These chapters constitute the third and final prophetic speech in the book of Hosea.
Once more into the prophetic breach of covenant lawsuit, scholars.
God doesn’t approve one bit of Israel’s dealings with Egypt and Assyria.
A central theme in this speech is the history of God’s dealings with Israel through his prophets, from Moses through the judges and the line of kings. It’s God’s way of saying, “Don’t say I didn’t warn you.”
How can they worship Baal when God is the one who’s protected them all these years?
He fed and watered them in the desert, but once life got lush, they abandoned him.
They’re deluded if they think their kings can save them. They don’t have the sense to repent in time to save themselves from destruction.
Everyone in Samaria will die by the sword, even pregnant women with their bellies ripped open.
Change of Heart
In other news, God won’t take revenge after all. In fact, he’ll tell Israel exactly what to say in order the repair their relationship.
They’ll wonder whatever were they thinking running around with that nobody, Assyria.
God tells them to forget about sacrifices and worship him with words. (Big change.)
God will take them back with love and won’t be angry any more.
Israel will once again flourish like flowers and cedars and realize that only by turning to God will he be fruitful.
Hosea adds: Pay attention to these words if you know what’s good for you.