Hosea 7:10

10. And the pride of Israel testifieth to his face: and they do not return to the LORD their God, nor seek him for all this.

10. Et testificabitur (vel, testificata est) superbia Israelis ad faciem ejus, et non reversi sunt ad Jehovam Deum suum, et non quaesierunt eum in omnibus his.


The Prophet now confirms his previous doctrine, and speaks generally, that the pride of Israel shall bear testimony to him to his face, or shall humble him to his face. The word hne, one, means, in Hebrew, "to testify," and often, also, "to humble," or "to afflict," as it was stated in the fifth chapter; and the words of the Prophet are now the same, and both senses are appropriate. I do not, however, make much of this, for the design of the Prophet is clear; what he means is, that God had so openly chastised the Israelites, that they must have perceived his hand, except they were blind indeed, and that, being at the same time warned, they ought to have suppliantly humbled themselves. Whether then we read, "to testify" or "to humble," the sense will be the same, and the design of the Prophet will appear to be the same. "The pride, then, of Israel will humble him to his face," or, "the pride of Israel will testify to his face:" for the Prophet means, that however fiercely the Israelites might rise up against God, and be uncourteous to his Prophets and however perversely they might reject all teaching, and also excuse their own sins, yet all this would avail them nothing, since they were so cast down by their pride, that the Lord regarded them as convicted as much so as if their crime had been proved by many witnesses, and their mask now taken away; in short, there was no longer any doubt: this is what the Prophet means.

The pride, then, of Israel testifies, or, humbles him to his face; that is, though Israel had appeared hitherto inflexible against all admonitions, against all punishments, they were yet held as convicted; and, at the same time, they return not, he says, to their God, and seek him not for all these things. We now perceive what I have said, that the previous complaint respecting the diabolical perverseness which so reigned in the people is here confirmed, so that their salvation was now past hope. And he says that they returned not to Jehovah their God; for they were running constantly after their idols, as we have before seen; yea, they were possessed with that inordinate zeal of which the Prophet speaks in the beginning of the chapter; but they returned not to Jehovah; they were wholly taken up with the multitude of their deities, and at the same time had no regard for God.

And when he says, their God, he conveys a strong reprobation; for God had manifested himself to them; yea, he had made himself plainly known to them by his law. That they then did not return to him, was not simply through ignorance or error; but through a diabolical madness, as if they wished of their own accord and deliberately to perish. God then calls himself here the God of Israel, not for honour's sake, but that he might the more expose their ingratitude, and enhance their perfidiousness, because they had fallen away from him, and would not seek him.

What he means, when he says, For all these things, is, that every kind of remedy had been tried, and hence that their disease was wholly incurable. When we can do nothing in one way, we often try another. Now God had not tried in one way only to bring Israel back to himself, but he had tried all remedies. When no good followed, what was to be said, but the people were lost, and past all hope? This then is what the Prophet means here. It now follows --