1 Set the trumpet to your mouth (see 5:8. Cp. Isa. 58:1). It (i.e. the threatened judgment) is coming as an eagle against the house of the LORD (this is not merely comparison but assertion: i.e swiftly. It is not the eagle that comes against the Temple. Cp. Jer. 4:13. Hab. 1;8), because they have transgressed My covenant, and trespassed against My law.
2 To Me will they cry: "My God, we know You: Israel [knows You]." (Cp. Matt. 7:22. John 8:54,55. Isa. 29:13 [Matt. 15:8].)
3 Israel has cast off the Gracious One (cp. 3:5; 14:1): the enemy shall pursue him.
4 They have set up kings (cp. 7:7. See 2 Kings 15:13,17,27 [Shallum, Menahem, Pekah]), but not by Me: they have caused [men] to bear rule, and I acknowledged it not: of their silver and their gold have they made them idols (cp. 2;8; 13:2), that he (the nation spoken of as one man) may be cut off.
5 He (Yehovah) has rejected your calf, O Samaria (the capital is put for the whole nation); My anger is kindled against them: how long will it be before they [be able to] attain to innocency?
6 For from Israel! (i.e. from Israel, of all people) [does this conduct proceed! - and he -! (i.e., and that calf, what is it)]? A craftman made him, so no God is he: but the calf of Samaria shall be broken in fragments (or splinters).
7 For they have sown the wind, and they shall reap the whirlwind: it has no stalk; the flower will yield no flour: if so be it yield, the outsiders (cp. 7:9) shall swallow it up.
8 Israel is swallowed up (see 2 Kings 17:6): now shall they be among the nations as a vessel wherein is no pleasure. (Cp. Jer. 22:28; 48:38.)
9 For they are gone up to Assyria (cp. 5:13; 7:11), [as] a wild ass alone by himself: Ephraim has paid the love-fee. (Comparing idolatry to whoredom. Cp. Ezek. 16:33,34; and see 2 Chron. 28:20,21.)
10 Yes, though they have hired [lovers] among the nations, now will I gather [against] them (i.e. the nations [Israel's lovers), and, before long, they will be writhing under the burden (i.e. the tribute [laid on them]): king [will be writhing], princes [will be writhing].
11 Because Ephraim has manipulated altars to sin, altars shall have become to him to sin. (Put for the judgment caused by sin.)
12 I have written (not Moses: he was only the pen. It was God who "spoke by the prophets" [Heb. 1:1]; by His Son [John 7:16; 8:28,46,47; 12:49; 17:8; by His Spirit [John 16:13. Cp. Heb. 2:4; and by Paul, "the prisoner of Jesus Christ" [cp. 2 Tim. 1:8]. Note the ref to Ex. 17:14; 24:4,7; 34:27. Num. 33:1,2. Deut. 4:6-8,&c.) to him the weighty things of My law (not Moses), but they were accounted as something foreign. (As modern critics do today. This verse necessitates the accessibility of the law in a written form, and gives more than a clue to the date of the Pentateuch.)
13 They sacrifice flesh for the sacrifices of My sacrificial gifts (see Jer. 7:21-23. Zech. 7:6), and that they may eat it [as common food]; but the LORD accepts them not; now will He remember their iniquity, and visit their sins: they shall return to Egypt. (Cp. Deut. 28:68.)
14 For Israel has forgotten his Maker (cp. Deut. 32:18), and builds temples (cp. 1 Kings 12:31, and 2 Chron. 24:7 with 23:17); and Judah has multiplied fortified cities (see 2 Chron. 26:9,10): but I will send a fire upon his cities (see 2 Kings 18:13: i.e. Judah's), and it shall devour her citadels.