Hosea 1:2-10

2 When the LORD first spoke through Hose'a, the LORD said to Hose'a, "Go, take to yourself a wife of harlotry and have children of harlotry, for the land commits great harlotry by forsaking the LORD."
3 So he went and took Gomer the daughter of Dibla'im, and she conceived and bore him a son.
4 And the LORD said to him, "Call his name Jezreel; for yet a little while, and I will punish the house of Jehu for the blood of Jezreel, and I will put an end to the kingdom of the house of Israel.
5 And on that day, I will break the bow of Israel in the valley of Jezreel."
6 She conceived again and bore a daughter. And the LORD said to him, "Call her name Not pitied, for I will no more have pity on the house of Israel, to forgive them at all.
7 But I will have pity on the house of Judah, and I will deliver them by the LORD their God; I will not deliver them by bow, nor by sword, nor by war, nor by horses, nor by horsemen."
8 When she had weaned Not pitied, she conceived and bore a son.
9 And the LORD said, "Call his name Not my people, for you are not my people and I am not your God."
10 Yet the number of the people of Israel shall be like the sand of the sea, which can be neither measured nor numbered; and in the place where it was said to them, "You are not my people," it shall be said to them, "Sons of the living God."

Hosea 1:2-10 Meaning and Commentary

INTRODUCTION TO HOSEA

This book, in the Hebrew Bibles, at least in some copies, is called "Sopher Hosea", the Book of Hoses; and, in the Vulgate Latin and Arabic versions, "the Prophecy of Hoses": and, in the Syriac version, "the Prophecy of Hoses the Prophet". It is the first of the twelve lesser prophets, so called, not because they were of less value, credit, and authority, than the other prophets; but because of their smallness in bulk; and which, as Kimchi says, upon the authority of their Rabbins, were put together in one book, that no one of them might be lost, because of their smallness; and Josephus {a} reckons them but as one book; and they are quoted in the New Testament under the name of the Book of the Prophets {b}. This prophet was one of them, and therefore placed here; though, as Kimchi, in his preface to this book, and R. David Ganz {c}, observe, his prophecy was before the prophecy of Isaiah; and yet he was not the first of these minor prophets, as to order of time; not only Jonah, but Joel and Amos, were before him; and so they are placed by some writers; according to Mr. Whiston {d}, he began to prophesy about the year of the world 3196 A.M. and 808 B.C. Mr. Bedford {e} places him in 804 B.C. His name is the same with Joshua and Jesus, and signifies a saviour; and he was not only, as all the true prophets of the Lord and faithful ministers of the word are, the means and instruments in the hand of God of saving people; but he was a type of Christ the Saviour, as well as prophesied concerning him, and salvation by him. Of his parentage, and the time of his prophesying, see Ho 1:1, by which it appears that he lived in several reigns, and to a very great age. He chiefly prophesied against the ten tribes of Israel; reproved them for their sins; exhorted them to repentance; threatened them with destruction in case of impenitence; and comforted the truly godly with the promise of the Messiah, and of the happy state of the church in the latter day. His style, is short and concise; in some places sententious, and without connection, obscure and difficult of interpretation; and in others very pathetic and moving. Of the divine inspiration and authority of this book there is no room to doubt; since passages out of it are quoted and referred to by Christ and his apostles; by Christ himself, \Mt 9:13 12:7 6:6 2:15 11:1 Ro 9:25,26 1:10 2:23 1Co 15:55 13:14\ 1Pe 2:10, 2:23 There are some things said of the descent, death, and burial of this prophet, not to be depended on. Pseudo Epiphanius {f} and Isidorus {g} say he was of the tribe of Issachar, and born in Belomoth or Bethlemoth; and that he died in peace, and was buried in his own country; but, according to a tradition of the Jews {h}, he died in Babylon, and was buried in Tzapheth, a city in upper Galilee; but all this is uncertain, and not very probable, and is of no importance to be known.

{a} Contr. Apion. l. 1. c. 8. {b} Acts vii. 42. {c} Tzemach David, fol. 12. 2. {d} Chronological Tables, cent. 7. {e} Scripture Chronology, B. 6. ch. 2. p. 645. {f} De Prophet. Vit. &c. c. 11. {g} De Vita & Mort. Sanct. c. 41.

