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14:1 O israel, return unto the LORD thy God; for thou hast fallen by thine iniquity.
14:2 Take with you words, and turn to the LORD: say unto him, Take away all iniquity, and receive us graciously: so will we render the calves of our lips.
14:3 Asshur shall not save us; we will not ride upon horses: neither will we say any more to the work of our hands, Ye are our gods: for in thee the fatherless findeth mercy.
14:4 I will heal their backsliding, I will love them freely: for mine anger is turned away from him.
14:5 I will be as the dew unto Israel: he shall grow as the lily, and cast forth his roots as Lebanon.
14:6 His branches shall spread, and his beauty shall be as the olive tree, and his smell as Lebanon.
14:7 They that dwell under his shadow shall return; they shall revive as the corn, and grow as the vine: the scent thereof shall be as the wine of Lebanon.
14:8 Ephraim shall say, What have I to do any more with idols? I have heard him, and observed him: I am like a green fir tree. From me is thy fruit found.
14:9 Who is wise, and he shall understand these things? prudent, and he shall know them? for the ways of the LORD are right, and the just shall walk in them: but the transgressors shall fall therein.

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Everything King James Bible:Hosea
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary on the Whole Bible
back to: Hosea
Book: Hosea
Chapter: 14

Overview:
An exhortation to Repentance. (1-3) Blessings promised,
showing the rich comforts of the Gospel. (4-8) The just and the
wicked. (9)

1-3 Israel is exhorted to return unto Jehovah, from their sins
and idols, By Faith in his Mercy, and Grace through the promised
Redeemer, and By diligently attending On his Worship and
service. Take away iniquity; lift it off as a Burden we are
ready to sink under, or as the stumbling-block we have often
fallen over. Take it all away By a free and full forgiveness,
for we cannot strike any of it off. Receive our Prayer
graciously. They do not say what good they seek, but refer it to
God. It is not good of the world's showing, but good of God's
giving. They were to consider their sins, their wants, and the
remedy; and they were to take, not sacrifices, but words stating
the desires of their hearts, and with them to address the Lord.
The whole forms a clear description of the nature and tendency
of a sinner's Conversion to God through Jesus Christ. As we draw
near to God By the Prayer of Faith, we should first beseech him
to teach us what to ask. We must be Earnest with him to take
away all iniquity.

4-8 Israel seeks God's Face, and they shall not seek it in
vain. His Anger is turned from them. Whom God loves, he loves
freely; not because they deserve it, but of his own good
pleasure. God will be to them all they need. The graces of the
Spirit are the hidden Manna, hidden in the Dew; the Grace thus
freely bestowed On them shall not be in vain. They shall grow
upward, and be more flourishing; shall grow as the Lily. The
Lily, when come to its height, is a lovely flower, Mt 6:28,29.
They shall grow downward, and be more firm. With the flower of
the Lily shall be the strong root of the Cedar of Lebanon.
Spiritual growth consists most in the growth of the root, which
is out of sight. They shall also spread as the Vine, whose
branches extend very widely. When believers abound in good
Works, then their branches spread. They shall be acceptable both
to God and Man. Holiness is the beauty of a soul. The Church is
compared to the Vine and the Olive, which bring forth useful
fruits. God's promises pertain to those only that attend On his
ordinances; not such as flee to this Shadow only for shelter in
a hot gleam, but all who Dwell under it. When a Man is brought
to God, all who Dwell under his Shadow fare the better. The
sanctifying fruits shall appear in his Life. Thus believers grow
up into the experience and fruitfulness of the Gospel. Ephraim
shall say, God will Put it into his Heart to say it, What have I
to do any more with idols! God's promises to us are more our
security and our strength for mortifying Sin, than our promises
to God. See the power of Divine Grace. God will work such a
change in him, that he shall loathe the idols as much as ever he
loved them. See the benefit of sanctified Afflictions. Ephraim
smarted for his Idolatry, and this is the Fruit, even the taking
away his Sin, Isa 27:9. See the nature of Repentance; it is a
firm and fixed resolution to have No more to do with Sin. The
Lord meets penitents with Mercy, as the Father of the prodigal
met his returning son. God will be to all true converts both a
delight and a defence; they shall sit under his Shadow with
delight. And as the root of a tree; From me is thy Fruit found:
from Him we receive Grace and strength to enable us to do our
duty.

9 Who profit By the truths the Prophet delivered? Such as set
themselves to understand and know these things. The ways of
God's Providence towards us are right; all is Well done. Christ
is a Foundation Stone to some, to others a Stone of stumbling,
and a Rock of Offence. That which was ordained to Life, becomes,
through their abuse of it, Death to them. The same Sun softens
Wax and hardens Clay. But those transgressors certainly have the
most dangerous, fatal falls, who fall in the ways of God, who
split On the Rock of Ages, and suck Poison out of the Balm of
Gilead. Let sinners in Zion fear this. May we learn to walk in
the right ways of God, as his righteous servants, and may none
of us be disobedient and unbelieving, and stumble at the Word.

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