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Hosea 13:14

Context
The Lord Will Not Relent from the Threatened Judgment

13:14 Will I deliver them from the power of Sheol? No, I will not! 1 

Will I redeem them from death? No, I will not!

O Death, bring on your plagues! 2 

O Sheol, bring on your destruction! 3 

My eyes will not show any compassion! 4 

1 tn The translation of the first two lines of this verse reflects the interpretation adopted. There are three interpretive options to v. 14: (1) In spite of Israel’s sins, the Lord will redeem them from the threat of death and destruction (e.g., 11:8). However, against this view, the last line of 13:14 probably means that the Lord will not show compassion to Israel. (2) The Lord announces the triumphant victory over death through resurrection (cf. KJV, ASV, NIV). However, although Paul uses the wording of Hosea 13:14 as an illustration of victory over death, the context of Hosea’s message is the imminent judgment in 723-722 b.c. (3) The first two lines of 13:14 are rhetorical questions without explicit interrogative markers, implying negative answers: “I will not rescue them!” (cf. NAB, NASB, NCV, NRSV, TEV, CEV, NLT). The next two lines in 13:14 are words of encouragement to Death and Sheol to destroy Israel. The final line announces that the Lord will not show compassion on Israel; he will not spare her.

2 tn Heb “Where, O Death, are your plagues?” (so NIV).

3 tn Heb “Where, O Sheol, is your destruction?” (NRSV similar).

sn The two rhetorical questions in 13:14b function as words of encouragement, inviting personified Death and Sheol to draw near like foreign invading armies to attack and kill Israel (cf. TEV, CEV, NLT).

4 tn Heb “Compassion will be hidden from my eyes” (NRSV similar; NASB “from my sight”).



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