Hosea 4
Holman Christian Standard Bible

God’s Case against Israel

1Hear the word of the LORD,a people of Israel,

for the LORD has a caseb

against the inhabitants of the land:

There is no truth,c no faithful love,d

and no knowledge of Gode in the land!

2Cursing,f lying,g murder,h stealing,i

and adulteryj are rampant;

one act of bloodshed follows another.k

3For this reason the land mourns,l

and everyone who lives in it languishes,

along with the wild animalsm and the birds of the sky;

even the fish of the sea disappear.n

4But let no one dispute;o let no one argue,

for My case is against you priests.p, q, r

5You will stumble by day;s

the prophet will also stumble with you by night.

And I will destroy your mother.t

6My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.u

Because you have rejected knowledge,v

I will reject youw from serving as My priest.

Since you have forgotten the law of your God,x

I will also forget your sons.

7The more they multiplied,y

the more they sinned against Me.

Iz will change their honoraa into disgrace.ab

8They feed on the sinac of My people;ad

they have an appetite for their transgressions.ae

9The same judgment will happen

to both people and priests.af

I will punish them for their waysag

and repay them for their deeds.

10They will eat but not be satisfied;ah

they will be promiscuousai but not multiply.

For they have abandoned their devotion to the LORD.aj

11Promiscuity,ak wine, and new wine

take away one’s understanding.al

12My people consult their wooden idols,am

and their divining rods inform them.

For a spirit of promiscuity leads them astray;an

they act promiscuouslyao

in disobedience toap their God.

13They sacrifice on the mountaintops,aq

and they burn offerings on the hills,ar

and under oaks, poplars, and terebinths,as

because their shade is pleasant.

And so your daughters act promiscuously

and your daughters-in-law commit adultery.

14I will not punish your daughters

when they act promiscuously

or your daughters-in-law

when they commit adultery,

for the men themselves go off with prostitutesat

and make sacrifices with cult prostitutes.au

People without discernment are doomed.av

Warnings for Israel and Judah

15Israel, if you act promiscuously,

don’t let Judah become guilty!

Do not go to Gilgalaw

or make a pilgrimage to Beth-aven,ax, ay

and do not swear an oath: As the LORD lives!az

16For Israel is as obstinate as a stubborn cow.ba

Can the LORD now shepherd them

like a lamb in an open meadow?bb

17Ephraim is attached to idols;bc

leave him alone!bd

18When their drinking is over,

they turn to promiscuity.

Israel’s leadersbe fervently love disgrace.bf

19A wind with its wings will carry them off,bg, bh

and they will be ashamed of their sacrifices.


Footnotes:
a. 4:1 Hs 5:1
b. 4:1 Hs 12:2; Mc 6:2
c. 4:1 Is 59:4; Jr 7:28
d. 4:1 Hs 6:6
e. 4:1 Hs 5:4
f. 4:2 Hs 10:4
g. 4:2 Hs 7:3; 10:13; 11:12
h. 4:2 Hs 6:9
i. 4:2 Hs 7:1
j. 4:2 Hs 7:4
k. 4:2 Hs 6:8; 12:14
l. 4:3 Is 24:4; 33:9
m. 4:3 Jr 4:25
n. 4:3 Gn 1:20-25
o. 4:4 Ezk 3:26; Am 5:10,13
p. 4:4 Text emended; MT reads argue, and your people are like those contending with a priest
q. 4:4 Hb obscure
r. 4:4 Dt 17:12-13
s. 4:5 Ezk 14:3; Hs 5:5
t. 4:5 Hs 2:2,5
u. 4:6 Is 5:13
v. 4:6 Mal 2:7-8
w. 4:6 Zch 11:8-9,15-17
x. 4:6 Hs 2:13; 8:14; 13:6
y. 4:7 Hs 10:1; 13:6
z. 4:7 Alt Hb tradition, Syr, Tg read They
aa. 4:7 Ancient Jewish tradition reads My honor
ab. 4:7 Hab 2:16
ac. 4:8 Or sin offerings
ad. 4:8 Hs 10:13
ae. 4:8 Is 56:11; Mc 3:11
af. 4:9 Is 24:2; Jr 5:31
ag. 4:9 Hs 8:13; 9:9
ah. 4:10 Lv 26:26; Is 65:13; Mc 6:14
ai. 4:10 Hs 7:4
aj. 4:10 Hs 9:17
ak. 4:11 Hs 5:4
al. 4:11 Is 5:12; 28:7
am. 4:12 Is 44:19; Jr 2:27
an. 4:12 Hs 5:4
ao. 4:12 Hs 9:1
ap. 4:12 Lit promiscuously from under
aq. 4:13 Jr 3:6
ar. 4:13 Hs 2:13; 11:2
as. 4:13 Jr 2:20
at. 4:14 Hs 4:18; 7:4
au. 4:14 Dt 23:17
av. 4:14 Hs 5:4
aw. 4:15 Hs 9:15; 12:1
ax. 4:15 = House of Wickedness
ay. 4:15 1Kg 12:28-29; Hs 5:8; 10:5,8
az. 4:15 Jr 5:2; 44:26
ba. 4:16 Ps 78:8
bb. 4:16 Is 5:17; 7:25
bc. 4:17 Hs 13:2
bd. 4:17 Ps 81:12; Hs 4:4
be. 4:18 Lit Her shields ; Ps 47:9; 89:18
bf. 4:18 Hb obscure
bg. 4:19 Lit wind will bind it in its wings
bh. 4:19 Hs 12:1; 13:5
Hosea 3
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