Hosea 6:1. Come, let us return, &c. Bishop Horsley considers the prophet as speaking here in his own person, to the end of the 3d verse, and taking occasion, from the intimation of pardon to the penitent, given in the conclusion of the preceding chapter, to address his countrymen in words of mild, pathetic persuasion, and to exhort them to return to the worship and service of God. But many other commentators rather think these are to be considered as the words of the repenting and returning Jews and Israelites in their exile, who, it is said, in the last clause of the foregoing chapter, would in their affliction seek God, which they are here represented as encouraging one another to do, saying, Come, &c. Not only the LXX., but, according to Houbigant, the Arabic, Syriac, and Chaldee, supply the word saying, before this verse. Whether they did this as interpreters, which, says Archbishop Newcome, is my opinion, or whether they read in their copy of the Hebrew text, לאמר , ( saying,) is uncertain. Let us return unto the Lord, &c. He it is who hath brought us into this estate under which we groan; and he is able, if he think fit, to deliver us from it in a short time: nothing is difficult to him. Full of mercy as he is, he will not permit us to continue long in captivity and oppression, wherein we are buried like the dead in the tomb. He hath torn, and he will heal us, &c. The same God that punisheth us can only remove his judgments, and show us mercy. The expression, He hath torn, relates to what was said Hosea 5:14.
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