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Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature
(Heb. Hoshe'd, הוֹשֵׁע , deliverance), or "HOSHEA" (as it is more correctly Anglicized in Dent. 32 — 44; 2 Kings 15:30; 2 Kings 17:1; 2 Kings 17:3-4; 2 Kings 17:6; 2 Kings 18:1; 2 Kings 18:9-10; 1 Chronicles 27:20; Nehemiah 10:23; but "Oshea" in Numbers 13:8; Numbers 13:6), the name of several men.
1. HOSHEA or OSHEA (Sept. Αὐσή and Ι᾿ησοῦς,Vulg. Osee and Josue), the original name of JOSHUA (See JOSHUA) (q.v.) Moses's successor (Numbers 13:8; Numbers 13:16; Dent. 32:44).
2. HOSHEA, the son of Azariah, and viceroy of the Ephraimites under David (1 Chronicles 27:20).
3. HOSEA (Sept. Ο᾿σηέ,Vulg. Osee, N.T. ῾Ωσεή, "Osee," Romans 9:25), the son of Beeri (Hosea 1:1-2), and author of the book of prophecies which bears his name. (See PROPHET).
The personal history of the prophet Hosea is so closely interwoven with his book of prophecies that it will be most convenient to consider them together; indeed he principal recorded events of his life were a series of prophetical symbols themselves. The figments of Jewish writers regarding Hosea's parentage need scarcely be mentioned (see J. Fredericus, Exercit. de Hosea et vaticiniis ejus, Lips. 1715). His father has been confounded with Beerah, a prince of the Reubenites (1 Chronicles 5:6). So, too, Beeri has been reckoned a prophet himself, according to the rabbinical notion that the mention of a prophet's father in the introduction to his prophecies is a proof that sire as well as son was endowed with the oracular spirit.
1. Place. — Whether Hosea was a citizen of Israel or Judah has been disputed. The pseudo-Epiphanius and Dorotheus of Tyre speak of him as being born at Belemoth, in the tribe of Issachar (Epiphan. De Vitis Prophet. cap. 11; Doroth. De Proph. cap. 1). Drusius (Critici Sacri, in loc., tom. 5) prefers the reading "Beth-semes," and quotes Jerome, who says, "Osee de tribu Issachar fuit ortus in Beth-semes." But Maurer contends strenuously that he belonged to the kingdom of Judah (Comment. Theol., ed. Rosenmü ller, 2, 391); while Jahn supposes that he exercised his office, not, as Amos did, in Israel, but in the principality of Judah. Maurer appeals to the superscription in Amos as a proof that prophets of Jewish origin were sometimes commissioned to labor in the kingdom of Israel (against the appeal to Amos see Credner, Joel, p. 66; Hitzig, Kurzgef. exeget. Handb. zum A. T. p. 72). Bat with the exception of the case recorded in 1 Kings 13:1 (a case altogether too singular and mysterious to serve as an argument), the instance of Amos is a solitary one, and seems to have been regarded as anomalous by his contemporaries (Amos 7:12). Neither can we assent to the other hypothesis of Maurer, that the mention of the Jewish kings Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah, by Hosea in his superscription is a proof that the seer regarded them as his rightful sovereigns, as monarchs of that territory which gave him birth. Hengstenberg has well replied, that Maurer forgets "the relation in which the pious in Israel generally, and the prophets in particular, stood to the kingdom of Judah.
