Fertility Cult Festivals Have Intoxicated Israel
9:1 O Israel, do not rejoice jubilantly1 like the nations,
for you are unfaithful2 to your God.
You love to receive a prostitute's wages3
on all the floors where you thresh your grain.
9:2 Threshing floors and wine vats will not feed the people,4
and new wine only deceives them.5
Assyrian Exile Will Reverse the Egyptian Exodus
9:3 They will not remain in the
Ephraim will return to Egypt;
they will eat ritually unclean food in Assyria.
9:4 They will not pour out drink offerings of wine to the
they will not please him with their sacrifices.
Their sacrifices will be like bread eaten while in mourning;
all those who eat them will make themselves ritually unclean.
For their bread will be only to satisfy their appetite;
it will not come into the temple of the
9:5 So what will you do on the festival day,
on the festival days of the
No Escape for the Israelites This Time!
9:6 Look!6 Even if7 they flee from the destruction,
Egypt will take hold8 of them,
and Memphis will bury them.
The weeds will inherit the silver they treasure9 –
thorn bushes will occupy their homes.10
9:7 The time of judgment11 is about to arrive!12
The time of retribution13 is imminent!14
Let Israel know!15
Israel Rejects Hosea’s Prophetic Exhortations
The prophet is considered a fool16 –
the inspired man17 is viewed as a madman18 –
because of the multitude of your sins
and your intense19 animosity.
9:8 The prophet20 is a watchman21 over Ephraim22 on behalf of God,23
yet traps24 are laid for him along all of his paths;25
animosity rages against him in the land26 of his God.
The Best of Times, the Worst of Times
9:9 They have sunk deep into corruption27
as in the days of Gibeah.
He will remember their wrongdoing.
He will repay them for their sins.
9:10 When I found Israel, it was like finding grapes in the wilderness.
I viewed your ancestors28 like an early fig on a fig tree in its first season.
Then they came to Baal-Peor and they dedicated themselves to shame –
they became as detestable as what they loved.
The Fertility Worshipers Will Become Infertile
9:11 Ephraim will be like a bird;
what they value29 will fly away.
They will not bear children –
they will not enjoy pregnancy –
they will not even conceive!30
9:12 Even if they raise their children,
I will take away every last one of them.31
Woe to them!
For I will turn away from them.
9:13 Just as lion cubs are born predators,32
so Ephraim will bear his sons for slaughter.
9:14 Give them, O
what will you give them?
Give them wombs that miscarry,
and breasts that cannot nurse!33
9:15 Because of all their evil in Gilgal,
I hate them there.
On account of their evil deeds,
I will drive them out of my land.34
I will no longer love them;
all their rulers are rebels.
9:16 Ephraim will be struck down35 –
their root will be dried up;
they will not yield any fruit.
Even if they do bear children,
I will kill their precious offspring.
9:17 My God will reject them,
for they have not obeyed him;
so they will be fugitives among the nations.