Hosea 8:2
Israel shall cry to me, My God, we know you.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(2) Should be rendered, To me they cry, My God, we know Thee, we Israel.

Hosea 8:2-4. Israel shall cry unto me — Namely, when calamities come upon them, My God, we know thee — Thou art our God in covenant with us, and we make profession of thy name, and own thee for the only true God: see Matthew 7:21-22. Israel hath cast off the thing that is good — They have not walked agreeably to their profession, but have cast off obedience to my laws. This is a declaration, that all the worship of Israel, or their crying, My God, was vain, since their actions were wicked, or they had cast off what was good. Christ has made a declaration to the same purpose, to warn us of falling into the like error, in the passage above referred to. They have set up kings — Made a defection from the house of David, formed themselves into a distinct kingdom, and chosen what kings and governors they pleased, without ever asking my advice or consent. Not by me — Not by my warrant or order. Shallum, and Menahem, and Pekah, usurped the kingdom by murder and treason, 2 Kings 15:13-14; 2 Kings 15:25, not by any declaration of God’s will, as Jeroboam and Jehu did; nor were any of the kings between Jeroboam and Jehu, nor any after the posterity of Jehu, made by God’s appointment. They have made princes and I knew it not — They have appointed judges, or magistrates, such as I approved not of, and had no hand in raising up to that dignity. Of their silver, &c., they have made themselves idols — They have abused their wealth to idolatry, which will be the occasion of their destruction: see Hosea 2:8.8:1-4 When Israel was hard pressed, they would claim protection from God, but this would be disregarded. What stead will it stand in to say, My God, I know thee, if we cannot say, My God, I love thee, serve thee, and cleave to thee only?Israel shall cry unto Me, My God, we know Thee - Or, according to the order in the Hebrew, "To Me shall they cry, we know Thee, Israel," i. e., "we, Israel," Thy people, "know Thee." It is the same plea which our Lord says that He shall reject in the Day of Judgment. "Many shall say unto Me, in that Day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Thy Name, and in Thy Name cast out devils, and in Thy Name done many wonderful works" Matthew 7:22. In like way, when our Lord came in the flesh, they said of God the Father, He is our God. But our Lord appealed to their own consciences; "It is My Father who honoreth Me, of whom ye say, He is our God, but ye have not known Him" John 8:54. So Isaiah, when speaking of his own times, prophesied of those of our Lord also; "This people draweth nigh unto Me, with their mouth and honoreth Me with their lips; but their heart is far from Me" Matthew 15:8; Isaiah 29:13. "God says, that they shall urge this as a proof, that they know God, and as an argument to move God to have respect unto them, namely, that they are the seed of Jacob, who was called Israel, because he prevailed with God, and they were called by his name." As though they said, "we, Thy Israel, know thee." It was all hypocrisy, the cry of mere fear, not of love; from where God, using their own name of Israel which they had pleaded, answers the plea, declaring what "Israel" had become. 2. My God, we know thee—the singular, "My," is used distributively, each one so addressing God. They, in their hour of need, plead their knowledge of God as the covenant-people, while in their acts they acknowledge Him not (compare Mt 7:21, 22; Tit 1:16; also Isa 29:13; Jer 7:4). The Hebrew joins "Israel," not as English Version, with "shall cry," but "We, Israel, know thee"; God denies the claim thus urged on the ground of their descent from Israel. Israel, the ten tribes,

shall cry in deep distress; when the Assyrian rangeth over their country, when Samaria is besieged, they will cry out aloud, but hypocritically; they will roar, but not pray.

My God; then they will look to the ancient alliance and league between their fathers and me.

We know thee, an only Saviour; be ours, for we are thine. Thus in hypocrisy will they carry it. Israel shall cry unto me, my God, we know thee. In their distress they shall cry to the Lord to help them, and have mercy on them, as they used to do when in trouble, Isaiah 26:16; when the eagle is come upon them, and just ready to devour them; when Samaria is besieged with file Assyrian army, their king taken prisoner, and they just ready to fall into the hands of the enemy, then they shall cry to God, though in a hypocritical manner; own him to be the true God, and claim their interest in him, and pretend knowledge of him, and acquaintance with him; though they have not served and worshipped him, but idols, and that for hundreds of years; like others who profess to know God, but in works deny him, Titus 1:16. Israel is the last word in the verse, and occasions different versions: "they shall cry unto me"; these transgressors of the covenant and the law, these hypocrites, shall pray to God in trouble, saying, "my God, we Israel", or Israelites, "know thee"; or, "we know thee who are Israel" (x); and to this sense is the Targum,

"in every time that distress comes upon them, they pray before me, and say, now we know that we have no God besides thee; redeem us, for we are thy people Israel;''

why may they not be rendered thus, "they shall cry unto me; my God, we know thee, Israel" shall say? Castalio renders them to this sense, "my God", say they; but "we know thee, Israel"; we, the three Persons in the Trinity, Father, Son, and Spirit, we know thy hypocrisy and wickedness, that it is only outwardly and hypocritically, and not sincerely, that thou criest unto and callest upon God.