They considered the whole separation, not only the religious, but also the civil, as an apostasy from God. The dominion of the theocracy was promised to be the throne of David." The lofty Elijah, on a memorable occasion, when a direct and solemn appeal was made to the head of the theocracy, took twelve stones, one for each tribe — a proof that he regarded the nation as one in religious confederation. It was also necessary, for correct chronology, that the kings of both nations should be noted. The other argument of Maurer for Hosea's being a Jew, viz. because his own people are so severely threatened in his reproofs and denunciations, implies a predominance of national prepossession or antipathy in the inspired breast' which is inconsistent with our notions of the piety and patriotism of the prophetic commission (Knobel, Der Prophetismus der Hebraer, 1, 203). We therefore accede to the opinion of De Wette, Rosenmü ller, Hengstenberg, Eichhorn, Manger, Uhland, and Kuinol, that Hosea was an Israelite, a native of that kingdom with whose sins and fates his book is specially and primarily occupied. The name Ephraim occurs in his prophecies about thirty-five times, and Israel with equal frequency, while Judah is not mentioned more than fourteen times. Samaria is frequently spoken of (Hosea 7:1; Hosea 8:5-6; Hosea 10:5; Hosea 10:7; Hosea 14:1), Jerusalem never. All the other localities introduced are connected with the northern kingdom, either as forming part of it, or lying on its borders: Mizpah, Tabor (Hosea 5:1), Gilgal (Hosea 4:15; Hosea 9:15; Hosea 12:12 ), Bethel, called also Bethaven (Hosea 10:15; Hosea 12:5 ; Hosea 4:15; Hosea 5:8; Hosea 10:5; Hosea 10:8); Jezreel (1:4), Gibeah (Hosea 5:8; Hosea 9:9), Ramah (Hosea 5:8), Gilead (Hosea 4:8; Hosea 12:12 ), Shechem (Hosea 6:9), Lebanon (Hosea 14:6-7), Arbela (Hosea 10:14 [?]).
2. Time. — There is no reason, with De Wette, Maurer, and Hitzig, to doubt the genuineness of the present superscription, or, with Rosenmü ller and Jahn, to suppose that it may have been added by a later hand though the last two writers uphold its authenticity. These first and second verses of the prophecy are so closely connected in the structure of the language and style of the narration, that the second verse itself would become suspicious if the first were reckoned a spurious addition. This superscription states that Hosea prophesied during a long and eventful period, commencing in the days of Jeroboam, the son of Joash, extending through the lives of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and concluding in the reign of Hezekiah. As Jeroboam died B.C. 782, and Hezekiah ascended the throne 726, we have the round term of about sixty years, B.C. cir. 784724, as the probable space of time covered by the utterance of these predictions (Maurer, in the Comment. Theol. p. 284, and more lately in his Comment. Gram. Hist. Crit. in Proph. Min. Lips. 1840). The time when they were committed to writing may probably be fixed at about B.C. 725. This long duration of office is not improbable, and the book itself furnishes strong presumptive evidence in support of this chronology. The first prophecy of Hosea foretells the overthrow of Jehu's house; and the menace was fulfilled on the death of Jeroboam, his great-grandson. This prediction must have been uttered during Jeroboam's life. Again, in Hosea 10:14, allusion is made to an expedition of Shalmaneser against Israel; and if it was the first inroad against king Hoshea (2 Kings 17:4), who began to reign in the twelfth year of Ahaz, the event referred to by the prophet as past must have happened close upon the beginning of the government of Hezekiah. These data corroborate the limits assigned in the superscription, and they are capable of verification by reference to the contents of the prophecy.
(a.) As to the beginning, Eichhorn has clearly shown that we cannot allow Hosea much ground in the reign of Jeroboam (823-782).
The book contains descriptions which are utterly inapplicable to the condition of the kingdom of Israel during this reign (2 Kings 14:25 sq.). The pictures of social and political life which Hosea draws so forcibly are rather applicable to the interregnum which followed the death of Jeroboam (781-771), and to the reign of the succeeding kings. The calling in of Egypt and Assyria to the aid of rival factions (Hosea 10:3; Hosea 13:10) has nothing to do with the strong and able government of Jeroboam. Nor is it conceivable that a prophet who had lived long under Jeroboam should have omitted the mention of that monarch's conquests in his enumeration of Jehovah's kindnesses to Israel (Hosea 2:8). It seems, then, almost certain that very few at least of his prophecies were written until after the death of Jeroboam (781).
(b.) As regards the end of his career, the title leaves us in still greater doubt. It merely assures us that he did not prophesy beyond the reign of Hezekiah. But here, again, the contents of the book help us to reduce the vagueness of this indication. In the sixth year of Hezekiah the prophecy of Hosea was fulfilled, and it is very improbable that he should have permitted this triumphant proof of his divine mission to pass unnoticed. He could not, therefore, have lived long into the reign of Hezekiah; and as it does not seem necessary to allow more than a year of each reign to justify his being represented as a contemporary on the one hand of Jeroboam, on the other of Hezekiah, we may suppose that the life, or, rather, the prophetic career of Hosea, extended from 782 to 725, a period of fifty-seven years.
