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west*. 11. They shall hurry like the sparrow from Egypt, and like the dove from Assyria†: and I will settle them in their own houses, saith the Lord. 12. Ephraim hath compassed me about with treachery, and the house of Israel with deceit. But Judah shall yet obtain dominion ‡ with God, and shall be established with the Holy Ones
This prophecy relates to the restoration of the whole house of Israel, for both Judah and Ephraim are particularized in it. Long as the captivity of Judah has been, longer yet as the captivity of Ephraim has been; yet God will never forget or abandon his people Israel. In due season they shall surely walk after the Lord, notwithstanding they now seem to be forsaken by him. When that season arrives, twice will he exalt his voice, and roar aloud. At the first roaring, children shall hurry from the west: the converted Jews shall be rapidly brought back from the western regions of Europe by the instrumentality of the great maritime power. At the second roaring, other children shall hurry like the sparrow from Egypt, and like the dove from Assyria: the converted Israelites shall return from the countries of their dispersion, and particularly from the land of Assyria whither they were originally carried, and in the neighbourhood
(the children) in the other case mean part of the natural Israel. Mr. Lowth understands the passage as I do.
Shall hurry from the west.] Isaiah similarly predicts the return of Judah. "They shall lift up their voice; they shall exult in the majesty of the Lord; they shall shout from the west. Wherefore glorify ye the Lord by Urim, the name of the Lord God of Israel in the isles of the sea." (Isaiah xxiv. 14,15.) And again: "Surely the isles shall wait for me, and the ships of Tarshish first, to bring thy sons from far." Isaiah lx. 9.
They shall hurry-- from Egypt---and Assyria.] Thus Isaiah foretells the restoration of those that were lost in Assyria and were outcasts in the land of Egypt. See Isaiah xxvii. 12, 13. and compare xi. 15, 16.---xix. 23, 24, 25. and Zechar. x. 10, 11 See Mr. Lowth in loc.
+ Obtain dominion.] "A promissory allusion to a final restoration of the Jewish monarchy." Bp. Horsley in loc.
Established with the Holy Ones.] "The word established may signify either the constancy of Judah's fidelity to the Holy Ones; or the firmness of the support which he shall receive from them. The Holy Ones, the Holy Trinity. By the use of this plural word the prophecy clearly points to the conversion of the Jewish people to the Christian faith. Even the Jewish expositors, R. Tanchum and Kimchi, understand this plural word in this place as signifying God." Bp. Horsley in loc.
of which they are now lost. Thus, notwithstanding their former treachery and deceit, God will. settle them in their own houses, and establish them with the Holy Ones.
The restoration and conversion of Israel-His rejection of
2. Take Say unto
Hosea xiv. 1. Return, O Israel *, unto the Lord thy God, for thou hast fallen by thine iniquity. with you words, and return unto the Lord. him, Take away all iniquity, and accept good. So will we render thee bullocks, our own lips t. 3. The Assyrian shall not save us; we will mount no cavalry, and no more we will say, Our gods are ye, to the work of our own hands: inasmuch as with thee the fatherless obtaineth fond protection. 4. I will restore their conversion. I will love them gratuitously; for mine anger is departed from me. 5. I will be as the dew unto Israel; he shall blossom as the lily, and strike his roots like the forest trees of Lebanon. 6. His suckers shall spread farther and farther; and he shall be like the olive tree, for his beauty; and a smell shall be in him like the smell of Lebanon. 7. They shall return. Sitting under his shadow, they shall abound in corn. They shall germinate like the vine, and be famous as the wine of Lebanon. 8. Ephraim! What have I to do any more with idols ||?
*Return, O Israel.] "The whole family of Israel, in both its branches, is addressed." Bp. Horsley in loc.
