Darby's Bible Synopsis
Ephraim feedeth on wind, and followeth after the east wind: he daily increaseth lies and desolation; and they do make a covenant with the Assyrians, and oil is carried into Egypt.
The Spirit presents another aspect of the relationship of Israel with God. He would punish Ephraim, and the sins of Judah should be remembered. But He reminds them, that there was a time when Jacob could wrestle with his God, and make supplication to Him, and prevail; that afterwards He found him in Bethel, and there God, even Jehovah, spake to him, and revealed to him His name, which, in fact, He had not done in Peniel. Take notice here of the way in which God enters into all the details of His moral relationship with Israel, in order that the force, the meaning, and the righteousness of the "Lo-ruhamah," which He pronounces on His people, may be understood. His love for them at first, His tender care, the manner in which He had already been requited at Baal-peor, the horrible iniquity of Gibeah now renewed, their corruption, their idolatry, their refusal to hearken, all is recounted; and finally, the way in which Jacob had formerly succeeded in turning away wrath, and how God had then revealed Himself to him. Now, the name which He had proclaimed on that occasion was His memorial for ever. Let them then return unto God, and wait on Him continually. But no; all is corruption, and Ephraim will not even confess his sin. He who had brought them up out of Egypt would make them dwell again in tents without a country. God had constantly spoken to them by His prophets, but the iniquity was there. Israel had already been poor-a fugitive and a wanderer. And God had interposed in sovereignty by a messenger of deliverance, when there was no covenant in force on which the people could reckon to deliver them.
The LORD hath also a controversy with Judah, and will punish Jacob according to his ways; according to his doings will he recompense him.
He took his brother by the heel in the womb, and by his strength he had power with God:
Yea, he had power over the angel, and prevailed: he wept, and made supplication unto him: he found him in Bethel, and there he spake with us;
Even the LORD God of hosts; the LORD is his memorial.
Therefore turn thou to thy God: keep mercy and judgment, and wait on thy God continually.
He is a merchant, the balances of deceit are in his hand: he loveth to oppress.
And Ephraim said, Yet I am become rich, I have found me out substance: in all my labours they shall find none iniquity in me that were sin.
And I that am the LORD thy God from the land of Egypt will yet make thee to dwell in tabernacles, as in the days of the solemn feast.
I have also spoken by the prophets, and I have multiplied visions, and used similitudes, by the ministry of the prophets.
Is there iniquity in Gilead? surely they are vanity: they sacrifice bullocks in Gilgal; yea, their altars are as heaps in the furrows of the fields.
And Jacob fled into the country of Syria, and Israel served for a wife, and for a wife he kept sheep.
And by a prophet the LORD brought Israel out of Egypt, and by a prophet was he preserved.
Ephraim provoked him to anger most bitterly: therefore shall he leave his blood upon him, and his reproach shall his Lord return unto him.