Hosea 7:16
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
They do not turn to the Most High; they are like a faulty bow. Their leaders will fall by the sword because of their insolent words. For this they will be ridiculed in the land of Egypt.

New Living Translation
They look everywhere except to the Most High. They are as useless as a crooked bow. Their leaders will be killed by their enemies because of their insolence toward me. Then the people of Egypt will laugh at them.

English Standard Version
They return, but not upward; they are like a treacherous bow; their princes shall fall by the sword because of the insolence of their tongue. This shall be their derision in the land of Egypt.

New American Standard Bible
They turn, but not upward, They are like a deceitful bow; Their princes will fall by the sword Because of the insolence of their tongue. This will be their derision in the land of Egypt.

King James Bible
They return, but not to the most High: they are like a deceitful bow: their princes shall fall by the sword for the rage of their tongue: this shall be their derision in the land of Egypt.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
They turn, but not to what is above; they are like a faulty bow. Their leaders will fall by the sword because of the cursing of their tongue. They will be ridiculed for this in the land of Egypt.

International Standard Version
They return—but not to the Most High. They are like a defective weapon. Their princes will fall by the sword because of their raging tongue, and they will be a laughingstock in the land of Egypt."

NET Bible
They turn to Baal; they are like an unreliable bow. Their leaders will fall by the sword because their prayers to Baal have made me angry. So people will disdain them in the land of Egypt.

New Heart English Bible
They return, but not to the Most High. They are like a faulty bow. Their leaders will fall by the sword for the rage of their tongue. This will be their derision in the land of Egypt.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
They don't return to the Most High. They are like a defective bow. Their officials will die in battle because they curse. The people in Egypt will ridicule them for this.

JPS Tanakh 1917
They return, but not upwards; They are become like a deceitful bow; Their princes shall fall by the sword for the rage of their tongue; This shall be their derision in the land of Egypt.

New American Standard 1977
They turn, but not upward,
            They are like a deceitful bow;
            Their princes will fall by the sword
            Because of the insolence of their tongue.
            This will be their derision in the land of Egypt.



Jubilee Bible 2000
They returned, but not to the most High; they were like a deceitful bow; their princes fell by the sword for the arrogance of their tongue; this shall be their derision in the land of Egypt.

King James 2000 Bible
They return, but not to the most High: they are like a treacherous bow: their princes shall fall by the sword for the insolence of their tongue: this shall be their derision in the land of Egypt.

American King James Version
They return, but not to the most High: they are like a deceitful bow: their princes shall fall by the sword for the rage of their tongue: this shall be their derision in the land of Egypt.

American Standard Version
They return, but not to him that is on high; they are like a deceitful bow; their princes shall fall by the sword for the rage of their tongue: this shall be their derision in the land of Egypt.

Douay-Rheims Bible
They returned, that they might be without yoke: they became like a deceitful bow: their princes shall fall by the sword, for the rage of their tongue. This is their derision in the land of Egypt.

Darby Bible Translation
They return, [but] not to the [Most] High: they are like a deceitful bow. Their princes shall fall by the sword for the rage of their tongue: this shall be their derision in the land of Egypt.

English Revised Version
They return, but not to him that is on high; they are like a deceitful bow: their princes shall fall by the sword for the rage of their tongue: this shall be their derision in the land of Egypt.

Webster's Bible Translation
They return, but not to the most High: they are like a deceitful bow: their princes shall fall by the sword for the rage of their tongue: this shall be their derision in the land of Egypt.

World English Bible
They return, but not to the Most High. They are like a faulty bow. Their princes will fall by the sword for the rage of their tongue. This will be their derision in the land of Egypt.

Young's Literal Translation
They turn back -- not to the Most High, They have been as a deceitful bow, Fall by sword do their princes, From the insolence of their tongue, This is their derision in the land of Egypt!

Study Bible
Ephraim's Iniquity
15Although I trained and strengthened their arms, Yet they devise evil against Me. 16They turn, but not upward, They are like a deceitful bow; Their princes will fall by the sword Because of the insolence of their tongue. This will be their derision in the land of Egypt.
Cross References
Psalm 12:3
May the LORD cut off all flattering lips, The tongue that speaks great things;

Psalm 12:4
Who have said, "With our tongue we will prevail; Our lips are our own; who is lord over us?"

