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The Complete Jewish Bible with Rashi Commentary
   

Hoshea - Hosea - Chapter 1

Hoshea - Hosea - Chapter 1

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Rashi's Commentary:

Chapter 1

1. The word of the Lord which came to Hosea the son of Beeri in the days of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, [and] Hezekiah, kings of Judah, and in the days of Jeroboam the son of Joash king of Israel.   א. דְּבַר יְהֹוָה | אֲשֶׁר הָיָה אֶל הוֹשֵׁעַ בֶּן בְּאֵרִי בִּימֵי עֻזִּיָּה יוֹתָם אָחָז יְחִזְקִיָּה מַלְכֵי יְהוּדָה וּבִימֵי יָרָבְעָם בֶּן יוֹאָשׁ מֶלֶךְ יִשְׂרָאֵל:
The word of the Lord which came to Hosea the son of Beeri in the days of Uzziah, Jotham, etc.: He buried these four kings during his lifetime, for he outlived them all. From here they derived the maxim: Woe is to authority, for it buries its holders [from Pesachim 87b].  
and in the days of Jeroboam the son of Joash: He was of the sons of Jehu [i.e., a great grandson of Jehu], and he too reigned with Uzziah and Jotham, but a meritorious deed caused him to be counted with these righteous men, since he did not heed slander concerning Amos, as is explained in Pesachim, in the chapter entitled הָאִשָּׁה, “The woman” (87b), as it is stated: “(Amos 7:10) And Amaziah sent etc. ‘Amos has conspired against you etc.’”  
2. At the beginning of the Lord's speaking to Hosea, the Lord said to Hosea: Go, take yourself a wife of harlotry and children of harlotry, for the land goes astray from following the Lord.   ב. תְּחִלַּת דִּבֶּר יְהֹוָה בְּהוֹשֵׁעַ וַיֹּאמֶר יְהֹוָה אֶל הוֹשֵׁעַ לֵךְ קַח לְךָ אֵשֶׁת זְנוּנִים וְיַלְדֵי זְנוּנִים כִּי זָנֹה תִזְנֶה הָאָרֶץ מֵאַחֲרֵי יְהֹוָה:
At the beginning of the Lord’s speaking to Hosea: Lit. in the beginning the Lord spoke to Hosea. Therefore, our Rabbis stated: The first of the four prophets who prophesied (in these days): Hosea, Isaiah, Amos, and Micah. [Parshandatha reads: in the days of Uzziah. Michah, in fact, is not mentioned as having prophesized in the days of Uzziah, but only in the days of Jotham, Ahaz and Hezekiah; this will be explained further. In Pesachim 87a, we read: at that time] Isaiah prophesized [at the time of the earthquake (Parshandatha)], as it is stated: (Isaiah 6:4) “And the doorposts quaked etc.” And that was the day that Uzziah was stricken when he entered the Temple, for the ethereal beings clamored to burn him, and the earthly beings to swallow him as the punishment of Korah’s company, among which there were [some] swallowed up and [some] burned. Concerning Amos, it is stated: (Amos 1:1) “Two years before the earthquake.” [Amos, accordingly, preceded Isaiah.] And Micah was the last of all of them, for it is said concerning him: (Micah 1:1) “In the days of Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah,” and Uzziah is not mentioned in his regard (Cf. Pesachim 87a; Seder Olam, ch. 20; Tanhuma Tzav 13; Rashi, Isaiah 6:4). But the simple meaning of the verse is: At the beginning of the speech which the Holy One, blessed be He, spoke to Hosea, he said this to him.  
take yourself a wife of harlotry: Our Rabbis said: This is to be explained according to its apparent meaning: Since he said about Israel, “Exchange them for another nation,” as is explained in Pesachim at the beginning of the chapter entitled האשה, “The woman” (87a).  
and children of harlotry: For she will bear you children who will be of possible illegitimacy. And Jonathan paraphrased: Prophesy a prophecy about the inhabitants of the cities of idolatry. The word קַח, stated here is an expression of teaching, [derived from לֶקַח, doctrine]. Teach them to repent.  