† Bullocks, our own lips.] Lips are here put for praises and thanksgivings uttered by the lips. This kind of metonymy, which puts the cause or instrument for the effect, is very frequent with the sacred writers. By calling vocal devotions bullocks, the phraseology shews, that this form of supplication is prepared for those times, when animal sacrifices will be abolished, and
prayer and thanksgiving will be the only offering." Bp. Horsley in loc
+ Their conversion.] "That is, their converted race. I take conversion as a collective noun for converts; like captivity, for the captives, and dispersion, for the dispersed. The converted nation God promises to restore to his favour, and to a situation of prosperity and splendour” Bp. Horsley in loc.
Ephraim---idols.] "An exultation of Jehovah over idols. Ephraim ! Even he is returned to me. I have no more contest to carry on with idols. They are completely overthrown. My sole Godhead is confessed." Bp. Horsley in loc.
I have answered him.
like a green fir-tree.
And I will make him flourish From me thy fruit is supplied. 9. Who is wise? for he will consider these things; intelligent? for he shall comprehend them. For straight and even are the ways of the Lord, and the justified shall proceed in them, but revolters shall stumble therein †.
Hosea concludes his prophecies with declaring in the strongest terms, that God will surely restore the converted
Who is wise?] This passage exactly tallies with what Daniel says relative to the same awful period. See Dan. xii. 10.
† Revolters shall stumble therein.] "To the incorrigible enemies of God the very scheme of mercy itself will be a cause of error, confusion, and ruin. The word yw expresses a degree and enormity of disobedience far beyond any thing contained in the notion of transgressors, prevaricators, or any other denomination of guilt, by which the word is rendered in our English Bible. It denotes rebels, in the highest sense of the word; such as rise in opposition to the authority of a sovereign, because he is by right a sovereign; and in a religious sense, such as wilfully, with premeditation, disobey God from hatred of his authority---yw is a bold avowed rebellion, or revolt, disowning the authority of the sovereign, and having for its end the overthrow of his sovereignty. But it will be said; Who ever was so mad, as to avow or entertain a design or hope of overthrowing the sovereignty of God? I say, Numbers in all ages of the world. Atheists, Deists, Idolaters, and secular powers that persecute revealed religion. Many of these indeed retain the name of a God, or Gods, as signifying, in their conceptions, an Animus mundi, or physical powers in different parts of the material world. But they all disown and oppose the God of the Old Testament, and the New; the God of Jews, and of Christians. And they endeavour what they can to overthrow his authority, by uniting their efforts (in vain, but much in earnest) for the extirpation of the Christian religion. If those, who, in the present day, are most forward, and most powerful, in this work of impiety, affect a partiality for the Jews; it is, because they hope to draw them in to take a part in the demolition of Christianity and, when that is effected, they expect to find in Judaism an easy conquest. Whether any part, or what part, of the Jews may be drawn into this snare of hell, we presume not to predict. We hope, that the great majority of the race will have too much discretion to be duped. This at least we know, that ultimately the whole race of Israel, of the natural Israel, will return and seek Jehovah their God, and David their king. They shall return, and, sitting under his shadow, they will flourish. The head of the faction leagued against us and them, against our God and theirs, is the devil. If I am not much mistaken, he is more than once named in Scripture yD; the participle Benoni Kal being used as an appellative in the singular number, to denote The rebel, The apostate. And the same participle in the plural, which is the word here, denotes the followers of that chief, Rebels, Revolters." Bp. Horsley in loc.
Let the reader, keeping in his mind this criticism of Bp. Horsley, compare what I say relative to the revolters here spoken of, with the apocalyptic account of the instigator of the revived Roman beast, the secret promoters of the Antichristian confederacy, and the avowed object of that confederacy when formed; with St. Paul's description of the man of sin, with Ezekiel's representation of the mystic prince of Tyre; with Daniel's relation of the fate which is about to
race of Israel, Ephraim no less than Judah, and bless them in their own land with a wonderful degree of plenty and prosperity. Since by the mention of Ephraim it is evident that this prediction yet remains to be accomplished, for Ephraim has never yet been restored, we must necessarily conclude, that the Assyrian, here mentioned, is the antitypical Assyrian, or Antichrist now become the last head of the mystic Babylon. Here then we have an oblique, but sufficiently plain, allusion to the attempt which certain unconverted Jews will make to effect their return by the assistance of the Antichristian confederacy, and to their subsequent penitence and conversion.
