Keil and Delitzsch Commentary - Hosea 5:5 - 5:5

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Keil and Delitzsch Commentary - Hosea 5:5 - 5:5

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“And the pride of Ephraim will testify against its face, and Israel and Ephraim will stumble in their guilt; Judah has also stumbled with them.” As the meaning “to answer,” to bear witness against a person, is well established in the case of עָנָה בְ (cf. Num 35:30; Deu 19:18, and Isa 3:9), and עָנָה בְפָנִים also occurs in Job 16:8 in this sense, we must retain the same meaning here, as Jerome and others have done. And there is the more reason for this, because the explanation based upon the lxx, καὶ ταπεινωθήσεται ἡ ὕβρις, “the haughtiness of Israel will be humbled,” can hardly be reconciled with בְפָנָיו. “The pride of Israel,” moreover, is not the haughtiness of Israel, but that of which Israel is proud, or rather the glory of Israel. We might understand by this the flourishing condition of the kingdom, after Amo 6:8; but it would be only by its decay that this would bear witness against the sin of Israel, so that “the glory of Israel” would stand for “the decay of that glory,” which would be extremely improbable. We must therefore explain “the glory of Israel” here and in Hos 7:10 in accordance with Amo 8:7, i.e., we must understand it as referring to Jehovah, who is Israel's eminence and glory; in which case we obtain the following very appropriate thought: They know not Jehovah, they do not concern themselves about Him; therefore He Himself will bear witness by judgments, by the destruction of their false glory (cf. Hos 2:10-14), against the face of Israel, i.e., bear witness to their face. This thought occurs without ambiguity in Hos 7:10. Israel will stumble in its sin, i.e., will fall and perish (as in Hos 4:5). Judah also falls with Israel, because it has participated in Israel's sin (Hos 4:15).