goes astray: Heb. תִּזְנֶה. This is the present tense.  
3. And he went and took Gomer the daughter of Diblaim, and she conceived and bore him a son.   ג. וַיֵּלֶךְ וַיִּקַּח אֶת גֹּמֶר בַּת דִּבְלָיִם וַתַּהַר וַתֵּלֶד לוֹ בֵּן:
Gomer: Our Rabbis (Pesachim 87a) said. That was her name by dint of her harlotry, for all would gratify their lust on her (גּוֹמְרִין) and they would tread upon her like a pressed fig (דְּבֵלָה). [That is a euphemism for sexual contact.] Jonathan, however, paraphrases: גֹּמֶר, that if they would return from their way, their retribution would be finished, and if not, they will be like unripe figs falling from the fig tree.  
and she conceived and bore: Jonathan paraphrases: And they continued to do evil deeds.  
4. And the Lord said to him: Name him Jezreel, for, in a short time, I will visit the blood of Jezreel upon the house of Jehu, and I will terminate the kingdom of the house of Israel.   ד. וַיֹּאמֶר יְהֹוָה אֵלָיו קְרָא שְׁמוֹ יִזְרְעֶאל כִּי עוֹד מְעַט וּפָקַדְתִּי אֶת דְּמֵי יִזְרְעֶאל עַל בֵּית יֵהוּא וְהִשְׁבַּתִּי מַמְלְכוּת בֵּית יִשְׂרָאֵל:
Name him Jezreel: Jonathan renders: Call their name the scattered ones. I.e. prophesy over them that they will be exiled, and they will be sown among the peoples.  
the blood of Jezreel: To be understood according to its Aramaic translation: the blood of the house of Ahab, whom Jehu slew in Jezreel because they worshipped Baal, and he and his sons went afterwards and worshipped pagan deities; therefore, I account for them the blood of the house of Ahab as innocent blood.  
upon the house of Jehu: Jeroboam the son of Joash was of the sons of Jehu, and his son Zechariah was assassinated.  
5. And it shall come to pass on that day that I will break the bow of Israel in the Valley of Jezreel.   ה. וְהָיָה בַּיּוֹם הַהוּא וְשָׁבַרְתִּי אֶת קֶשֶׁת יִשְׂרָאֵל בְּעֵמֶק יִזְרְעֶאל:
6. And she conceived again and bore a daughter, and He said to him: Name her Lo-ruhamah, for I will not continue to grant clemency to the house of Israel, but I will mete out their portion to them.   ו. וַתַּהַר עוֹד וַתֵּלֶד בַּת וַיֹּאמֶר לוֹ קְרָא שְׁמָהּ לֹא רֻחָמָה כִּי לֹא אוֹסִיף עוֹד אֲרַחֵם אֶת בֵּית יִשְׂרָאֵל כִּי נָשֹא אֶשָּׂא לָהֶם:
I will not continue to grant clemency Heb.: אֲרַחֵם, like לְרַחֵם, to grant clemency.  
but I will mete out their portion to them: I will mete out to them the portion of their cup and their deed. This expression is like (Gen. 43: 34), “And he gave out portions (וַיִּשָּׂא מַשְׂאֹת).”  
7. But to the house of Judah will I grant clemency, and I will save them by the Lord their God, but I will not save them with the bow, with the sword, with war, with steeds, or with riders.   ז. וְאֶת בֵּית יְהוּדָה אֲרַחֵם וְהוֹשַׁעְתִּים בַּיהֹוָה אֱלֹהֵיהֶם וְלֹא אוֹשִׁיעֵם בְּקֶשֶׁת וּבְחֶרֶב וּבְמִלְחָמָה בְּסוּסִים וּבְפָרָשִׁים:
But to the house of Judah will I grant clemency: after I terminate the kingdom of Israel, for after the ten tribes were exiled, the house of Judah was the object of clemency from Hezekiah until Zedakiah.  
8. And she weaned Lo-ruhamah, and she conceived and bore a son.   ח. וַתִּגְמֹל אֶת לֹא רֻחָמָה וַתַּהַר וַתֵּלֶד בֵּן:
And she weaned Lo ruhamah: According to the Targum, we explain: And that generation shall perish among the nations where they were exiled.  
and she conceived and bore a son: According to the Targum: And they continued and committed evil deeds. But according to its simple meaning, we explain it as it apparently means.  
9. And He said: Name him Lo-ammi, for you are not My people, and I will not be yours.   ט. וַיֹּאמֶר קְרָא שְׁמוֹ לֹא עַמִּי כִּי אַתֶּם לֹא עַמִּי וְאָנֹכִי לֹא אֶהְיֶה לָכֶם:
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