3. Order in the Prophetic Series. — Hosea is the first in order of the twelve minor prophets in the common editions of the Scriptures (Heb., Sept., and Vulg.), an arrangement, however, supposed to have arisen from a misinterpretation of chap. 1:2, which rather denotes that what follows were the first divine communications enjoyed by this particular prophet (see Jerome, Prefiat. in 12 Prophetas; Hengstenberg, Christol. Keith's translated, 2:23; De Wette, Einleitung, § 225; Rosenmü ller, Scholia in Min. Proph. p. 7; Newcome, Pref. to Min. Prophets, p. 45). The probable causes of this location of Hosea may be the thoroughly national character of his oracles, their length, their earnest tone, and vivid representations. The contour of the book has a closer resemblance to the greater prophets than any of the eleven productions by which it is succeeded. (See below.) There is much doubt as to the relative order of the first four or five of the minor prophets: as far as titles go, Amos is Hosea's only rival; but 2 Kings 14:25 goes far to show that they must both yield in priority to Jonah. It is perhaps more important to know that Hosea must have been more or less contemporary with Isaiah, Amos, Jonah, Joel, and Nahum.
4. Circumstance, Scope, and Contents of the Book. — The years of Hosea's public life were dark and melancholy (see Pusey, Minor Prophets, ad loc.). The nation suffered under the evils of that schism which was effected by "Jeroboam, who made Israel to sin." The obligations of law had been relaxed, and the claims of religion disregarded; Baal became the rival of Jehovah, and in the dark recesses of the groves were practiced the impure and murderous rites of heathen deities; peace and prosperity fled the land, which was harassed by foreign invasion and domestic broils; might and murder became the twin sentinels of the throne; alliances were formed with other nations, which brought with them seductions to paganism; captivity and insult were heaped upon Israel by the uncircumcised; the nation was thoroughly debased, and but a fraction of its population maintained its spiritual allegiance (2 Kings 19:18). The death of Jeroboam II was followed by an interregnum of eleven years (B.C. 781- 770), at the end of which his son Zachariah assumed the sovereignty, and was slain by Shallum, after the short space of six months (2 Kings 15:10). In four weeks Shallum was assassinated by Menahem. The assassin, during a disturbed reign of ten years (B.C. 769759), became tributary to the Assyrian Pul. His successor, Pekahiah, wore the crown but two years, when he was murdered by Pekah. Pekah, after swaying his bloody scepter for twenty years (B.C. 757-737), met a similar fate in the conspiracy of Hoshea; Hoshea, the last of the usurpers, after another interregnum of eight years, ascended the throne (B.C. 729), and his administration of nine years ended in the overthrow of his kingdom and the expatriation of his people (2 Kings 17:18; 2 Kings 17:23).
The prophecies of Hosea were directed especially against the country of Israel or Ephraim, whose sin had brought upon it such disasters — prolonged anarchy and final captivity. Their homicides and fornications, their perjury and theft, their idolatry and impiety, are censured and satirized with a faithful severity. Judah is sometimes, indeed, introduced, warned, and admonished. Bishop Horsley (Works, 3, 236) reckons it a mistake to suppose, "that Hosea's prophecies are almost wholly directed against the kingdom of Israel." The bishop describes what he thinks the correct extent of Hosea's commission, but has adduced no proof of his assertion. Any one reading Hosea will at once discover that the oracles having relation to Israel are primary, while the references to Judah are only incidental. In Hosea 1:7, Judah is mentioned in contrast with Israel, to whose condition the symbolic name of the prophet's son is especially applicable. In Hosea 1:11 the future union of the two nations is predicted. The long oracle in chap. 2 has no relation to Judah, nor the symbolic representation in chap. 3. Chap. 4 is severe upon Ephraim, and ends with a very brief exhortation to Judah not to follow his example. In the succeeding chapters allusions to Judah do indeed occasionally occur, when similar sins can be predicated of both branches of the nation. The prophet's mind was intensely interested in the destinies of his own people. The nations around him are unheeded; his prophetic eye beholds the crisis approaching his country, and sees its cantons ravaged, its tribes murdered or enslaved. No wonder that his rebukes were so terrible, his menaces so alarming, that his soul poured forth its strength in an ecstasy of grief and affection. Invitations replete with tenderness and pathos are interspersed with his warnings and expostulations. Now we are startled with a vision of the throne, at first shrouded in darkness, and sending forth lightning, thunders, and voices; but while we gaze, it becomes encircled with a rainbow, which gradually expands till it is lost in that universal brilliancy which itself had originated (chaps. 11 and 14).
