Hosea 4:2

2 By swearing, and lying, and killing, and stealing, and committing adultery, they break out, and blood[a] toucheth blood.

Hosea 4:2 Meaning and Commentary

Hosea 4:2

By swearing, and lying
Which some join together, and make but one sin of it, false swearing, so Jarchi and Kimchi; but that swearing itself signifies, as the Targum interprets it; for it not only takes in all cursing and imprecations, profane oaths, and taking the name of God in vain, and swearing by the creatures, but may chiefly design perjury; which, though one kind of "lying", may be distinguished from it here; the latter intending "lying" in common, which the devil is the father of, mankind are incident unto, and which is abominable to God, whether in civil or in religious things: "and killing, and stealing and committing adultery"; murders, thefts, and adulteries, were very common with them; sins against the sixth, eighth, and seventh commandments: they break out;
through all the restraints of the laws of God and man, like an unruly horse that breaks his bridle and runs away; or like wild beasts, that break down the fences and enclosures about them, and break out, and get away; or like a torrent of water, that breaks down its dams and banks, and overflows the meadows and plains; such a flood and deluge of sin abounded in the nation. Some render it, "they thieve" F15; or act the part of thieves and robbers: and the Targum,

``they beget sons of their neighbours' wives;''
and so Abarbinel interprets it of breaking through the hedge of another man's wife; but these sins are observed before: and blood toucheth blood;
which some understand of sins in general, so called, because filthy and abominable; and of the addition and multiplication of them, there being as it were heaps of them, or rather a chain of them linked together. So the Targum, ``and they add sins to sins.'' Others interpret it of impure mixtures, of incestuous lusts, or marriages contrary to the ties of blood, and laws of consanguinity, ( Leviticus 18:6 ) ( Ezekiel 22:11 ) , or rather it is to be understood of the great effusion of blood, and frequency of murders; so that there was scarce any interval between them, but a continued series of them. Some think respect is had to the frequent slaughter of their kings; Zachariah the son of Jeroboam was slain by Shallum, when he had reigned but six months; and Shallum was slain by Menahem when he had reigned but one month; and this Menahem was a murderer of many, smote many places, and ripped up the women with child; Pekahiah his son was killed by Pekah the son of Remaliah, and he again by Hoshea, ( 2 Kings 15:8 2 Kings 15:10 2 Kings 15:13 2 Kings 15:14 2 Kings 15:16 2 Kings 15:25 2 Kings 15:30 ) .

F15 (wurp) "latrocinantur, [vel] latrones agunt", Schmidt

Hosea 4:2 In-Context

1 Hear the word of the LORD, ye children of Israel: for the LORD hath a controversy with the inhabitants of the land, because there is no truth, nor mercy, nor knowledge of God in the land.
2 By swearing, and lying, and killing, and stealing, and committing adultery, they break out, and blood toucheth blood.
3 Therefore shall the land mourn, and every one that dwelleth therein shall languish, with the beasts of the field, and with the fowls of heaven; yea, the fishes of the sea also shall be taken away.
4 Yet let no man strive, nor reprove another: for thy people are as they that strive with the priest.
5 Therefore shalt thou fall in the day, and the prophet also shall fall with thee in the night, and I will destroy thy mother.

Footnotes 1

The King James Version is in the public domain.