(x) "ad me clamant, Deus mi, novimus te nos Israel", De Dieu; "clamabunt ad me, O Deus meus, nos Israelitae cognoscimus te", Tigurine version, so Tarnovius; "mihi vocant, Deus mi, cognovimus, vel agnoscimus te Israel", vel "nos lsrael, seu Israelitae", Schmidt.

Israel shall {b} cry unto me, My God, we know thee.

(b) They will cry like hypocrites, but not from the heart, as their deeds declare.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
2. Israel shall cry …] Rather, Unto me they will (then) cry, My God, we—Israel—know thee. When the punishment comes, they will cry aloud to Jehovah, and lay stress upon their belonging to Him. ‘Israel’ is mentioned, as the title of honour (the kunya, comp. the commentators on Isaiah 44:5), given by Jehovah, which was the outward sign of His mystic connexion with His worshippers. The speech of the Israelites is the counterpart of that of Jehovah in Isaiah 43:1, ‘I have called thee by name; thou art mine.’ (The Septuagint and the Peshito, however, omit ‘Israel.’) ‘My God’ seems used distributively, each Israelite professes to feel his individual relation to the national God.Verse 2. - Israel shall cry unto me, My God, we know thee. The more literal as well as more exact rendering is, to me wilt they cry, My God, we know thee, we Israel! Notwithstanding their provocation, their unfaithfulness to the covenant of God, and their disobedience to the Law, they appeal unitedly and severally to God in the day of their distress, and urge two pleas - their knowledge of God, or acknowledgment of him as the true God; and their high position as his people. Thus the Chaldee paraphrase has: "As often as calamity comes upon them they pray and say before me, Now we acknowledge that we have no God beside thee; deliver us, because we are thy people Israel." As to the construction, either "Israel" is in apposition to anachnu, the subject of the verb, or there is a transposition. Thus Rashi: "We must transpose the words, and explain, ' To me, cries Israel, My God, we know thee; '" so also Kimchi and Aben Ezra. The former says, "' Israel ' which comes after, should be before, after לייו, and many inversions of this kind occur in Scripture, as Ezekiel 39:11 and Psalm 141:10." The word "Israel" is omitted by the LXX. and Syriac, and in many manuscripts of Kennicott and De Rossi. The decisive wars - Daniel 11:10-12

Here the suffix in בּנו refers to the king of the north, who in Daniel 11:9 was the person acting. Thus all interpreters with the exception of Kranichfeld, who understand בנו of the son of the Egyptian prince, according to which this verse ought to speak of the hostilities sought, in the wantonness of his own mind, of the king of the south against the king of the north. But this interpretation of Kranichfeld is shattered, not to speak of other verbal reasons which oppose it, against the contents of Daniel 11:11. The rage of the king of the south, and his going to war against the king of the north, supposes that the latter had given rise to this rage by an assault. Besides, the description given in Daniel 11:10 is much too grand to be capable of being referred to hostility exercised in mere wantonness. For such conflicts we do not assemble a multitude of powerful armies, and, when these powerful hosts penetrate into the fortresses of the enemy's country, then find that for the victorious invaders there is wanting the occasion of becoming exasperated for new warfare. The Kethiv בנו is rightly interpreted by the Masoretes as plur., which the following verbs demand, while the singulars ועבר ושׁטף וּבא (shall come, and overflow, and pass through) are explained from the circumstance that the hosts are viewed unitedly in המון (multitude). בּוא בּא expresses the unrestrained coming or pressing forward, while the verbs ועבר שׁטף, reminding us of Isaiah 8:8, describe pictorially the overflowing of the land by the masses of the hostile army. וישׁב (jussive, denoting the divine guidance), and shall return, expresses the repetition of the deluge of the land by the hosts marching back out of it after the עבּר, the march through the land, - not the new arming for war (Hv.), but renewed entrance into the region of the enemy, whereby they carry on the war מעזּה עד, to the fortress of the king of the south, corresponding with the הצּפון מלך בּמעוז in Daniel 11:7 (to the fortress of the king of the north). יתגּרוּ signifies properly to stir up to war, i.e., to arm, then to engage in war. In the first member of the verse it has the former, and in the last the latter meaning. The violent pressing forward of the adversary will greatly embitter the king of the south, fill him with the greatest anger, so that he will go out to make war with him. The adversary marshals a great multitude of combatants; but these shall be given into his hand, into the hand of the king of the south. רב המון העמיד (he raised up a great multitude) the context requires us to refer to the king of the north. בּידו נתּן, v. Leng., Maurer, and Hitzig understand of the acceptance of the command over the army - contrary to the usage of the words, which mean, to give into the hand equals to deliver up, cf. 1 Kings 20:28; Daniel 1:2; Daniel 8:12-13, and is contrary also to the context. The marshalling of the host supposes certainly the power to direct it, so that it needs not then for the first time to be given into the power of him who marshalled it. The expression also, "to give into his hand," as meaning "to place under his command," is not found in Scripture. To this is to be added, that the article in ההמון refers back to רב המון. But if ההמון is the host assembled by the king of the north, then it can only be given up into the hand of the enemy, i.e., the king of the south, and thus the suffix in בּידו can only refer to him. The statements in Daniel 11:12 are in harmony with this, so far as they confessedly speak of the king of the south.

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