5. — The Prophet's Family Relations. — The peculiar mode of instruction which the prophet details in the first and third chapters of his oracles has given rise to many disputed theories. We refer to the command expressed in Hosea 1:2 — "And the Lord said unto Hosea, Go, take unto thee a wife of whoredoms and children of whoredoms," etc.; Hosea 3:1, "Then said the Lord unto me, Go yet, love a woman beloved of her friend, yet an adulteress," etc. Were these real events, the result of divine injunctions literally understood, and as literally fulfilled? Or were these intimations to the prophet only intended to be pictorial illustrations of the apostasy and spiritual folly and unfaithfulness of Israel? The former view, viz. that the prophet actually and literally entered into this impure connubial alliance, was advocated in ancient times by Cyril, Theodoret, Basil, and Augustine; and more recently has been maintained by Mercer, Grotils, Houbigant, Manger, Horsley, Eichhor, Stuck, and others. Fanciful theories are also rife on this subject. Luther supposed the prophet to perform a kind of drama in view of the people, giving his lawful wife and children these mystical appellations. Newcome (Minor Prophets) thinks that a wife of fornication means merely an Israelite, a woman of apostate and adulterous Israel. So Jac. Capellus (In loseam; Opera, p. 683). Hengstenberg supposes the prophet to relate actions which happened, indeed, actually, but not outwardly. Some, with Maimonides (Joreh Nevochim, pt. 2), imagine it to be a nocturnal vision; while others make it wholly an allegory, as the Chaldee Paraphrast Jerome, Drusius, Bauer, Rosenmü ller, Kuino; and Lowth. The view of Hengstenberg (Christology, 2, 11-22), and such as have held his theory (Marki Diatribe de uxore fornicationum accipienda, etc., Lugdun. Batav. 1696), is not materially different from the last to which we have referred (see Libkerk in the Theol. Stud. u. Krit. 1835, p. 647 sq.). Besides other arguments resting on the impurity and loathsomeness of the supposed nuptial contract, it may be argued against the external reality of the event that it must have required several years for its completion, and that the impressiveness of the symbol would therefore be weakened and obliterated.
But this would almost equally apply to the repeated case of Isaiah (Isaiah 8:3; Isaiah 20:3). Other prophetic transactions of a similar nature might be referred to. Jerome (Comment. ad loc.) has referred to Ezekiel 4:4. On the other hand, the total absence of any figurative or symbolical phraseology seems to require the command to be taken in a literal sense, and the immediate addition of the declaration that the order was obeyed serves to confirm this view. It is not to be supposed, as has sometimes been argued, that the prophet was commanded to commit fornication. The divine injunction was to marry — "Scortum aliquis ducere potest sine peccato, scortari non item" (Drusius, Comm. ad loc. in Critici Sacri, tom. 5.). Moreover, if, as the narrative implies, and as the analogy of the restored nation requires, the formerly unchaste woman became a faithful and reformed wife, the entire ground of the objection in a moral point of view vanishes (see Cowles, Minor Prophets, ad loc.). In fact, there were two marriages by the prophet: the first, in Hosea 1:2 of a woman (probably of lewd inclinations already) who became the mother of three children, and was afterwards repudiated for her adultery; and the second, in chap. 3 of a woman at least attached formerly to another, but evidently reformed to a virtuous wife. Both these women represented the Israelitish nation, especially the northern kingdom, which, although unfaithful to Jehovah, should first be punished and then reclaimed by him. Keil, after combating at length (Minor Prophets, introduct. to Hosea) against Kurtz's arguments for the literal view, is obliged to assign the moral objection as the only tenable one. This, however, is a very unsatisfactory mode of disposing of the question, for we are not at liberty thus to explain away the reality of the occurrence simply to evade its difficulties. Moreover, if it be a symbol, what becomes of its force unless based upon a fact? Nor do the prophets receive visions respecting their own personal acts. Finally, the internal suggestion of a wrong act to the prophet's mind as one to be not merely tolerated, but committed, would be equivalent, in point of moral obliquity, to the actual deed itself; at least according to our Savior's rule of guilt in such a matter (Matthew 5:28). This last remark leads us to the true solution of the whole difficulty, which has simply arisen from judging O.T. morals by a Gospel standard, in neglect of the important principle enunciated by Christ himself on the very question of the relations of the sexes (Matthew 19:8). The Mosaic precept (Leviticus 21:14) has no pertinence here, for Hosea was not a priest.
