Retribution for Israel’s Sin

Israel is a luxuriant vine;

He produces fruit for himself.

The more his fruit,

The more altars he made;

The [a]richer his land,

The better [b]he made the memorial stones.

Their heart is [c]deceitful;

Now they must suffer for their guilt.

[d]The Lord will break down their altars

And destroy their memorial stones.

Certainly now they will say, “We have no king,

For we do not revere the Lord.

As for the king, what can he do for us?”

They speak mere words,

[e]With worthless oaths they make covenants;

And judgment sprouts like poisonous weeds in the furrows of the field.

The inhabitants of Samaria will fear

For the [f]calf of Beth-aven.

Indeed, its people will mourn for it,

And its idolatrous priests [g]will cry out over it,

Over its glory, since it has left it.

The thing itself will be brought to Assyria

As a gift of tribute to [h]King Jareb;

Ephraim will [i]be seized with shame,

And Israel will be ashamed of its own plan.

Samaria will be destroyed with her king,

Like a twig on the surface of the water.

Also the high places of Aven, the sin of Israel, will be destroyed;

Thorns and thistles will grow on their altars;

Then they will say to the mountains,

“Cover us!” And to the hills, “Fall on us!”

Since the days of Gibeah you have sinned, Israel;

There they stand!

Will the battle against the sons of injustice not overtake them in Gibeah?

10 When it is My desire, I will [j]discipline them;

And the peoples will be gathered against them

When they are bound for their double guilt.

11 Ephraim is a trained heifer that loves to thresh,

[k]And I passed over her lovely neck;

I will harness Ephraim,

Judah will plow, Jacob will [l]harrow for himself.

12 Sow for yourselves, with a view to righteousness;

Harvest in accordance with [m]kindness.

Break up your uncultivated ground,

For it is time to seek the Lord

Until He comes and rains righteousness on you.

13 You have plowed wickedness, you have harvested injustice,

You have eaten the fruit of lies.

Because you have trusted in your way, in your many warriors,

14 An uproar will arise among your people,

And all your fortresses will be destroyed,

As Shalman destroyed Beth-arbel on the day of battle,

When mothers were [n]slaughtered with their children.

15 So it will be done to you at Bethel because of your great wickedness.

At dawn the king of Israel will be completely destroyed.


  1. Hosea 10:1 Lit better
  2. Hosea 10:1 Lit they
  3. Hosea 10:2 Lit slippery; or divided
  4. Hosea 10:2 Lit He
  5. Hosea 10:4 Or Swearing falsely in making a covenant
  6. Hosea 10:5 As in some ancient versions; MT calves
  7. Hosea 10:5 Or who used to rejoice over
  8. Hosea 10:6 Another reading is the great king; or the contentious king
  9. Hosea 10:6 Lit receive shame
  10. Hosea 10:10 Or instruct
  11. Hosea 10:11 Or But I put a yoke on her lovely
  12. Hosea 10:11 I.e., pull a harrow, a farming device
  13. Hosea 10:12 Or loyalty
  14. Hosea 10:14 Lit shattered