Hosea 13
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Listen to this chapter in Hebrew:

1  When Efraim spoke there was trembling he exalted himself in Yisrael; but when he became guilty through Baal he died.

א  כְּדַבֵּר אֶפְרַיִם רְתֵת נָשָׂא הוּא בְּיִשְׂרָאֵל וַיֶּאְשַׁם בַּבַּעַל וַיָּמֹת.

2  And now they sin more and more and have made them molten images of their silver according to their own understanding even idols all of them the work of the craftsmen; of them they say: ‘They that sacrifice men kiss calves.’

ב  וְעַתָּה יוֹסִפוּ לַחֲטֹא וַיַּעֲשׂוּ לָהֶם מַסֵּכָה מִכַּסְפָּם כִּתְבוּנָם עֲצַבִּים מַעֲשֵׂה חָרָשִׁים כֻּלֹּה לָהֶם הֵם אֹמְרִים זֹבְחֵי אָדָם עֲגָלִים יִשָּׁקוּן.

3  Therefore they shall be as the morning cloud and as the dew that early passeth away as the chaff that is driven with the wind out of the threshing-floor and as the smoke out of the window.

ג  לָכֵן יִהְיוּ כַּעֲנַן בֹּקֶר וְכַטַּל מַשְׁכִּים הֹלֵךְ כְּמֹץ יְסֹעֵר מִגֹּרֶן וּכְעָשָׁן מֵאֲרֻבָּה.

4  Yet I am Hashem thy God from the land of Mitzrayim; and thou knowest no God but Me and beside Me there is no saviour.

ד  וְאָנֹכִי יְהוָה אֱלֹהֶיךָ מֵאֶרֶץ מִצְרָיִם וֵאלֹהִים זוּלָתִי לֹא תֵדָע וּמוֹשִׁיעַ אַיִן בִּלְתִּי.

5  I did know thee in the wilderness in the land of great drought.

ה  אֲנִי יְדַעְתִּיךָ בַּמִּדְבָּר בְּאֶרֶץ תַּלְאֻבוֹת.

6  When they were fed they became full they were filled and their heart was exalted; therefore have they forgotten Me.

ו  כְּמַרְעִיתָם וַיִּשְׂבָּעוּ שָׂבְעוּ וַיָּרָם לִבָּם עַל כֵּן שְׁכֵחוּנִי.

7  Therefore am I become unto them as a lion; as a leopard will I watch by the way;

ז  וָאֱהִי לָהֶם כְּמוֹ שָׁחַל כְּנָמֵר עַל דֶּרֶךְ אָשׁוּר.

8  I will meet them as a bear that is bereaved of her whelps and will rend the enclosure of their heart; and there will I devour them like a lioness; the wild beast shall tear them.

ef-g’-SHAYM k’-DOV sha-KUL v’-ek-RA s’-GOR li-BAM v’-o-kh’-LAYM sham k’-la-VEE kha-YAT ha-sa-DEH t’-va-k’-AYM

ח  אֶפְגְּשֵׁם כְּדֹב שַׁכּוּל וְאֶקְרַע סְגוֹר לִבָּם וְאֹכְלֵם שָׁם כְּלָבִיא חַיַּת הַשָּׂדֶה תְּבַקְּעֵם.

13:8  As a bear that is bereaved of her whelps

Hosea portrays God in His ferocious anger at the Children of Israel, as a she-bear whose cubs have been stolen. The medieval commentator Rabbi David Kimchi notes that the mother bear takes care of her young cubs much more than most other animals. Therefore, the sense of anger at the loss of her cubs is correspondingly so much stronger. Similarly, God cared for Israel for so long that His sense of loss at their rejection of Him is enormous.


9  It is thy destruction O Yisrael that thou art against Me against thy help.

ט  שִׁחֶתְךָ יִשְׂרָאֵל כִּי בִי בְעֶזְרֶךָ.

10  Ho now thy king that he may save thee in all thy cities! and thy judges of whom thou saidst: ‘Give me a king and princes!’

י  אֱהִי מַלְכְּךָ אֵפוֹא וְיוֹשִׁיעֲךָ בְּכָל עָרֶיךָ וְשֹׁפְטֶיךָ אֲשֶׁר אָמַרְתָּ תְּנָה לִּי מֶלֶךְ וְשָׂרִים.

11  I give thee a king in Mine anger and take him away in My wrath.

יא  אֶתֶּן לְךָ מֶלֶךְ בְּאַפִּי וְאֶקַּח בְּעֶבְרָתִי.

12  The iniquity of Efraim is bound up; his sin is laid up in store.

יב  צָרוּר עֲו‍ֹן אֶפְרָיִם צְפוּנָה חַטָּאתוֹ.

13  The throes of a travailing woman shall come upon him; he is an unwise son; for it is time he should not tarry in the place of the breaking forth of children.

יג  חֶבְלֵי יוֹלֵדָה יָבֹאוּ לוֹ הוּא בֵן לֹא חָכָם כִּי עֵת לֹא יַעֲמֹד בְּמִשְׁבַּר בָּנִים.

14  Shall I ransom them from the power of the nether-world? Shall I redeem them from death? Ho thy plagues O death! Ho thy destruction O nether-world! Repentance be hid from Mine eyes!

יד  מִיַּד שְׁאוֹל אֶפְדֵּם מִמָּוֶת אֶגְאָלֵם אֱהִי דְבָרֶיךָ מָוֶת אֱהִי קָטָבְךָ שְׁאוֹל נֹחַם יִסָּתֵר מֵעֵינָי.

15  For though he be fruitful among the reed-plants an east wind shall come the wind of Hashem coming up from the wilderness and his spring shall become dry and his fountain shall be dried up; he shall spoil the treasure of all precious vessels.

טו  כִּי הוּא בֵּין אַחִים יַפְרִיא יָבוֹא קָדִים רוּחַ יְהוָה מִמִּדְבָּר עֹלֶה וְיֵבוֹשׁ מְקוֹרוֹ וְיֶחֱרַב מַעְיָנוֹ הוּא יִשְׁסֶה אוֹצַר כָּל כְּלִי חֶמְדָּה.

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Hosea 12
Hosea 14

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Hosea 13