Psalm 17:10
They have closed their unfeeling heart, With their mouth they speak proudly.

Psalm 73:9
They have set their mouth against the heavens, And their tongue parades through the earth.

Psalm 78:57
But turned back and acted treacherously like their fathers; They turned aside like a treacherous bow.

Ezekiel 23:32
"Thus says the Lord GOD, 'You will drink your sister's cup, Which is deep and wide. You will be laughed at and held in derision; It contains much.

Daniel 7:25
'He will speak out against the Most High and wear down the saints of the Highest One, and he will intend to make alterations in times and in law; and they will be given into his hand for a time, times, and half a time.

Hosea 9:3
They will not remain in the LORD'S land, But Ephraim will return to Egypt, And in Assyria they will eat unclean food.

Hosea 9:6
For behold, they will go because of destruction; Egypt will gather them up, Memphis will bury them. Weeds will take over their treasures of silver; Thorns will be in their tents.

Hosea 11:5
They will not return to the land of Egypt; But Assyria-- he will be their king Because they refused to return to Me.
Treasury of Scripture

They return, but not to the most High: they are like a deceitful bow: their princes shall fall by the sword for the rage of their tongue: this shall be their derision in the land of Egypt.

return.

Hosea 6:4 O Ephraim, what shall I do to you? O Judah, what shall I do to you? …

Hosea 8:14 For Israel has forgotten his Maker, and builds temples; and Judah …

Hosea 11:7 And my people are bent to backsliding from me: though they called …

Psalm 78:37 For their heart was not right with him, neither were they steadfast …

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

Luke 8:13 They on the rock are they, which, when they hear, receive the word …

Luke 11:24-26 When the unclean spirit is gone out of a man, he walks through dry …

like.

Psalm 78:57 But turned back, and dealt unfaithfully like their fathers: they …

the rage.

Hosea 7:13 Woe to them! for they have fled from me: destruction to them! because …

Psalm 12:4 Who have said, With our tongue will we prevail; our lips are our …

Psalm 52:2 The tongue devises mischiefs; like a sharp razor, working deceitfully.

Psalm 57:4 My soul is among lions: and I lie even among them that are set on …

Psalm 73:9 They set their mouth against the heavens, and their tongue walks …

Isaiah 3:8 For Jerusalem is ruined, and Judah is fallen: because their tongue …

Jeremiah 18:18 Then said they, Come and let us devise devices against Jeremiah; …

Matthew 12:36 But I say to you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they …

James 3:5 Even so the tongue is a little member, and boasts great things. …

2 Peter 2:8 (For that righteous man dwelling among them, in seeing and hearing…

Revelation 13:5 And there was given to him a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies; …

this.

Hosea 8:13 They sacrifice flesh for the sacrifices of my offerings, and eat …

Hosea 9:3,6 They shall not dwell in the LORD's land; but Ephraim shall return …

Ezekiel 23:32 Thus said the Lord GOD; You shall drink of your sister's cup deep …

Ezekiel 36:20 And when they entered to the heathen, where they went, they profaned …

(16) Like a deceitful bow.--Religious observance has the appearance of a bow with the arrow on the string, apparently aimed at some object, but the string being slack, the aim is diverted.

The "raving insolence of their tongue" may mean the boasts that were made of the friendship of King Shebaka of Egypt, who made Israel his tool. In the land of Egypt they would thus become objects of derision. (Comp. Isaiah's warning to his countrymen, Isaiah 30:1-8.)

Verse 16. - They return, but not to the Most High. This verse is closely connected in sense with the preceding. Their God-defying attitude, as described in ver. 15, is represented in ver. 16 allegorically as a deceitful bow, which fails to scud the arrow to the mark; also their unsuccess is represented as exposing them to the derision of Egypt; while the princes who spake so exceeding proudly, and who instigated their ungodliness and consequent wretchedness, would be slain with the sword. This is the drift of the whole verse; its details, however, demand more particular consideration.

1. The word עַל is by some identified in meaning with

(1) the adjective עֶלְיון, equivalent to "the Most High;" by others

(2) it is taken adverbially, and translated "upwards."

(3) The Septuagint does not express it. translating ἀπεστράφησαν εἰς οὐθέν, "They turned aside to that which is not [literally, 'nothing']."

