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The destruction of Israel (13:1-16)
Ephraim prided itself that it was the leading tribe in Israel and that the other tribes did as Ephraim told them. Ephraim must therefore bear the responsibility for the development of Baal worship in Israel. As the morning dew quickly vanishes with the rising of the sun, so Ephraim, and all the other tribes with it, will soon disappear (13:1-3).
God saved the Israelites from slavery, looked after them in the wilderness and gave them a land, but in their prosperity they forgot him (4-6). God will now destroy them. There will be no escape (7-8). Israel’s original desire for a king was a rejection of God. The people will now find that the king will not give them the security they hoped for. The monarchy, as well as the nation, is doomed (9-11; cf. 1 Samuel 10:19; 1 Samuel 12:13-15).
Israel has been piling up sin for years, and the punishment for that sin is now to fall upon it in the form of national destruction. There is hope of salvation and new life if the nation responds to God, but it stubbornly refuses to. It is like an unborn child which, when the time for birth has come, refuses to come out of its mother’s womb, and so dies (12-13). There can be no more mercy. Death is certain (14). As a hot wind from the desert can destroy the countryside, so the Assyrian army will destroy Israel. It will show no mercy (15-16).
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Flemming, Donald C. "Commentary on Hosea 13". "Fleming's Bridgeway Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/
the Sixth Week after Easter