In the last verse Hosea observes, that, plain as the ways of the Lord are, revolters will stumble in them, but that the justified shall proceed in them. By these revolters I understand those incorrigible enemies of God, who, falling from the apostasy of Popery to the yet blacker apostasy of Infidelity, and afterwards for mere ambitiously political purposes restoring the form of a corrupt religion which in their hearts they disbelieve *, shall at length league themselves in a misnamed religious war with the Romish befall the feet of the image and the Roman beast with his little horn, and with his strongly drawn character of the wilful king; and lastly with St. John's concise, though pointed, definition of Antichrist. He will then, I think, have but little reason to doubt, who are intended by these notorious revolters at the era of the restoration of the Jews. See Rev. xii. 3, 9, 17.---xiii. 1, 2, 4, 6.--xvi. 13-16. xix. 11--21.---2 Thessal. ii. 3---12.---Ezek. xxviii. 2---10.---Dan. ii. 34, 35, 44, 45.---vii. 8---11, 20---27.---xi. 36---45.---xii. 1, 7, 10.---and 1 John ii. 22.
* Mr. Yorke finishes his description of the farcial celebration of the re-establishment of Popery by General Buonaparte, in the following remarkable words. "These are the principal incidents which occured at Notre Dame. I leave you to form a just idea of the emotions of those present, whether they be considered as Christians or not. The far greater part of the Senate, the Legislative Body, the Tribunate, and the Generals, being avowed atheists, and notorious for the murders, thefts, and atrocities, which they had perpetrated; with their Chief Magistrate, who had worshipped at the altar of atheism some years before in Paris, who afterwards knelt down before the Pope at Rome, and embraced the religion of Mohammed in Africa; assembled together in one place to adore a god in whom they had no faith, and to profess a religion which they despised, merely that they might be enabled to preserve their usurped authority over the people, and to retain their places; is an occurrence in the history of pious fraud, not to be met with since the days of Judas Iscariot. I may safely venture to affirm, that, with the exception of the Bishops (if they may be excepted), there was not a single person in the cathedral, who quitted this religious mockery with a sentiment of piety excited in his breast, nor one, who did not perfectly see through the whole object of the ceremony." Letters from France in 1802. Vol. I. p. 269, 270.
man of sin, and attain the summit of deliberate impiety by openly opposing the counsels of the Most High respecting his ancient people the Jews.
Irruption of Antichrist into Palestine-His destruction there-General effusion of the Holy Spirit--A description of the overthrow of the confederated nations at the period of the restoration of Judah.
Joel i. 1. The word of the Lord that came unto Joel, the son of Pethuel. 2. Hear this, ye old men, and give all ye inhabitants of the land. Hath this been in your days, or even in the days of your fathers? 3. Tell ye your children of it, and let your children tell their children, and their children another generation. 4. That, which the palmer-worm hath left, hath the locust eaten; and that, which the locust hath left, hath the canker-worm eaten; and that, which the canker-worm hath left, hath the caterpillar eaten-6. For a nation is come up upon my land, strong, and without number, whose teeth are the teeth of a lion, and he hath the cheek-teeth of a great lion. 7. He hath laid my vine waste, and barked my fig-tree: he hath made it clean bare, and cast it away; the branches thereof are made white
14. Sanctify ye a fast, call a solemn assembly; gather the elders, and all the inhabitants of the land into the house of the Lord your God, and cry unto the Lord. 15. Alas for the day! for the day of the Lord is at hand, and as a destruction from the Almighty shall it come
ii. 1. Blow ye the trumpet in Zion, and sound an alarm in my holy mountain: let all the inhabitants of the land tremble: for the day of the Lord cometh, for it is nigh at hand; 2. A day of darkness and of gloominess, a day of clouds and of thick darkness, as the morning spread upon the mountains: a great people and a strong: there hath not been ever the like, neither shall be any more after it, even to the years of many generations. 3. A fire devoureth before them; and behind them a