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Hosea 5:8 [study!]

American Standard Version (ASV 1901) [2]
— Blow ye the cornet in Gibeah, and the trumpet in Ramah: sound an alarm at Beth-aven; behind thee, O Benjamin.
King James Version (KJV 1769)
— Blow ye the cornet in Gibeah, [and] the trumpet in Ramah: cry aloud [at] Bethaven, after thee, O Benjamin.
New American Standard Bible (NASB ©1995)
— Blow the horn in Gibeah, The trumpet in Ramah. Sound an alarm at Beth-aven: “Behind you, Benjamin!”
Webster's Revision of the KJB (WEB 1833)
— Blow ye the cornet in Gibeah, [and] the trumpet in Ramah: cry aloud [at] Beth-aven, after thee, O Benjamin.
Darby's Translation (DBY 1890)
— Blow the horn in Gibeah, the trumpet in Ramah; cry aloud [at] Beth-aven: behind thee, O Benjamin!
Rotherham's Emphasized Bible (EBR 1902)
— Blow ye a horn in Gibeah, a trumpet in Ramah,—sound an alarm at Beth-aven, behind thee, O Benjamin!
Young's Literal Translation (YLT 1898)
— Blow ye a cornet in Gibeah, a trumpet in Ramah, Shout, O Beth-Aven, after thee, O Benjamin.
Douay-Rheims Challoner Revision (DR 1750)
— Blow ye the cornet in Gabaa, the trumpet in Rama: howl ye in Bethaven, behind thy back, O Benjamin.
Original King James Bible (AV 1611) [2]
— Blow yee the cornet in Gibeah, [and] the trumpet in Ramah: cry alowd at Beth-auen: after thee, O Beniamin.
Brenton Greek Septuagint (LXX, Restored Names)
— Blow ye the trumpet on the hills, sound aloud on the heights: proclaim in the house of On, Benjamin is amazed.
Full Hebrew Names / Holy Name KJV (2008) [2] [3]
— Blow ye the cornet in Givah, [and] the trumpet in Ramah: cry aloud [at] Beth Awen, after thee, O Binyamin.

Strong's Numbers & Hebrew NamesHebrew Old TestamentColor-Code/Key Word Studies
Blow 8628
{8628} Prime
A primitive root; to clatter, that is, slap (the hands together), clang (an instrument); by analogy to drive (a nail or tent pin, a dart, etc.); by implication to become bondsman (by handclasping).
<8798> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Imperative (See H8810)
Count - 2847
ye the cornet 7782
{7782} Prime
From H8231 in the original sense of incising; a cornet (as giving a clear sound) or curved horn.
in Giv` גִּבעָה, 1390
{1390} Prime
The same as H1389; Gibah; the name of three places in Palestine.
[and] the trumpet 2689
{2689} Prime
By reduplication from H2690; a trumpet (from its sundered or quavering note).
in Rm רָמָה: 7414
{7414} Prime
The same as H7413; Ramah, the name of four places in Palestine.
cry aloud 7321
{7321} Prime
A primitive root; to mar (especially by breaking); figuratively to split the ears (with sound), that is, shout (for alarm or joy).
<8685> Grammar
Stem - Hiphil (See H8818)
Mood - Imperative (See H8810)
Count - 731
[at] B wen בֵּית־אָוֶן, 1007
{1007} Prime
בֵּית אָוֶן
Beyth 'Aven
{bayth aw'-ven}
From H1004 and H0205; house of vanity; Beth-Aven, a place in Palestine.
after 310
{0310} Prime
From H0309; properly the hind part; generally used as an adverb or conjugation, after (in various senses).
thee, O Binymn בִּניָמִין. 1144
{1144} Prime
From H1121 and H3225; son of (the) right hand; Binjamin, youngest son of Jacob; also the tribe descended from him, and its territory.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Commentary

Hosea 5:8

_ _ The arrival of the enemy is announced in the form of an injunction to blow an alarm.

_ _ cornet ... trumpet — The “cornet” was made of the curved horn of animals and was used by shepherds. The “trumpet” was of brass or silver, straight, and used in wars and on solemn occasions. The Hebrew is hatzotzerah, the sound imitating the trumpet note (Hosea 8:1; Numbers 10:2; Jeremiah 4:5; Joel 2:1).