(4) Jerome translates it as is עֹל, were equivalent to "yoke: They returned that they might be without a yoke." Their return, according to Jerome, would be to their pristine condition before the can of Abram, like the other nations, without yoke or knowledge of law.

2. The return spoken of implies that there were junctures at which they seemed disposed to return to religiousness, but ere long they again relapsed into idolatry. They disappointed the high hopes raised, and missed their own high destiny, and thus they resembled a bow, of which the string, losing its elasticity, could not propel the arrow to the object aimed at. Appearing to return to the worship of Jehovah, they turned aside to an idol. Thus in Psalm 78:57, they "turned back and dealt unfaithfully like their fathers: they were turned aside like a deceitful bow."



They return, but not to the most High,.... To Egypt, and not to Jerusalem, and the temple there, and the worship of it; to their idols, and not to him whose name alone is Jehovah, and is the most High all the earth, the God of gods, and Lord of lords, and King of kings; though they made some feint as if they would return, and did begin, and take some steps towards repentance and reformation; but then they presently fell back again, as in Jehu's time, and did not go on to make a thorough reformation; nor returned to God alone, and to his pure worship they pretended to, and ought to have done: or, "not on high, upwards, above" (w); their affections and desires are not after things above; they do not look upwards to God in heaven for help and assistance, but to men and things on earth, on which all their affection and dependence are placed:

they are like a deceitful bow; which misses the mark it is directed to; which being designed to send its arrow one way, causes it to go the reverse; or its arrow returns upon the archer, or drops at his feet; so these people deviated from the law of God, acted contrary to their profession and promises, and relapsed into their former idolatries and impieties, and sunk into earth and earthly things; see Psalm 78:57;

their princes shall fall by the sword: either of their conspirators, as Zachariah, Shallum, Pekahiah, and Pekah; or by the sword of the Assyrians, as Hoshea, and the princes with him, by Shalmaneser;

for the rage of their tongue; their blasphemy against God, his being and providences; his worship, and the place of it; his priests and people that served him, and particularly the prophets he sent unto them to reprove them;

this shall be their derision in the land of Egypt; whither they sent, and called for help; but now, when their princes are slain, and they carried captive into a foreign land, even those friends and allies of theirs shall laugh and mock at them. The Targum is,

"these were their works while they were in the land of Egypt;''

or rather the words may be rendered, "this is their derision, as of old in the land of Egypt" (x); that is, the calves they now worshipped, and to which they ascribed all their good things, were made in imitation of the gods of Egypt, their Apis and Serapis, which were in the form of an ox, and which their fathers derided there; and these were justly to be derided now, and they to be derided for their worship of them, and ascribing all their good things to them; and which would be done when their destruction came upon them.

(w) "non supra", Montanus; "non sursum", De Dieu, Gussetius; "non erecte", Cocceius. (x) "haec, seu quae est subsannatio, sicut olim in terra Aegypti", Schmidt. 16. return, but not to the Most High—or, "to one who is not the Most High," one very different from Him, a stock or a stone. So the Septuagint.

deceitful bow—(Ps 78:57). A bow which, from its faulty construction, shoots wide of the mark. So Israel pretends to seek God, but turns aside to idols.

for the rage of their tongue—their boast of safety from Egyptian aid, and their "lies" (Ho 7:13), whereby they pretended to serve God, while worshipping idols; also their perverse defense for their idolatries and blasphemies against God and His prophets (Ps 73:9; 120:2, 3).

their derision in … Egypt—Their "fall" shall be the subject of "derision" to Egypt, to whom they had applied for help (Ho 9:3, 6; 2Ki 17:4). 7:8-16 Israel was as a cake not turned, half burnt and half dough, none of it fit for use; a mixture of idolatry and of the worship of Jehovah. There were tokens of approaching ruin, as grey hairs are of old age, but they noticed them not. The pride which leads to break the law of God leads to self-flattery. The mercy and grace of God are the only refuge to which obstinate sinners never think of fleeing. Though they may howl forth their terrors in the form of prayers, they seldom cry to God with their hearts. Even their prayers for earthly mercies only seek fuel for their lusts. Their turning from one sect, sentiment, form, or vice, to another, still leaves them far short of Christ and holiness. Such are we by nature. And such shall we prove if left to ourselves. Create in us a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within us.
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