With cords of man I do draw them, With thick cords of love, And I am to them as a raiser up of a yoke on their jaws, And I incline unto him -- I feed him.
Hosea 11:4 Additional TranslationsClarke's Commentary on the Bible
Salomo ben Melech thus explains the middle part of the verse, which is somewhat obscure: "I was to them at their desire as they that have compassion on a heifer, lest she be overworked in ploughing; and that lift up the yoke from off her neck, and rest it upon her cheek that she may not still draw, but rest from her labor an hour or two in the day."
But Israel - The Septuagint, Syriac, Aquila, Theodotion, and Vulgate, read וישראל veyisrael, But Israel, adding the conjunction, which being rendered as an adversative, sets the opposition in a stronger light.
Doth not know - The same ancient versions agree in adding Me, which very properly answers, and indeed is almost necessarily required to answer, the words possessor and lord preceding. Ισραηλ δε ΜΕ ουκ εγνω; Sept. "Israel autem me non cognovit," Vulg. Ισραηλ δε ΜΟΥ ουκ εγνω; Aquil., Theod. The testimony of so scrupulous an interpreter as Aquila is of great weight in this case. And both his and Theodotion's rendering is such as shows plainly that they did not add the word ΜΟΥ to help out the sense, for it only embarrasses it. It also clearly determines what was the original reading in the old copies from which they translated. It could not be ידעני yedani, which most obviously answers to the version of the Septuagint and Vulgate, for it does not accord with that of Aquila and Theodotion. The version of these latter interpreters, however injudicious, clearly ascertains both the phrase, and the order of the words of the original Hebrew; it was ישראל אותי לא ידע veyisrael othi lo yada. The word אותי othi has been lost out of the text. The very same phrase is used by Jeremiah, Jeremiah 4:22, עמי אותי לא ידעו ammi othi lo yadau. And the order of the words must have been as above represented; for they have joined ישראל yisrael, with אותי othi, as in regimine; they could not have taken it in this sense, Israel meus non cognovit, had either this phrase or the order of the words been different. I have endeavored to set this matter in a clear light, as it is the first example of a whole word lost out of the text, of which the reader will find many other plain examples in the course of these notes. But Rosenmuller contends that this is unnecessary, as the passage may be translated, "Israel knows nothing: my people have no understanding." The Septuagint, Syriac, and Vulgate, read ועמי veammi, "and my people;" and so likewise sixteen MSS. of Kennicott, and fourteen of De Rossi.
Hosea 11:4I drew them with cords of a man - This is a reference to leading strings, one end of which is held by the child, the other by the nurse, by which the little one, feeling some support, and gaining confidence, endeavors to walk. God, their heavenly Father, made use of every means and method to teach them to walk in the right and only safe path; for, as the Targum says, "As beloved children are drawn I drew them by the strength of love."
That take of the yoke on their jaws - I did every thing that mercy could suggest, and justice permit, to make their duty their delight and profit. There appears to be here an illusion to the moving and pulling forward the collar or yoke of beasts which have been hard at work, to let in the cool air between it and their neck, so as to refresh them, and prevent that heat, which with the sweat would scald their necks, and take off not only the hair, but the skin. I have often done this at the land ends, in ploughing, when at the turnings the cattle were permitted a few moments to draw their breath after the hard pull that terminated the furrow at either end of the field: -
And I laid meat unto them - Giving them at the same time a bite of grass or hay, to encourage them to go on afresh. The metaphor is strong and expressive; and he who ever had or saw the management of cattle in the plough or cart must admire it. Thus God acted with the people on whose necks was the yoke of his law. How many privileges, advantages, and comforts did he mingle with his precepts, to make them at once a righteous and happy people!
Treasury of Scripture Knowledge
Songs 1:4 Draw me, we will run after you: the king has brought me into his chambers: we will be glad and rejoice in you...
Isaiah 63:9 In all their affliction he was afflicted, and the angel of his presence saved them: in his love and in his pity he redeemed them...
John 6:44 No man can come to me, except the Father which has sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.
John 12:32 And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men to me.
2 Corinthians 5:14 For the love of Christ constrains us; because we thus judge, that if one died for all, then were all dead:
2 Samuel 7:14 I will be his father, and he shall be my son. If he commit iniquity, I will chasten him with the rod of men...
Leviticus 26:13 I am the LORD your God, which brought you forth out of the land of Egypt, that you should not be their slaves...
take off. Heb. lift up. and I laid.
Hosea 2:8 For she did not know that I gave her corn, and wine, and oil, and multiplied her silver and gold, which they prepared for Baal.
Psalm 78:23-25 Though he had commanded the clouds from above, and opened the doors of heaven...
Psalm 105:40 The people asked, and he brought quails, and satisfied them with the bread of heaven.
John 6:32-58 Then Jesus said to them, Truly, truly, I say to you, Moses gave you not that bread from heaven...
Hosea 11:4 Parallel CommentariesBands Bent Bonds Caused Compassion Cords Drew Fed Feed Food Gently Human Jaws Led Love Meat Mouths Neck Necks Ties YokeBands Bent Bonds Caused Compassion Cords Drew Fed Feed Food Gently Human Jaws Led Love Meat Mouths Neck Necks Ties YokeTHE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica®.
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