_ _ Gibeah ... Ramah — both in Benjamin (Isaiah 10:29).

_ _ Beth-aven — in Benjamin; not as in Hosea 4:15; Beth-el, but a town east of it (Joshua 7:2). “Cry aloud,” namely, to raise the alarm. “Benjamin” is put for the whole southern kingdom of Judah (compare Hosea 5:5), being the first part of it which would meet the foe advancing from the north. “After thee, O Benjamin,” implies the position of Beth-aven, behind Benjamin, at the borders of Ephraim. When the foe is at Beth-aven, he is at Benjamin’s rear, close upon thee, O Benjamin (Judges 5:14).

Matthew Henry's Commentary

Hosea 5:8-15

_ _ Here is, I. A loud alarm sounded, giving notice of judgments coming (Hosea 5:8): Blow you the cornet in Gibeah and in Ramah, two cities near together in the confines of the two kingdoms of Judah and Israel, Gibeah a frontier-town of the kingdom of Judah, Ramah of Israel; so that the warning is hereby sent into both kingdoms. “Cry aloud at Beth-aven, or Bethel, which place seems to be already seized upon by the enemy, and therefore the trumpet is not sounded there, but you hear the outcries of those that shout for mastery, mixed with theirs that are overcome.” Let them cry aloud,After thee, O Benjamin! comes the enemy. The tribe of Ephraim is already vanquished, and the enemy will be upon thy back, O Benjamin! in a little time; thy turn comes next. The cup of trembling shall go round.” The prophet had described God's controversy with them as a trial at law (Hosea 4:1); here he describes it as a trial by battle; and here also when he judges he will overcome. Let all therefore prepare to meet their God. He had before spoken of the judgments as certain; here he speaks of them as near; and, when they are apprehended as just at the door, they are very startling and awakening. The blowing of this cornet is explained, Hosea 5:9. Among the tribes of Israel have I made known that which shall surely be, that which is true or certain, so the word is. Note, The destruction of impenitent sinners is a thing which shall surely be; it is not mere talk, to frighten them, but it is an irrevocable sentence. And it is a mercy to us that it is made known to us, that we have timely warning given us of it, that we may flee from the wrath to come. It is the privilege of the tribes of Israel that, as they are told their duty, so they are told their danger, by the oracles of God committed to them.

_ _ II. The ground of God's controversy with them. 1. He has a quarrel with the princes of Judah, because they were daring leaders in sin, Hosea 5:10. They are like those that remove the bound, or the ancient land-marks. God has given them his law, to be a fence about his own property; but they have sacrilegiously broken through it, and set it aside; they have encroached even upon God's rights, have trampled upon the distinctions between good and evil, and the most sacred obligations of reason and equity, thinking, because they were princes, that they might do any thing, Quicquid libet, licet — Their will was a law. Or it may be understood of their invading the liberty and property of the subject for the advancing of the prerogative, which was like removing the ancient land-marks. Some have observed that the princes of Judah were more absolute, and assumed a more arbitrary power, than the princes of Israel did; now, for this, God has a controversy with them: I will pour out my wrath upon them like water, in great abundance, like the waters of the flood, which were poured upon the giants of the old world, for the violence which the earth was filled with through them, Genesis 6:13. Note, There are bounds which even princes themselves must not remove, bounds both of religion and justice, which they are limited by, and, if they break through them, they must know that there is a God above them that will call them to account for it. 2. He has a quarrel with the people of Ephraim, because they were sneaking followers in sin (Hosea 5:11): He willingly walked after the commandment, that is, the commandment of Jeroboam and the succeeding kings of Israel, who obliged all their subjects by a law to worship the calves at Dan and Bethel, and never to go up to Jerusalem to worship. This was the commandment; it was the law of the land, and backed with reasons of state; and the people not only walked after it in a blind implicit obedience to authority, but they willingly walked after it, from a secret antipathy they had to the worship of idols. Note, An easy compliance with the commandments of men that thwart the commandments of God ripens a people for ruin as much as any thing. And the punishment of the sequacious disobedience (if I may so call it) answers to the sin; for it is for this that Ephraim is oppressed and broken in judgment, has all his civil rights and liberties broken in upon and trodden down; and, (1.) It is just with God that it should be so, that those who betray God's property should lose their own, that those who subject their consciences to an infallible judge, and an arbitrary power, should have enough of both. (2.) There is a natural tendency in the thing itself towards it. Those that willingly walk after the commandment, even when it walks contrary to the command of God, will find the commandment an encroaching thing, and that the more power is given it the more it will claim. Note, Nothing gives greater advantage to a mastiff-like tyranny, that is fierce and furious, than a spaniel-like submission, that is fawning and flattering. Thus is Ephraim oppressed and broken in judgment, that is, he is wronged under a face and colour of right. Note, It is a sad and sore judgment upon any people to be oppressed under pretence of having justice done them. This explains the threatening Hosea 5:9, Ephraim shall be desolate in the day of rebuke. Note, Daring sinners must expect that a day of rebuke will come, and such a day of rebuke as will make them desolate, will deprive them of the comfort of all they have and all they hope for.

