright walk in them, but transgressors stumble in them.

Notes:

d Or among brothers

e Ch 14.1 in Heb

f Gk Syr: Heb bulls

a Cn: Heb like Lebanon

b Heb his

c Cn: Heb they shall grow grain

d Or What more has Ephraim

Text Commentary view alone
Commentary spanning earlier chapters

4.1–14.9 : The prophetic speeches of Hosea indict Israel for unfaithfulness and announce the divine judgment, while offering hope of eventual restoration.

The boundaries between individual speech units in the remainder of the book are unclear. This may in part reflect the style of the prophet and may in part be due to later editorial rearrangement.

12.2–14.9 : Rebellion and restoration.

Another major division in the book (like 4.1–12.1 ), which begins with the announcement of an indictment and ends with an oracle of hope.

14.1–8 : A final plea for repentance and a vision of restoration.

2–3 :

Take words, i.e., take these words: The prophet coaches Israel in repentance.

3 :

Mercy or “pity,” the same root as in Lo‐ruhamah/Ruhamah ( 1.6; 2.1 ).

6 :

This fragrance is of the aromatic Lebanese cedar forest; in the next verse, of Lebanese scented wine.

7–8 :

My shadow, more common is the poetic image of the “shade” under God's wings (Ps 17.8; 36.8 ); uniquely here, God's shade is that of a great tree.

14.9 : A postscript in the style of wisdom literature.

For the first half of the verse, cf. Ps 107.43; Jer 9.12 ; for the second, Prov 10.29 .

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