But in whichever way this question may be solved whether these occurrences be regarded as a real and external transaction, or as a piece of spiritual scenery, or only (Witsi Miscell. Sac. p. 90) as an allegorical description it is agreed on all hands that the actions are typical; that they are, as Jerome calls them, sacramenta futurorum. One question which sprang out of the literal view was whether the connection between Hosea and Gomer was marriage or fornication. Another question which followed immediately upon the preceding was "an Dens possit dispensare ut fornicatio sit licita." This latter question was much discussed by the schoolmen, and by the Thomists it was avowed in the affirmative.
Expositors are not at all agreed as to the meaning of the phrase "wife of whoredoms," אֵשֶׁת זְנוּנַים; whether the phrase refers to harlotry before marriage, or unfaithfulness after it. It may afford an easy solution of the difficulty if we look at the antitype in its history and character. Adultery is the appellation of idolatrous apostasy. The Jewish nation were espoused to God. The contract was formed in Sinai; but the Jewish people had prior to this period gone a-whoring. Joshua 24:2-14, "Your fathers dwelt on the other side of the flood in old time, and they served other gods." Comp. Leviticus 17:7, in which it is implied that idolatrous propensities had also developed themselves during the abode in Egypt so that the phrase here employed may signify one devoted to lasciviousness prior to her marriage. Yet this propensity of the Israelites to idolatry had been measurably covert prior to the Exode. On the other hand, none but a female of previously lewd inclinations would be likely to violate her conjugal obligations; and Eichhorn shows that marrying an avowed harlot is not necessarily implied by אֵשֶׁת זְנוּנַים which may very well imply a wife who after marriage becomes an adulteress, even though chaste before. In any case the marriage must be supposed to have been a real contract, or its significance would be lost. Jeremiah 2:2, "I remember thee, the kindness of thy youth, the love of thine espousals, when thou wentest after me in the wilderness, in a land that was not sown." The facts in the case of the Israelitish nation correspond with this symbol of a woman who had been of bad repute before marriage, and who proved a notorious profligate afterwards. יִלְדֵי זְנוּנַים, children of whoredoms, refer most naturally to the two sons and daughter afterwards to be born. They were not the prophet's own, but a spurious offspring palmed upon him by his faithless spouse, as is intimated in the allegory, and they followed the pernicious example of the mother. Spiritual adultery was the debasing sin of Israel. "Non dicitur," observes Manger, "cognovit uxorem, sed simpliciter concepit et peperit." The children are not his. It is said, indeed, in Jeremiah 2:3, "She bare him a son." The word לוֹ is wanting in some MSS. and in some copies of the Sept. If genuine, it only shows the effrontery of the adulteress, and the patience of the husband in receiving and educating as his own a spurious brood. The Israelites who had been received into covenant very soon fell from their first love, and were characterized by insatiable spiritual wantonness yet their Maker, their husband, did not at once divorce them, but exhibited a marvelous long-suffering.
