G2 H1 1,2-. Yahaveh. Invitation. J1 -2,3. Israel. Confession. Words provided. H2 4-7. Yahaveh. Promises. J2 8-. Israel. Confession. Words used. H3 -8. Yahaveh. Blessing.
1 O Israel, return quite up to the LORD your God (cp. 12:6. Joel 2:13); for you have fallen by your iniquity.
2 Take with you words (note confession commanded, and the command obeyed [v.8]), and return to the LORD: say to Him,
"Take away all iniquity, and receive us O gracious One: so will we render (pay [as vows] by offering what is due [Pss. 66:13,14; 116:14,18. Jonah 2:9) the oxen (put for the sacrifices offered [Ps. 51:17) of our lips. (Put for confessions, &ct. made by them. Quoted in Heb. 13:15. Cp. Pss. 69:30,31; 116:17; 141:2. Heb. 13:15.)
3 Asshur shall not save us (see 5:13; 12:1; and cp. Jer. 31:18); we will not ride upon horses (See Deut. 17:16. Cp. Ps. 33:17. Isa. 30:2,16; 31:1): neither will we say any more to the work of our hands (put for idols of all kinds), 'You are our gods:' O You in Whom the fatherless finds mercy." (= Pitied, i.e. Israel's orphaned folk. Here we have the key to the symbolic names of ch. 1:-
Gomer shows that the measure of iniquity was full.
Jezreel denotes the consequent scattering.
Lo-Ruhamah [the 2nd child, the girl] foreshadows Israel as the unpitied one.
Lo-Ammi [the last child] denotes Israel's present condition.
Ammi represents Israel's yet future position [2:1].
Ruhama = pitied, Lo-Ruhamah's new name [2:23])
4 I will heal their backsliding (cp. 11:7. Jer. 5:6; 14:7), I will love them freely: for My anger is turned away from him. (i.e. Israel.)
5 I will be as the dew (see 6:4; 13:3) to Israel: he shall blossom as the lily, and strike out his roots like [those of] Lebanon. (The spurs of Lebanon have the appearance of outspreading roots.)
6 His branches shall spread, and his beauty shall be as the olive tree, and be fragrant, like Lebanon.
7 They that dwell under his shadow shall return; they shall revive as the corn, and grow as the vine: his remembrance [pleasant] as the wine of Lebanon.
8 Ephraim shall say (in obedience to command in v.1)," What have I to do any more with idols? I have heard and obeyed Him (contrast 13:7), and observed Him: I am like a green fir tree [will overshadow him].
From Me is fruit found. (Fruitfulness provided, as well as protection and grace.)
9 Who is wise, and he shall understand these things? (Consider the whole book, like Ps. 107:43) [who is] gifted with understanding? and he shall know them? for the ways of the LORD are upright, and the righteous shall walk in them: but the transgressors shall tumble in them." (Cp. Ps. 119:165. Prov. 4:19; 10:29; 11:5; 15:9. Mic. 2:7. Nah. 3:3. 1 Cor. 23,24. 1 Pet. 2:7,8.)