Hosea 4:15
Parallel Verses
New International Version
"Though you, Israel, commit adultery, do not let Judah become guilty. "Do not go to Gilgal; do not go up to Beth Aven. And do not swear, 'As surely as the LORD lives!'

New Living Translation
"Though you, Israel, are a prostitute, may Judah avoid such guilt. Do not join the false worship at Gilgal or Beth-aven, even though they take oaths there in the LORD's name.

English Standard Version
Though you play the whore, O Israel, let not Judah become guilty. Enter not into Gilgal, nor go up to Beth-aven, and swear not, “As the LORD lives.”

New American Standard Bible
Though you, Israel, play the harlot, Do not let Judah become guilty; Also do not go to Gilgal, Or go up to Beth-aven And take the oath: "As the LORD lives!"

King James Bible
Though thou, Israel, play the harlot, yet let not Judah offend; and come not ye unto Gilgal, neither go ye up to Bethaven, nor swear, The LORD liveth.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Israel, if you act promiscuously, don't let Judah become guilty! Do not go to Gilgal or make a pilgrimage to Beth-aven, and do not swear an oath: As the LORD lives!

International Standard Version
"Even though you prostitute yourself, Israel— let not Judah incur guilt— don't go to Gilgal, or visit Beth-aven, or swear an oath using the LORD's name.

NET Bible
Although you, O Israel, commit adultery, do not let Judah become guilty! Do not journey to Gilgal! Do not go up to Beth Aven! Do not swear, "As surely as the LORD lives!"

GOD'S WORD® Translation
"Israel, you act like a prostitute. Don't let Judah become guilty too. Don't go to Gilgal. Don't go to Beth Aven. Don't take the oath, 'As the LORD lives....'

Jubilee Bible 2000
Though thou, Israel, play the harlot, yet let not Judah be guilty; and do not come unto Gilgal, neither go up to Bethaven, nor swear, The LORD lives,

King James 2000 Bible
Though you, Israel, play the harlot, yet let not Judah offend; and come not unto Gilgal, neither go up to Bethaven, nor swear, As the LORD lives.

American King James Version
Though you, Israel, play the harlot, yet let not Judah offend; and come not you to Gilgal, neither go you up to Bethaven, nor swear, The LORD lives.

American Standard Version
Though thou, Israel, play the harlot, yet let not Judah offend; and come not ye unto Gilgal, neither go ye up to Beth-aven, nor swear, As Jehovah liveth.

Douay-Rheims Bible
If thou play the harlot, O Israel, at least let not Juda offend: and go ye not into Galgal, and come not up into Bethaven, and do not swear: The Lord liveth.

Darby Bible Translation
Though thou, Israel, play the harlot, let not Judah trespass; and come ye not unto Gilgal, neither go up to Beth-aven, nor swear [As] Jehovah liveth!

English Revised Version
Though thou, Israel, play the harlot, yet let not Judah offend; and come not ye unto Gilgal, neither go ye up to Beth-aven, nor swear, As the LORD liveth.

Webster's Bible Translation
Though thou, Israel, playest the harlot, yet let not Judah offend; and come not ye to Gilgal, neither go ye up to Beth-aven, nor swear, The LORD liveth.

World English Bible
"Though you, Israel, play the prostitute, yet don't let Judah offend; and don't come to Gilgal, neither go up to Beth Aven, nor swear, 'As Yahweh lives.'

Young's Literal Translation
Though a harlot thou art, O Israel, Let not Judah become guilty, And come not ye in to Gilgal, nor go up to Beth-Aven, Nor swear ye, Jehovah liveth.
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

4:12-19 The people consulted images, and not the Divine word. This would lead to disorder and sin. Thus men prepare scourges for themselves, and vice is spread through a people. Let not Judah come near the idolatrous worship of Israel. For Israel was devoted to idols, and must now be let alone. When sinners cast off the easy yoke of Christ, they go on in sin till the Lord saith, Let them alone. Then they receive no more warnings, feel no more convictions: Satan takes full possession of them, and they ripen for destruction. It is a sad and sore judgment for any man to be let alone in sin. Those who are not disturbed in their sin, will be destroyed for their sin. May we be kept from this awful state; for the wrath of God, like a strong tempest, will soon hurry impenitent sinners into ruin.