The names of the children being symbolical, the name of the mother has been thought to have a similar signification. Gomer Bath-Diblair may have the symbolic sense of one thoroughly abandoned to sensual delights; גֹּמֶר signifies completion (Ewald, Grannmat. § 228); דַּבְלִיַם בִּתאּ, "daughter of grape-cakes," the dual form being expressive of the mode in which these dainties were baked in double layers. The names of the children are Jezreel, Lo-ruhamah, and Lo-ammi. The prophet explains the meaning of the appellations. It is generally supposed that the names refer to three successive generations of the Israelitish people. Hengstenberg, on the other hand, argues that "wife and children both are the people of Israel: the three names must not be considered separately, but taken together." But as the marriage is first mentioned, and the births of the children are detailed in order, some time elapsing between the events, we rather adhere to the ordinary exposition. Nor is it without reason that the second child is described as a female. The first child, Jezreel, may refer to the first dynasty of Jeroboam I and his successors, which was terminated in the blood of Ahab's house shed by Jehu at Jezreel. The name suggests also the cruel and fraudulent possession of the vineyard of Naboth, "which was in Jezreel," where, too, the woman Jezebel was slain so ignominiously (1 Kings 16:1; 2 Kings 9:21). But since Jehu and his family had become as corrupt as their predecessors, the scenes of Jezreel were again to be enacted; and Jehu's race must perish. Jezreel, the spot referred to by the prophet, is also, according to Jerome, the place where the Assyrian army routed the Israelites. The name of this child associates the past and future, symbolizes past sins, intermediate punishments, and final overthrow. The name of the second child, Lo-ruhamah, "not-pitied," the appellation of a degraded daughter, may refer to the feeble, effeminate period which followed the overthrow of the first dynasty, when Israel became weak and helpless as well as sunk and abandoned. The favor of God was not exhibited to the nation: they were as abject as impious. But the reign of Jeroboam II was prosperous; new energy was infused into the kingdom; gleams of its former prosperity shone upon it. This revival of strength in that generation may be typified by the birth of a third child, a son, Lo- ammi, "not-my-people" (2 Kings 14:25). Yet prosperity did not bring with it a revival of piety; still, although their vigor was recruited, they were not God's people (Lectures on the Jewish Antiquities and Scriptures, by J. G. Palfrey, 2, 422, Boston, 1841). See each name in its place.
6. Division of the Book. — Recent writers, such as Bertholdt, Eichhorn, De Wette, Stuck, Maurer, and Hitzig, have labored much, but in vain, to divide the book of Hosea into separate portions, assigning to each the period at which it was written; but from the want of sufficient data the attempt must rest principally on taste and fancy. A sufficient proof of the correctness of this opinion may be found in the contradictory sections and allotments of the various writers who have engaged in the task. Chapters 1, 2 and 3 evidently form one division: it is next to impossible to separate and distinguish the other chapters. The form and style are very similar throughout all the second portion.
The subdivision of these several parts is a work of greater difficulty: that of Eichhorn will be found to be based upon a highly subtle, though by no means precarious criticism.
(1.) According to him, the first division should be subdivided into three separate poems, each originating in a distinct aim, and each after its own fashion attempting to express the idolatry of Israel by imagery borrowed from the matrimonial relation. The first, and therefore the least elaborate of these, is contained in chap. 3; the second in Hosea 1:2-11; the third in Hosea 1:2-9, and Hosea 2:1-23. These three are progressively elaborate developments of the same reiterated idea. Hosea 1:2-9 is common to the second and third poems, but not repeated with each severally (4, 273 sq.).
(2.) Attempts have been made by Wells, Eichhorn, etc., to subdivide the second part of the book. These divisions are made either according to reigns of contemporary kings, or according to the subject matter of the poem. The former course has been adopted by Wells, who gets five, the latter by Eichhorn, who gets sixteen poems out of this part of the book.
These prophecies — so scattered, so unconnected that bishop Lowth has compared them with the leaves of the Sibyl — were probably collected by Hosea himself towards the end of his career.
