Hosea - Chapter 5

1Hear this, O Kohanim, Attend, O House of Yisrael, And give ear, O royal house; For right conduct is your responsibility! But you have been a snare to Mitzpa And a net spread out over Tavor;

shim-u ZOT ha-ko-ha-NEEM v'-hak-SHEE-vu BAYT yis-ra-AYL u-VAYT ha-ME-lekh ha-a-ZEE-nu KEE la-KHEM ha-mish-PAT kee FAKH he-yee-TEM l'-mitz-PAH v'-RE-shet p'-ru-SAH al ta-VOR

אשִׁמְעוּ־זֹאת הַכֹּהֲנִים וְהַקְשִׁיבוּ בֵּית יִשְׂרָאֵל וּבֵית הַמֶּלֶךְ הַאֲזִינוּ כִּי לָכֶם הַמִּשְׁפָּט כִּי־פַח הֱיִיתֶם לְמִצְפָּה וְרֶשֶׁת פְּרוּשָׂה עַל־תָּבוֹר׃

 5:1  But you have been a snare to Mitzpa and a net spread out over Tavor 

Mount Tavor

Hoshea targets the leadership of Israel for failing the people, calling them “a snare to Mitzpa and a net spread out over Tavor.” These two places carry strong echoes from Israel’s history. Mitzpa is a site of Israelite worship of God in the times of the Judges (Judges 20:1). Hashem saves His people at Mitzpa during the time of Shmuel (I Samuel 7:10-11), and it is the place where the tribes gather to demand the appointment of Israel’s first king, Shaul (I Samuel 8-12). The mountain of Tavor is where the tribes gather together to fight Yavin, king of Hazor and his general Sisera (Judges 4-5). The same places where Hashem brought salvation to His people in the past, are now used as sites of sin and rebellion against Him.

2For when trappers dug deep pitfalls, I was the only reprover of them all.

בוְשַׁחֲטָה שֵׂטִים הֶעְמִיקוּ וַאֲנִי מוּסָר לְכֻלָּם׃

3Yes, I have watched Efraim, Yisrael has not escaped my notice: Behold, you have fornicated, O Efraim; Yisrael has defiled himself!

גאֲנִי יָדַעְתִּי אֶפְרַיִם וְיִשְׂרָאֵל לֹא־נִכְחַד מִמֶּנִּי כִּי עַתָּה הִזְנֵיתָ אֶפְרַיִם נִטְמָא יִשְׂרָאֵל׃

4Their habits do not let them Turn back to their God; Because of the lecherous impulse within them, They pay no heed to Hashem.

דלֹא יִתְּנוּ מַעַלְלֵיהֶם לָשׁוּב אֶל־אֱלֹהֵיהֶם כִּי רוּחַ זְנוּנִים בְּקִרְבָּם וְאֶת־יְהֹוָה לֹא יָדָעוּ׃

5Yisrael's pride shall be humbled before his very eyes, As Yisrael and Efraim fall because of their sin (And Yehuda falls with them).

הוְעָנָה גְאוֹן־יִשְׂרָאֵל בְּפָנָיו וְיִשְׂרָאֵל וְאֶפְרַיִם יִכָּשְׁלוּ בַּעֲוׂנָם כָּשַׁל גַּם־יְהוּדָה עִמָּם׃

6Then they will go with their sheep and cattle To seek Hashem, but they will not find Him. He has cast them off:

ובְּצֹאנָם וּבִבְקָרָם יֵלְכוּ לְבַקֵּשׁ אֶת־יְהֹוָה וְלֹא יִמְצָאוּ חָלַץ מֵהֶם׃

7[Because] they have broken faith with Hashem, Because they have begotten Alien children. Therefore, the new moon Shall devour their portion.

זבַּיהֹוָה בָּגָדוּ כִּי־בָנִים זָרִים יָלָדוּ עַתָּה יֹאכְלֵם חֹדֶשׁ אֶת־חֶלְקֵיהֶם׃

8Sound a shofar in Giva, A trumpet in Rama; Give the alarm in Beit Aven; After you, Binyamin!

חתִּקְעוּ שׁוֹפָר בַּגִּבְעָה חֲצֹצְרָה בָּרָמָה הָרִיעוּ בֵּית אָוֶן אַחֲרֶיךָ בִּנְיָמִין׃

9Efraim is stricken with horror On a day of chastisement. Against the tribes of Yisrael I proclaim certainties:

טאֶפְרַיִם לְשַׁמָּה תִהְיֶה בְּיוֹם תּוֹכֵחָה בְּשִׁבְטֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל הוֹדַעְתִּי נֶאֱמָנָה׃

10The officers of Yehuda have acted Like shifters of field boundaries; On them I will pour out My wrath like water.

יהָיוּ שָׂרֵי יְהוּדָה כְּמַסִּיגֵי גְּבוּל עֲלֵיהֶם אֶשְׁפּוֹךְ כַּמַּיִם עֶבְרָתִי׃

11Efraim is defrauded Robbed of redress, Because he has witlessly Gone after futility.

יאעָשׁוּק אֶפְרַיִם רְצוּץ מִשְׁפָּט כִּי הוֹאִיל הָלַךְ אַחֲרֵי־צָו׃

12For it is I who am like rot to Efraim, Like decay to the House of Yehuda;

יבוַאֲנִי כָעָשׁ לְאֶפְרָיִם וְכָרָקָב לְבֵית יְהוּדָה׃

13Yet when Efraim became aware of his sickness, Yehuda of his sores, Efraim repaired to Assyria— He sent envoys to a patron king! He will never be able to cure you, Will not heal you of your sores.

יגוַיַּרְא אֶפְרַיִם אֶת־חָלְיוֹ וִיהוּדָה אֶת־מְזֹרוֹ וַיֵּלֶךְ אֶפְרַיִם אֶל־אַשּׁוּר וַיִּשְׁלַח אֶל־מֶלֶךְ יָרֵב וְהוּא לֹא יוּכַל לִרְפֹּא לָכֶם וְלֹא־יִגְהֶה מִכֶּם מָזוֹר׃

14No, I will be like a lion to Efraim, Like a great beast to the House of Yehuda; I, I will attack and stride away, Carrying the prey that no one can rescue;

ידכִּי אָנֹכִי כַשַּׁחַל לְאֶפְרַיִם וְכַכְּפִיר לְבֵית יְהוּדָה אֲנִי אֲנִי אֶטְרֹף וְאֵלֵךְ אֶשָּׂא וְאֵין מַצִּיל׃

15And I will return to My abode— Till they realize their guilt. In their distress, they will seek Me And beg for My favor.

טואֵלֵךְ אָשׁוּבָה אֶל־מְקוֹמִי עַד אֲשֶׁר־יֶאְשְׁמוּ וּבִקְשׁוּ פָנָי בַּצַּר לָהֶם יְשַׁחֲרֻנְנִי׃