\\INTRODUCTION TO HOSEA 1\\

After the general inscription of the book, in which the author, penman, and time of this prophecy, are expressed, Ho 1:1, the people of Israel are reproved for their idolatry, under the representation of a harlot the prophet is bid to marry, which he is said to do, Ho 1:2,3, and their ruin and destruction are foretold in the names of the children he had by her, and by what is said on the occasion of the birth of each, Ho 1:4-6,8,9, but mercy and salvation are promised to Judah, Ho 1:7 and the chapter is concluded with a glorious prophecy of the conversion of the Gentiles, and the calling of the Jews in the latter day; and of the union of Judah and Israel under one Head and Saviour, Christ; and of the greatness and glory of that day, Ho 1:10,11.

the same with Joshua and Jesus, and signifies a saviour; he was in some things a type of Christ the Saviour, and prophesied of him, and salvation by him; and was the instrument and means of saving men, as all true prophets were, and faithful ministers of the word are: to him the word of the Lord, revealing his mind and will, was brought by the Spirit of God, and impressed upon his mind; and it was committed to him to be delivered unto others. This is the general title of the whole book, showing the divine original and authority of it:

\\the son of Beeri\\; which is added to distinguish him from another of the same name; and perhaps his father's name was famous in Israel, and therefore mentioned. The Jews have a rule, that where a prophet's father's name is mentioned, it shows that he was the son of a prophet; but this is not to be depended upon; and some of them say that this is the same with Beerah, a prince of the Reubenites, who was carried captive by Tiglathpileser king of Assyria, 1Ch 5:6, but the name is different; nor does the chronology seem so well to agree with him; and especially he cannot be the father of Hosea, if he was of the tribe of Issachar, as some have affirmed:

\\in the days of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah, kings of Judah, and\\ \\in the days of Jeroboam the son of Joash, king of Israel\\; from whence it appears that Hosea prophesied long, and lived to a great age; for from the last year of Jeroboam, which was the fifteenth of Uzziah, to the first of Hezekiah, must be sixty nine years; for Jeroboam reigned forty one years, and in the twenty seventh of his reign began Uzziah or Azariah to reign over Judah, and he reigned fifty two years, 2Ki 14:23 2Ki 15:1,2, so that Uzziah reigned thirty seven years after the death of Jeroboam, through which time Hosea prophesied; Jotham after him reigned sixteen years, and so many reigned Ahaz, 2Ki 15:23, 16:2, so that without reckoning any part, either of Jeroboam's reign, or Hezekiah's, he must prophesy sixty nine years, and, no doubt, did upwards of seventy, very probably eighty, the Jews say ninety; and allowing him to be twenty four or five years of age when he begun to prophesy, or only twenty (for it is certain he was at an age fit to marry, as appears by the prophecy), he: must live to be upwards of a hundred years; and in all probability he lived to see not only part of Israel carried captive by Tiglathpileser, which is certain; but the entire destruction of the ten tribes by Shalmaneser, which he prophesied of. Jeroboam king of Israel is mentioned last, though prior to these kings of Judah; because Hosea's prophecy is chiefly against Israel, and began in his reign, when they were in a flourishing condition. It appears from hence that Isaiah, Amos, and Micah, were contemporary with him; see \Isa 1:1 Am 1:1 Mic 1:1\, within this compass of time Hosea prophesied lived Lycurgus the famous lawgiver of the Lacedemonians, and Hesiod the Greek poet; and Rome began to be built.

{h} Shalsheleth Hakabala, fol. 12. 1.

30054-Ho1.2

Hosea 1:2-10 In-Context

1 The word of the LORD that came to Hose'a the son of Be-e'ri, in the days of Uzzi'ah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezeki'ah, kings of Judah, and in the days of Jerobo'am the son of Jo'ash, king of Israel.
2 When the LORD first spoke through Hose'a, the LORD said to Hose'a, "Go, take to yourself a wife of harlotry and have children of harlotry, for the land commits great harlotry by forsaking the LORD."
3 So he went and took Gomer the daughter of Dibla'im, and she conceived and bore him a son.
4 And the LORD said to him, "Call his name Jezreel; for yet a little while, and I will punish the house of Jehu for the blood of Jezreel, and I will put an end to the kingdom of the house of Israel.
5 And on that day, I will break the bow of Israel in the valley of Jezreel."
6 She conceived again and bore a daughter. And the LORD said to him, "Call her name Not pitied, for I will no more have pity on the house of Israel, to forgive them at all.
7 But I will have pity on the house of Judah, and I will deliver them by the LORD their God; I will not deliver them by bow, nor by sword, nor by war, nor by horses, nor by horsemen."
8 When she had weaned Not pitied, she conceived and bore a son.
9 And the LORD said, "Call his name Not my people, for you are not my people and I am not your God."
10 Yet the number of the people of Israel shall be like the sand of the sea, which can be neither measured nor numbered; and in the place where it was said to them, "You are not my people," it shall be said to them, "Sons of the living God."
11 And the people of Judah and the people of Israel shall be gathered together, and they shall appoint for themselves one head; and they shall go up from the land, for great shall be the day of Jezreel.
Revised Standard Version of the Bible, copyright 1952 [2nd edition, 1971] by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.