Pulpit Commentary

Verses 15-17. - In this section the prophet, as if despairing of any improvement or amendment on the part of Israel, still resolutely bent on spiritual whoredom, addresses an earnest warning to Judah. From proximity to those idolatries and debaucheries so prevalent in this northern kingdom, and from the corruption at least of the court in the southern kingdom during the reigns of Joram, Ahaziah, and Ahaz, Judah was in danger; and hence the prophet turned aside, with words of earnest warning, to the sister kingdom not to involve herself in the same or similar guilt. Rashi's brief comment here is, "Let not the children of Judah learn their ways." Verse 15. - And come not ye unto Gilgal, neither go ye up to Beth-avert, nor swear, The Lord liveth. From a solemn warning in general terms, he proceeds to a specific prohibition. The prohibition forbids pilgrimages to places of idol-worship, such as Gilgal and Bethaven; it also forbids a profession of Jehovah-worship to be made by persons inclined to idolatrous practices. Gilgal, now the village of Jiljilia, which had been a school of the prophets in the days of Elijah and Elisha, had, as we may rightly infer from passages in Hoses and Amos, become a seat of idolatrous worship. The Hebrew interpreters confound the Gilgal here referred to with the still more renowned Gilgal between Jericho and the Jordan, where Joshua circumcised the people a second time, and celebrated the Passover, and where, manna failing, the people ate of the old corn of the land. "And why," asks Kimchi, "to Gilgal? Because at Gilgal the sanctuary was at the first when they entered the land; therefore when they went to worship idols they built high places there for the idols. But with respect to the tribe of Judah, what need has it to go to Gilgal and to leave the house of the sanctuary which is in their own cities?" And Beth-el, now Beitin, had become Beth-avon - the house of God a house of idols, after Jeroboam had set up the calf there. Judah was to eschew those places so perilous to purity of worship; also a practice hypocritical in its nature and highly dangerous in its tendency, namely, confessing Jehovah with the lips, and by a solemn act of attestation indicative of adherence to his worship, but belying that confession by complicity in idolatrous practices, like the peoples who "worshipped Jehovah, but served their own gods." Kimchi observes as follows: "For ye engage in strange worship, and yet swear by the Name of Jehovah; this is the way of incensing and despising him."

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

Though thou, Israel, play the harlot, yet let not Judah offend,.... That is, though the Israelites, the people of the ten tribes, committed adultery, both corporeal and spiritual, in their idolatrous worship, as before observed, to which they had been used ever since the times of Jeroboam the first, and were hardened therein, and from which there were little hopes of reforming them; yet let not the men of Judah be guilty of the same crimes, who have as yet retained the pure worship of God among them; where the house of God is, and the priests of the Lord officiate, and sacrifices are offered up to him according to his will, and all other parts of religious service are performed: or the whole seems to be directed to Israel, as an exhortation to them, that though they had given into such abominations, yet should be careful not to offend Judah, or cause them to stumble and fall, and become guilty of the same sins, and so be exposed to the same punishment; and which would be an aggravation of Israel's sin, to draw others into it with them:

and come not ye unto Gilgal, neither go ye up to Bethaven; to worship idols in those places; otherwise it might be lawful to go to them on any civil accounts: Gilgal was upon the borders of the ten tribes, between them and Judah, where Joshua circumcised the Israelites; kept the first passover in the land; and where the ark and tabernacle were for a time; and perhaps for these reasons was chosen for a place of idolatrous worship: Bethaven is the same with Bethel, the name Jacob gave it, signifying the house of God; but when Jeroboam set up one of his calves here, the prophets, by way of contempt, called it Bethaven, the house of iniquity, or the house of an idol; though there was a place called Bethaven near Bethel, and Ai, as Kimchi observes, and as appears from Joshua 7:2, yet Bethel was sometimes so called, as it seems to be here, because of the idolatry in it; and so the Talmudists (u) say, the place called Bethel is now called Bethaven. Now the question is, whether Judah or Israel are here addressed; many interpreters carry it in the former sense, as if the men of Judah were dissuaded from going to these places for worship, when the temple, the proper place of worship, was in their own tribe; but the speech seems rather to be directed to the Israelites, to stop going to these places for worship; for being so near to Judah, they might be the means of ensnaring and drawing them into the same idolatrous practices:

nor swear, the Lord liveth; or swear by the living God, so long as they worshipped idols; for it was not well pleasing to God to have his name used by idolaters, or joined with their idols: especially as they meant their idol when they swore by the Lord.

(u) T. Hieros Avoda Zara, fol. 43. 1.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

15. Though Israel's ten tribes indulge in spiritual harlotry, at least thou, Judah, who hast the legal priesthood, and the temple rites, and Jerusalem, do not follow her bad example.

Gilgal—situated between Jordan and Jericho on the confines of Samaria; once a holy place to Jehovah (Jos 5:10-15; 1Sa 10:8; 15:21); afterwards desecrated by idol-worship (Ho 9:15; 12:11; Am 4:4; 5:5; compare Jud 3:19, Margin).

