Bible Verse Explanations and Resources


Hosea 9:14

Adam Clarke
Bible Commentary

Give them, O Lord: what wilt thou give? - There is an uncommon beauty in these words. The prophet, seeing the evils that were likely to fall upon his countrymen, begins to make intercession for them; but when he had formed the first part of his petition, "Give them, O Lord!" the prophetic light discovered to him that the petition would not be answered and that God was about to give them something widely different. Then changing his petition, which the Divine Spirit had interrupted, by signifying that he must not proceed in his request, he asks the question, then, "What wilt thou give them?" and the answer is, "Give them a miscarrying womb, and dry breasts." And this he is commanded to announce. It is probable that the Israelites had prided themselves in the fruitfulness of their families, and the numerous population of their country. God now tells them that this shall be no more; their wives shall be barren, and their land cursed.

Matthew Henry
Concise Bible Commentary
God departs from a people, or from a person, when he withdraws his goodness and mercy from them; and when the Lord is departed, what can the creature do? Even though, for the present, good things seem to remain, yet the blessing is gone if God is gone. Even the children should perish with the parents. The Divine wrath dries up the root, and withers the fruit of all comforts; and the scattered Jews daily warn us to beware, lest we neglect or abuse the gospel. Yet every smiting is not a drying up of the root. It may be that God intends only to smite so that the sap may be turned to the root, that there may be more of root graces, more humility, patience, faith, and self-denial. It is very just that God should bring judgments on those who slight his offered mercy.
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