Session 3 | Hosea 2:5-13
Hosea 2:1-13 | God's Poetic Condemnation of Israel
vv. 1-4, see session 2. NOTE: In session 2 I had this section from Hosea 2:1-23. I am not changing to 2:1-13 due to a shift away from condemnation at verse 14.
Verse 5 --
In verses 1-4 Hosea is speaking to his three children. In verse 1 he speaks about the children. In verses 2-3 he speaks to the children about the mother. In verse 4 he speaks to the children about the step-siblings, children of Gomer but not of Hosea. In verse 5 he continues speaking with the step-siblings in view, but the emphasis is on the mother. She has played the harlot and done shamefully. While there may be a real harlotry, the entirety of the book has thus far been symbolic, and idolatries should be in view more than sexual promiscuity.
She went after her lovers, that is, her false gods, and trusted in them for her provisions. Notice the selfishness that is surely meant by the repetition of my, used six times, and mine used once (In middle English, mine is used before a word beginning with a vowel, and thus mine oil would be the same as my oil.)
Verse 6 --
Hosea moves from speaking about the mother to speaking directly to one of the children (Jezreel?). The singular pronoun, thy, is difficult since“Jehovah had spoken of Israel. Now He speaks to her." But this explanation is not convincing, since the sentence continues (...And make a wall...) using the third person, in reference to the mother, to continue the thought.
The idea, it seems to me, is that it is the son's way that is hedged with thorns, protecting him from the mother's running-about.
The phrase make a wall is literally wall a wall. Clearly a figure of speech. Perhaps it is saying, I will make a maze that she shall not find her paths.
In the end, Hosea, (representing God) is going to protect the future by hedging the son and making the mother's way difficult.
Verse 7 --
In verse 7 we have the first hint that something will change in the relationship, and that this change will begin with Gomer. She will someday recognize that then was it better with me than now.
In this verse have some degree of confirmation that it is not Gomer hedged in in verse 6, for here she will still follow after her lovers. We also have confirmation that our interpretation of the words her children in verse 4 is correct. We speculated that these children were not the children of Hosea. Now Gomer pledges to return to my first husband, who is Hosea.
Prophetically, all of this is a revelation that Israel (the wife of the Savior) will not always be faithful. In fact, she will leave her Husband. But in the end, she will recognize her folly and desire to return.
At this point in the poetry, we do not know what the attitude of the Husband will be.
Verse 8 --
Hosea shows his heart, having given his wayward wife her material blessings (compare v. 5), while she was taking those blessings and allowing her lovers to use for Baal. And all the while, she did not know the source of her blessings.
Verse 9 --
After this verse, there is no doubt remaining that Hosea represents God, as He is known in the Hebrew Scriptures (prior to clear understanding of God the Son). Who else could take away corn and wine in the season thereof. Clearly Hosea the Prophet was not able to stop the grain and grape harvest, thus he must be representative of the One who is.
Verse 10 --
“wandering" Israel, we will now take this for granted and speak of the Lord and Israel rather than Hosea and Gomer.
The return of Israel was hinted in verse 7, yet future. Now it seems that the punishment from the Lord will come prior to the return. The Lord will discover her lewdness, with the word discover having the idea of making known“caught and exposed" for her sin, none [of her lovers] shall deliver her out of mine hand. God's possession of Israel is ultimately secure.
Verse 11 --
To bring her back, the Lord will cause all her mirth to cease, and specifically mentions the Jewish holy observances.
These days of sadness seem to be a reference, ultimately, of the tribulation.
Verse 12 --
There will come a day when Israel's lovers will reward her. But God shall destroy the rewards. To make her vines and her fig trees and turn them into a forest is a curse, not a blessing.
Verse 13 --
The phrase I will visit upon her should be understood as I will punish her for. Israel will be punished for the days of Baalim, that is, the celebration of the holidays of Baal.
If there was any doubt left that our interpretation of Hosea as the Lord was correct, this verse removes them, explicitly declaring that the speech is from the Lord.