Beth-aven—that is, "house of vanity" or idols: a name substituted in contempt for Beth-el, "the house of God"; once sacred to Jehovah (Ge 28:17, 19; 35:7), but made by Jeroboam the seat of the worship of the calves (1Ki 12:28-33; 13:1; Jer 48:13; Am 3:14; 7:13). "Go up" refers to the fact that Beth-el was on a hill (Jos 16:1).

nor swear, The Lord liveth—This formula of oath was appointed by God Himself (De 6:13; 10:20; Jer 4:2). It is therefore here forbidden not absolutely, but in conjunction with idolatry and falsehood (Isa 48:1; Eze 20:39; Zep 1:5).

Hosea 4:15 Additional Commentaries
Context
God's Charges against Israel
14I will not punish your daughters when they play the harlot Or your brides when they commit adultery, For the men themselves go apart with harlots And offer sacrifices with temple prostitutes; So the people without understanding are ruined. 15Though you, Israel, play the harlot, Do not let Judah become guilty; Also do not go to Gilgal, Or go up to Beth-aven And take the oath: "As the LORD lives!" 16Since Israel is stubborn Like a stubborn heifer, Can the LORD now pasture them Like a lamb in a large field?…
Cross References
Jeremiah 5:2
Although they say, 'As surely as the LORD lives,' still they are swearing falsely."

Jeremiah 44:26
But hear the word of the LORD, all you Jews living in Egypt: 'I swear by my great name,' says the LORD, 'that no one from Judah living anywhere in Egypt will ever again invoke my name or swear, "As surely as the Sovereign LORD lives."

Hosea 9:15
"Because of all their wickedness in Gilgal, I hated them there. Because of their sinful deeds, I will drive them out of my house. I will no longer love them; all their leaders are rebellious.

Hosea 10:5
The people who live in Samaria fear for the calf-idol of Beth Aven. Its people will mourn over it, and so will its idolatrous priests, those who had rejoiced over its splendor, because it is taken from them into exile.

Hosea 12:11
Is Gilead wicked? Its people are worthless! Do they sacrifice bulls in Gilgal? Their altars will be like piles of stones on a plowed field.

Amos 8:14
Those who swear by the sin of Samaria-- who say, 'As surely as your god lives, Dan,' or, 'As surely as the god of Beersheba lives'-- they will fall, never to rise again."
Treasury of Scripture

Though you, Israel, play the harlot, yet let not Judah offend; and come not you to Gilgal, neither go you up to Bethaven, nor swear, The LORD lives.

play.

Hosea 4:12 My people ask counsel at their stocks, and their staff declares to …

Jeremiah 3:6-10 The LORD said also to me in the days of Josiah the king, Have you …

Ezekiel 23:4-8 And the names of them were Aholah the elder, and Aholibah her sister: …

yet.

Hosea 11:12 Ephraim compasses me about with lies, and the house of Israel with …

2 Kings 17:18,19 Therefore the LORD was very angry with Israel, and removed them out …

Jeremiah 3:10,11 And yet for all this her treacherous sister Judah has not turned …

Luke 12:47,48 And that servant, which knew his lord's will, and prepared not himself, …

Ephesians 5:11 And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but …

Gilgal.

Hosea 9:15 All their wickedness is in Gilgal: for there I hated them: for the …

Hosea 12:11 Is there iniquity in Gilead? surely they are vanity: they sacrifice …

Amos 4:4 Come to Bethel, and transgress; at Gilgal multiply transgression; …

Amos 5:5 But seek not Bethel, nor enter into Gilgal, and pass not to Beersheba: …

Beth-aven.

Hosea 5:8 Blow you the cornet in Gibeah, and the trumpet in Ramah: cry aloud …

Hosea 10:5,8 The inhabitants of Samaria shall fear because of the calves of Bethaven: …

1 Kings 12:28,29 Whereupon the king took counsel, and made two calves of gold, and …

nor.

Isaiah 48:1 Hear you this, O house of Jacob, which are called by the name of …

Jeremiah 5:2 And though they say, The LORD lives; surely they swear falsely.

Ezekiel 20:39 As for you, O house of Israel, thus said the Lord GOD; Go you, serve …

Amos 6:10 And a man's uncle shall take him up, and he that burns him, to bring …

Amos 8:14 They that swear by the sin of Samaria, and say, Your god, O Dan, …

Zephaniah 1:5,6 And them that worship the host of heaven on the housetops; and them …

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OT Prophets: Hosea 4:15 Though you Israel play the prostitute yet (Ho Hs Hos.) Christian Bible Study Resources, Dictionary, Concordance and Search Tools

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