_ _ III. The different methods that God would take both with Judah and Ephraim, sometimes one method and sometimes the other, and sometimes both together, or rather by which, first the one and then the other, he would advance towards their complete ruin.

_ _ 1. He would begin with less judgments, which should sometimes work silently and insensibly (Hosea 5:12): I will be (that is, my providences shall be) unto Ephraim as a moth; nay (as it might better be supplied), they are unto Ephraim as a moth, for it is such a sickness as Ephraim now sees, Hosea 5:13. Note, The judgments of God are sometimes to a sinful people as a moth, and as rottenness, or as a worm. The former signifies the little animals that breed in clothes, the latter those that breed in wood; as these consume the clothes and the wood, so shall the judgments of God consume them. (1.) Silently, so as not to make any noise in the world, nay, so as they themselves shall not be sensible of it; they shall think themselves safe and thriving, but, when they come to look more narrowly into their state, shall find themselves wasting and decaying. (2.) Slowly, and with long delays and intervals, that he may give them space to repent. Many a nation, as well as many a person, in the prime of its time, dies of a consumption. (3.) Gradually. God comes upon sinners with less judgments, so to prevent greater, if they will be wise and take warning; he comes upon them step by step, to show he is not willing that they should perish. (4.) The moth breeds in the clothes, and the worm or rottenness in the wood; thus sinners are consumed by a fire of their own kindling.

_ _ 2. When it appeared that those had not done their work he would come upon them with greater (Hosea 5:14): I will be unto Ephraim as a lion, and to the house of Judah as a young lion, though Judah is himself, in Jacob's blessing, a lion's whelp. Lest any should think his power weakened, because he was said to be as a moth to them, he says that he will now be as a lion to them, not only to frighten them with his roaring, but to pull them to pieces. Note, If less judgments prevail not to do their work, it may be expected that God will send greater. Christ is sometimes a lion of the tribe of Judah, here he is a lion against that tribe. See what God will do to a people that are secure in sin: Even I will tear. He seems to glory in it, as his prerogative, to be able to destroy, as the alone lawgiver, James 4:12. “I, even I, will take the work into my own hands; I say it that will do it.” There is a more immediate work of God in some judgments than in others. I will tear, and go away. He will go away, (1.) As not fearing them; he will go away in state, and with a majestic face, as the lion from his prey. (2.) As not helping them. If God tear by afflicting providences, and yet by his graces and comforts stays with us, it is well enough; but our condition is sad indeed if he tear and go away, if, when he deprives us of our creature comforts, he does himself depart from us. When he goes away he will take away all that is valuable and dear, for, when God goes, all good goes along with him. He will take away, and none shall rescue him, as the prey cannot be rescued from the lion, Micah 5:8. Note, None can be delivered out of the hands of God's justice but those that are delivered into the hands of his grace. It is in vain for a man to strive with his Maker.

