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image of Vetus Testamentum

Hos. x 1-8 is generally seen as an accumulation of dierent prophecies composed without any coherence. A few scholars have pointed to the inclusio constituted by the key-word mizbehôt in vv. 1-2 and 8. The other verses show, however, a similar relationship. So Israel’s prosperity (v. 1a) corresponds with the despair in v. 8b, and the indictment of the kings (vv. 3-4) with their condemnation (v. 7). The calf statue is central: its derision (v. 5) and its being carried away (v. 6). So our pericope offers an example of concentric symmetry (scheme on the preceding page). This construction can help us to solve exegetical questions. So the king of v. 7 cannot be an image of the calf (vv. 5-6): in the light of the corresponding vv. 3-4, the king of v. 7 can only be the real king of Israel.


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