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Hosea 13:1

Context
Baal Worshipers and Calf Worshipers to be Destroyed

13:1 When Ephraim 1  spoke, 2  there was terror; 3 

he was exalted 4  in Israel,

but he became guilty by worshiping Baal and died.

1 sn In Hosea the name “Ephraim” does not refer to the tribe, but to the region of Mount Ephraim where the royal residence of Samaria was located. It functions as a synecdoche of location (Mount Ephraim) for its inhabitants (the king of Samaria; e.g., 5:13; 8:8, 10).

2 tn The rulers of Ephraim (i.e., Samaria) issued many political decisions in the 8th century b.c. which brought “terror” to the other regions of the Northern Kingdom, as well as to Judah: “hearts shook as the trees of the forest shake before the wind” (Isa 7:2; 2 Kgs 16:5).

3 tn The noun רְתֵת (rÿtet, “terror, trembling”) appears only here in OT (BDB 958 s.v. רְתֵת; HALOT 1300-1301 s.v. רְתֵת). However, it is attested in 1QH 4:33 where it means “trembling” and is used as a synonym with רַעַד (raad, “quaking”). It also appears in Mishnaic Hebrew, meaning “trembling” (G. Dalman, Aramäisch-neuhebräisches Handwörterbuch, 406, s.v. רעד). This is the meaning reflected in the Greek recensions of Aquila, Symmachus, and Theodotion, as well as Jerome’s Latin Vulgate.

4 tc The MT vocalizes the consonantal text as נָשָׂא (nasa’, “he exalted”; Qal perfect 3rd person masculine singular) which is syntactically awkward. The LXX and Syriac reflect a vocalization tradition of נִשָּׂא (nisa’, “he was exalted”; Niphal perfect 3rd person masculine singular). The BHS editors suggest that this revocalization should be adopted, and it has been followed by NAB, NIV, NRSV.



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