_ _ IV. The different effects of those different methods. 1. When God contended with them by less judgments they neglected him, and sought to creatures for relief, but sought in vain, Hosea 5:13. When God was to them as a moth, and as rottenness, they perceived their sickness and their wound; after a while they found themselves going down the hill, and that they were behind — hand in their affairs, their estate was sensibly decaying, and then they sent to the Assyrian, to come in to their assistance, made their court to king Jareb, which some think, was one of the names of Pul, or Tiglathpileser, kings of Assyria, to whom both Israel and Judah applied for relief in their distress, hoping by an alliance with them to repair and re-establish their declining interests. Note, Carnal hearts, in time of trouble, see their sickness and see their wound, but do not see the sin that is the cause of it, nor will be brought to acknowledge that, no, nor to acknowledge the hand of God, his mighty hand, much less his righteous hand, in their trouble; and therefore, instead of going the next way to the Creator, who could relieve them, they take a great deal of pains to go about to creatures, who can do them no service. Those who repent not that they have offended God by their sins are loth to be beholden to him in their afflictions, but would rather seek relief any where than with him. And what is the consequence? Yet could he not heal you, nor cure you of your wound. Note, Those who neglect God, and seek to creatures for help, will certainly be disappointed; those who depend upon them for support will find them, not foundations, but broken reeds; those who depend upon them for supply will find them, not fountains, but broken cisterns; those who depend upon them for comfort and a cure will find them miserable comforters, and physicians of no value. The kings of Assyria, whom Judah and Israel sought unto, distressed them and helped them not, 2 Chronicles 28:16, 2 Chronicles 28:22. Some make king Jareb to signify the great, potent, or magnificent king, for they built much upon his power; others the king that will plead, or should plead, for they built much upon his wisdom and eloquence, and in his interesting himself in their affairs. They had sent him a present (Hosea 10:6), a good fee, and, having so retained him of counsel for them, they doubted not of his fidelity to them; but he deceived them, as an arm of flesh does those that trust in it, Jeremiah 17:5, Jeremiah 17:6. 2. When, to convince them of their folly, God brought greater judgments upon them, then they would at length be forced to apply to him, Hosea 5:15. When he has torn as a lion, (1.) He will leave them: I will go and return to my place, to heaven, or to the mercy-seat, the throne of grace, which is his glory. When God punishes sinners he comes out of his place (Isaiah 26:21); but, when he designs them favour, he returns to his place, where he waits to be gracious, upon their submission. Or he will return to his place when he has corrected them, as not regarding them, hiding his face from them, and not taking notice of their troubles or prayers; and this for their further humiliation, till they are qualified in some measure for the returns of his favour. (2.) He will at length work upon them, and bring them home to himself, by their afflictions, which is the thing he waits for; and then he will no longer withdraw from them. Two things are here mentioned as instances of their return: — [1.] Their penitent confession of sin: Till they acknowledge their offence; marg. Till they be guilty, that is, till they be sensible of their guilt, and be brought to own it, and humble themselves before God for it. Note, When men begin to complain more of their sins than of their afflictions then there begins to be some hope of them; and this is that which God requires of us, when we are under his correcting hand, that we own ourselves in a fault and justly corrected. [2.] Their humble petition for the favour of God: Till they seek my face, which, it may be expected, they will do when they are brought to the last extremity, and they have tried other helpers in vain. In their affliction they will seek me early, that is, diligently and earnestly, and with great importunity; and if they seek him thus, and be sincere in it, though it might be called seeking him late, because it was long ere they were brought to it, yet it is not too late, nay, he is pleased to call it seeking him early, so willing is he to make the best of true penitents in their return to him. Note, When we are under the convictions of sin, and the corrections of the rod, our business is to seek God's face; we must desire the knowledge of him, and an acquaintance with him, that he may manifest himself to us, and for us, in token of his being at peace with us. And it may reasonably be expected that affliction will bring those to God that had long gone astray from him, and kept at a distance. Therefore God for a time turns away from us, that he may turn us to himself, and then return to us. Is any among you afflicted? Let him pray.

John Wesley's Explanatory Notes

Hosea 5:8

Blow ye — Ye watchmen, sound the alarm, the enemy cometh. After thee, O Benjamin — After thy cries. After thee, O Beth — aven, let Benjamin also cry aloud: for they shall also fall for their sin.

Geneva Bible Translation Notes

Hosea 5:8

Blow ye the cornet in Gibeah, [and] the trumpet in Ramah: cry aloud [at] Bethaven, after thee, O (h) Benjamin.