8. Style. — The peculiarities of Hosea's style have often been remarked. Jerome says of him, "Commaticus est, et quasi per sententias loquens" (Praef ad XII. Proph.). Augustine thus criticises him: "Osea quanto profundius loquitur, tanto operosius penetratur." His style, says De Wette, "is abrupt, unrounded, and ebullient; his rhythm hard, leaping, and violent. The language is peculiar and difficult" (Einleitung, § 228). Lowth (Prelect. 21) speaks of him as the most difficult and perplexed of the prophets. Bishop Horsley has remarked his peculiar idioms his change of person, anomalies of gender and number, and use of the nominative absolute (Works, vol. 3). Eichhorn's description of his style was probably at the same time meant as an imitation of it (Einleitung, § 555). His discourse is like a garland woven of a multiplicity of flowers: images are woven upon images, comparison wound upon comparison, metaphor strung upon metaphor. He plucks one flower and throws it down that he may directly break off another. Like a bee, he flies from one flowerbed to another, that he may suck his honey from the most varied pieces. It is a natural consequence that his figures sometimes form strings of pearls. Often he is prone to approach to allegory often he sinks down in obscurity" (compare 5:9; 6:3; 7:8; 13:3, 7, 8, 16). Obscure brevity seems to be the characteristic quality of Hosea; and all commentators agree that, "of all the prophets, he is, in point of language, the most obscure and hard to be understood" (Henderson, Minor Prophets, p. 2). Unusual words and forms of connection sometimes occur (De Wette, § 228; see also Davidson, in Horne, 2:945).
9. Citation in the N.T. — Hosea, as a prophet, is expressly quoted by Matthew (Matthew 2:15). The citation is from the first verse of chap. 11 Hosea 6:6 is quoted twice by the same evangelist (Matthew 9:13; Matthew 12:7). Other quotations and references are the following: Luke 23:30; Revelation 6:16; Hosea 10:8; Romans 9:25-26; 1 Peter 2:10; Hosea 1, 10; Hosea 2:23; 1 Corinthians 15:4; Hosea 6:2; Hebrews 13:15; Hosea 14:2. Messianic references are not clearly and prominently developed (Gramberg, Religionsid. 2, 298). This book, however, is not without them, but they lie more in the spirit of its allusions than in the letter. Hosea's Christology appears written, not with ink, but with the spirit of the living God, on the fleshly tables of his heart. The future conversion of his people to the Lord their God, and David their king, their glorious privilege in becoming sons of the living God, the faithfulness of the original promise to Abraham, that the number of his spiritual seed should be as the sand of the sea, are among the oracles whose fulfillment will take place only under the new dispensation.
10. Commentaries. — The following are the exegetical helps on the w-hole book of Hosea separately, and the most important are designated by an asterisk (*) prefixed: Origen, Selecta (in Opp. 3, 438); Ephraem Syrus, Explanatio (in Opp. 5, 234); Remigius Antissod., Commentarius [fragment] (in Mai, Script. Fet. VI, 2:103); Jarchi, Aben-Ezra, and Kimchi, Scholia (ed. with Notes, by Coddaeus, L. B. 1623, 4to; by De Dieu, ib. 1631, 4to; also extracts, with additions, by Von der Hardt, Helmst. 1702, 4to [with a historical Introduction ib. eod.]; and by Mercer. Genesis 1574, 1578; L. B. 1621, 4to; and [including several other minor prophets] Genesis 15, fol.; Giess. 1595, 4to; Gö tting. 1755, 4to); Abrabanei, Comment. (in Lat. with notes, by F. al-Husen, L. B. 1687, 4to); Luther, Enarratio (Vitemb. 1526, 1545; Frcft. 1546, 8vo; also in 0pp. 4, 598; also Senterntie, ib. 684); Capito, Commentarius (Argent. 