Keil and Delitzsch Commentary - Hosea 4:6 - 4:6

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Keil and Delitzsch Commentary - Hosea 4:6 - 4:6

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This thought is carried out still further in the second strophe, Hos 4:6-10. Hos 4:6. “My nation is destroyed for lack of knowledge; for thou, the knowledge hast thou rejected, and so do I reject thee from being a priest to me. Thou didst forget the law of thy God; thy sons will I also forget.” The speaker is Jehovah: my nation, that is to say, the nation of Jehovah. This nation perishes for lack of the knowledge of God and His salvation. Hadda‛ath (the knowledge) with the definite article points back to da‛ath Elōhı̄m (knowledge of God) in Hos 4:1. This knowledge Israel might have drawn from the law, in which God had revealed His counsel and will (Deu 30:15), but it would not. It rejected the knowledge and forgot the law of its God, and would be rejected and forgotten by God in consequence. In 'attâh (thou) it is not the priests who are addressed - the custodians of the law and promoters of divine knowledge in the nation - but the whole nation of the ten tribes which adhered to the image-worship set up by Jeroboam, with its illegal priesthood (1Ki 12:26-33), in spite of all the divine threats and judgments, through which one dynasty after another was destroyed, and would not desist from this sin of Jeroboam. The Lord would therefore reject it from being priest, i.e., would deprive it of the privilege of being a priestly nation (Exo 19:6), would strip it of the privilege of being a priestly nation (Exo 19:6), would strip it of its priestly rank, and make it like the heathen. According to Olshausen (Heb. Gram. p. 179), the anomalous form אמאסאךָ is only a copyist's error for אֶמְאָסְךָ; but Ewald (§247, e) regards it as an Aramaean pausal form. “Thy sons,” the children of the national community, regarded as a mother, are the individual members of the nation.