(h) That is, all of Israel that was included under this tribe, signifying that the Lord's plagues would pursue them from place to place until they were destroyed.

Cross-Reference Topical ResearchStrong's Concordance

Hosea 8:1 [Set] the trumpet to thy mouth. [He shall come] as an eagle against the house of the LORD, because they have transgressed my covenant, and trespassed against my law.
Jeremiah 4:5 Declare ye in Judah, and publish in Jerusalem; and say, Blow ye the trumpet in the land: cry, gather together, and say, Assemble yourselves, and let us go into the defenced cities.
Jeremiah 6:1 O ye children of Benjamin, gather yourselves to flee out of the midst of Jerusalem, and blow the trumpet in Tekoa, and set up a sign of fire in Bethhaccerem: for evil appeareth out of the north, and great destruction.
Joel 2:1 Blow ye the trumpet in Zion, and sound an alarm in my holy mountain: let all the inhabitants of the land tremble: for the day of the LORD cometh, for [it is] nigh at hand;
Joel 2:15 Blow the trumpet in Zion, sanctify a fast, call a solemn assembly:


Hosea 9:9 They have deeply corrupted [themselves], as in the days of Gibeah: [therefore] he will remember their iniquity, he will visit their sins.
Hosea 10:9 O Israel, thou hast sinned from the days of Gibeah: there they stood: the battle in Gibeah against the children of iniquity did not overtake them.
Judges 19:12-15 And his master said unto him, We will not turn aside hither into the city of a stranger, that [is] not of the children of Israel; we will pass over to Gibeah. ... And they turned aside thither, to go in [and] to lodge in Gibeah: and when he went in, he sat him down in a street of the city: for [there was] no man that took them into his house to lodging.
Judges 20:4-6 And the Levite, the husband of the woman that was slain, answered and said, I came into Gibeah that [belongeth] to Benjamin, I and my concubine, to lodge. ... And I took my concubine, and cut her in pieces, and sent her throughout all the country of the inheritance of Israel: for they have committed lewdness and folly in Israel.
1 Samuel 15:34 Then Samuel went to Ramah; and Saul went up to his house to Gibeah of Saul.
2 Samuel 21:6 Let seven men of his sons be delivered unto us, and we will hang them up unto the LORD in Gibeah of Saul, [whom] the LORD did choose. And the king said, I will give [them].
Isaiah 10:29 They are gone over the passage: they have taken up their lodging at Geba; Ramah is afraid; Gibeah of Saul is fled.


1 Samuel 7:17 And his return [was] to Ramah; for there [was] his house; and there he judged Israel; and there he built an altar unto the LORD.
1 Samuel 8:4 Then all the elders of Israel gathered themselves together, and came to Samuel unto Ramah,
1 Samuel 15:34 Then Samuel went to Ramah; and Saul went up to his house to Gibeah of Saul.


Hosea 4:15 Though thou, Israel, play the harlot, [yet] let not Judah offend; and come not ye unto Gilgal, neither go ye up to Bethaven, nor swear, The LORD liveth.
Hosea 10:5 The inhabitants of Samaria shall fear because of the calves of Bethaven: for the people thereof shall mourn over it, and the priests thereof [that] rejoiced on it, for the glory thereof, because it is departed from it.
Hosea 10:8 The high places also of Aven, the sin of Israel, shall be destroyed: the thorn and the thistle shall come up on their altars; and they shall say to the mountains, Cover us; and to the hills, Fall on us.
Joshua 7:2 And Joshua sent men from Jericho to Ai, which [is] beside Bethaven, on the east side of Bethel, and spake unto them, saying, Go up and view the country. And the men went up and viewed Ai.
1 Kings 12:29 And he set the one in Bethel, and the other put he in Dan.


Judges 5:14 Out of Ephraim [was there] a root of them against Amalek; after thee, Benjamin, among thy people; out of Machir came down governors, and out of Zebulun they that handle the pen of the writer.
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Jsh 7:2. Jg 5:14; 19:12; 20:4. 1S 7:17; 8:4; 15:34. 2S 21:6. 1K 12:29. Is 10:29. Jr 4:5; 6:1. Ho 4:15; 8:1; 9:9; 10:5, 8, 9. Jol 2:1, 15.

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