1528, 8vo); Quinquarboreus, Notae [including Amos, Ruth, and Lam.] (Par. 1556, 4to); Brentz, Commentarius (Hag. 1560, 4to; Tub. 1580, fol.; also in Opp. 4); Box, Commentaria (Coesaraug. 1581, fol.; Ven. 1585, 4to; Lugd. 1587, 8vo; improved edition bv Gyrel, Brix. 1604, 4to), De Castro, Commentaria (Samant. 1586, fol.); Vavassor, Commentarius (in Opp. Vitemb. 4, 348; Jen. 4, 764); Mcatthoeus, Pralectiones (Basil. 1590, 4to); Polansdorf, Analysis (Basil. 1599, 4to; 1601, 8vo); Zanchius, Commentarius (Neost. 1600, 4to; also in Opp. 5); Gesner, Illustratio (Vitemb. 1601, 1614, 8vo); Pareus, Commentarius (Heidelberg, 1605, 1609, 4to); Downame, Lectures [on. ch. 1-4] (London 1608, 4to); Cocceius, Illustratio (in Opp. 11, 591); Krackewitz, Commentarius (Francof. 1619, 4to); Beisner, Commentarius (Vitemb. 1620, 8vo); Rivetus, Commentarius (L. B. 1625, 4to; also in Opp. 2:488); *Burroughs, Lectures [chapter 14 by Sibbs and Reynolds] (London 1643 52, 4 vols. 4to; London 1843, 8vo); Lightfoot, Expositio (in Works, 2, 423); Ursinus, Commentarius (Norib. 1677, 8vo); *Pocock, Commentary (Oxon. 1685, fol.; also in Works, 2, 1); *Seb. Schmid, Commentarius (F. ad MI. 1687, 4to); Biermann, Ontleding (Utrecht, 1702, 4to); Wacke, Expositio (Ratisb. 1711, 8vo); Graff, Predigten (Dresd. 1716, 4to); Kromayer, Specimen, etc. [including Joel and Amos] (Amst. 1730, 8vo); Terne, Erklarung (part 1, Jen. 1740: 2, Eisenb. 1748, 8vo); Klemmius, Note (Tü bing. 1744, 4to) Dathe, Dissertatio [on Aquila's vers. of Ho] (Lips. 1757; also in Opusc. Lips. 1796); Happach, Expositio [on certain passages] (Cobl. 1766 sq., 8vo); Struensee, Uebers. (Frankf. and Lpz. 1769, 8vo); Neale, Commentary (London 1771, 8vo); Michaelis, Chaldea [Jonathan's Targum] (Gö tt. 1775, 4to); Staudlin, Erlaut. (in his Beitr. 1 sq.); Euren, Exanen [of var. readings] (1, Upsal. 1782; 2, ib. 1786; also in Aurivellii, Dissert. p. 594); Schrier, Erlaut. (Dessau, 1782, 8vo); Manger, Commentarius (Campis, 1782, 4to); Pfeiffer. Uebers. (Erlangen, 1785, 8vo); Uhland, Annotationes (in 12 pts. Tü bing. 1785-97, 4to); Volborth, Erklarung (part 1, Gott. 1787, 8vo); Kuinol, Erlauterung (Leips. 1789, 8vo; also in Latin, ibid. 1792, 8vo); Roos, Observationes [on difficult passages] (Erlang. 1780, 4to); Vaupel, Erklar. (Dresden, 1793, 8vo); *Horsley, Notes (London 1801, 1804, 4to; also in Bib. Crit. 2, 134); Philippson, Commentirung [includ. Joel] (Dessau, 1805, 8vo; also in his Israelitische Bibel); Bickel, Erlaut. (Konigsb. 1807, 8vo); Gaab, Dijudicatio [on the vers. of H. in the London Polyglot] (in 2 pts. Tü b. 1812, 4to); Rosenmü ller, Scholia (part 7, vol. 1, 1827, 8vo); Goldwitzer, Anmerk. (Landsh. 1828, 8vo); *Stuck, Commentarius (Lips. 1828, 8vo); Schroder, Erlaut. [vol. 1 of min. proph.. includ. Hosea, Joel, and Amos] (Lpz. 1829, 8vo); De Wette, Ueber d. geschl. Beziehung, etc. (in the Theol. Stud. u. Krit. 1831, p. 807); Mrs. Best, Dialogues (London 1831, 12mo); Redslob, Die Integritat, etc. [of 7, 4-10] (Hamb. 1842, 8vo); *Simson, Erklar. (Hamb. 1851 8So); Drake, Notes [includ. Jonah] (London 1853, 8vo; also Sermons [includ. also Amos], ib. ed. 8vo); Kurtz. Ehe d. H. (Dorpat. 1859, 8vo); Kara, פֵּרוּשׁ (Breslau, 1861, 4to); Winsche, Auslegung [Rabbinical] (Lpz. 1868 sq. 8vo); Bassett, Translation (London, 1869, 8vo). (See PROPHETS, MINOR). 4, 5. HOSHEA (See HOSHEA) (q.v.).
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McClintock, John. Strong, James. Entry for 'Hosea'. Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature. https://www.studylight.org/encyclopedias/eng/tce/h/hosea.html. Harper & Brothers. New York. 1870.