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Hosea 11:5...Please explain

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  • Hosea 11:5...Please explain

    So, I've been reading through the book of Hosea, and I came across this verse:

    Hosea 11:5 He (Israel) shall not return to the land of Egypt
    But the Assyrian shall be his king
    because they refused to repent

    This is how it reads in the New King James version, which I typically use. Well, I wanted to compare translations for another verse, and I referenced the New Revised Standard version, in addition to the NKJV....just so I could get a broader scope. Here's how verse 5 reads in the NRSV:

    They shall return to the land of Egypt,
    and Assyria shall be their king,
    because they have refused to return to me

    So, according to the NKJV, Israel shall not return to Egypt, while the NRSV says that Israel shall return. This seems like a pretty blatant contradiction to me. What's the deal with this discrepancy, and which version is correct?!

    Could someone please explain this? Is the NRSV a bad translation, or is there something deeper that I'm missing?

    Thank you

  • #2
    Originally posted by Welder4Christ View Post
    So, I've been reading through the book of Hosea, and I came across this verse:

    Hosea 11:5 He (Israel) shall not return to the land of Egypt
    But the Assyrian shall be his king
    because they refused to repent

    This is how it reads in the New King James version, which I typically use. Well, I wanted to compare translations for another verse, and I referenced the New Revised Standard version, in addition to the NKJV....just so I could get a broader scope. Here's how verse 5 reads in the NRSV:

    They shall return to the land of Egypt,
    and Assyria shall be their king,
    because they have refused to return to me

    So, according to the NKJV, Israel shall not return to Egypt, while the NRSV says that Israel shall return. This seems like a pretty blatant contradiction to me. What's the deal with this discrepancy, and which version is correct?!

    Could someone please explain this? Is the NRSV a bad translation, or is there something deeper that I'm missing?

    Thank you
    Hos 11:5 He shall not return to the land of Egypt, but he of Assyria shall be his king, because they refused to return.
    Hos 11:6 And the sword shall whirl in his cities, and shall bring to an end his bars, and shall consume, because of their own counsels.
    Hos 11:7 And My people are bent on backsliding from Me. And they call him to the Most High; no one at all would exalt Him.
    Literal version


    I donít have an NRSV, but history shows that they did not return to Egypt but were exiled into Assyria - and (perhaps until recently) have not even returned to the land of Israel.

    Comment


    • #3
      I personally go with what the King James Version says...

      5He shall not return into the land of Egypt, and the Assyrian shall be his king, because they refused to return.
      6And the sword shall abide on his cities, and shall consume his branches, and devour them, because of their own counsels.
      7And my people are bent to backsliding from me: though they called them to the most High, none at all would exalt him.
      8How shall I give thee up, Ephraim? how shall I deliver thee, Israel? how shall I make thee as Admah? how shall I set thee as Zeboim? mine heart is turned within me, my repentings are kindled together.
      Courtney

      Psalm 100
      Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all ye lands.
      Serve the LORD with gladness: come before his presence with singing.
      Know ye that the LORD he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.
      Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name.
      For the LORD is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Richard H View Post
        Hos 11:5 He shall not return to the land of Egypt, but he of Assyria shall be his king, because they refused to return.
        Hos 11:6 And the sword shall whirl in his cities, and shall bring to an end his bars, and shall consume, because of their own counsels.
        Hos 11:7 And My people are bent on backsliding from Me. And they call him to the Most High; no one at all would exalt Him.
        Literal version


        I donít have an NRSV, but history shows that they did not return to Egypt but were exiled into Assyria - and (perhaps until recently) have not even returned to the land of Israel.
        Richard;

        Thank you so much for your response.

        Yes, I agree. Historically, the Israelites never returned to Egypt, so I am just wondering why the NRSV translation would change the wording in such a drastic way like that?! Are they referring to a spiritual Egypt?

        If the original language wasn't speaking in that context, I really don't understand why the translators would take it upon themselves to change the wording like that.

        Comment


        • #5
          Other helpful Scriptures:
          • 1 Kings 11
          • 2 Kings 17
          • Jeramiah 3
          Thereafter the two kingdoms were known as: Israel and Judah.
          Togather as: Jacob or the whole house of Isreal.

          It facinates me because Jesus said:
          "I was sent only to the lost sheep of Israel."Mat 15:24


          Richard

          Comment


          • #6
            The beginning of Hosea 11:5 is best translated as a rhetorical question, 'Will not Israel return to the land of Egypt?' The verse refers to the end of Israel's Egyptian exile and the beginning of her Assyrian exile. The NRSV is good because it emphasizes that there will be an Assyrian exile that's similar to the one Israel experienced in Egypt. The NKJV and other versions are emphasizing that there will not be a return to Egyptian exile. Both translations exphasize different aspects of the prophecy. Neither one is necessarily right or 'wrong.'

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Welder4Christ View Post
              Richard;

              Thank you so much for your response.

              Yes, I agree. Historically, the Israelites never returned to Egypt, so I am just wondering why the NRSV translation would change the wording in such a drastic way like that?! Are they referring to a spiritual Egypt?

              If the original language wasn't speaking in that context, I really don't understand why the translators would take it upon themselves to change the wording like that.
              I think it may be a printing typo.
              As for Egypt, they were always wanting to go back there when things got tough. I think it was a contrast - in that things were going to get even tougher.

              Richard

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by scourge39 View Post
                The beginning of Hosea 11:5 is best translated as a rhetorical question, 'Will not Israel return to the land of Egypt?'
                Then why is it printed as a statement?

                Comment


                • #9
                  I checked an online NRSV and says they will return to Egypt.
                  http://bible.thelineberrys.com/HOS/HOS11.HTM

                  'Seems like they are wrong, since all the other versions say the other.

                  Good eye for catching it though.

                  Richard

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Welder4Christ View Post
                    Richard;

                    Thank you so much for your response.

                    Yes, I agree. Historically, the Israelites never returned to Egypt, so I am just wondering why the NRSV translation would change the wording in such a drastic way like that?! Are they referring to a spiritual Egypt?

                    If the original language wasn't speaking in that context, I really don't understand why the translators would take it upon themselves to change the wording like that.
                    A literal translation of the Hebrew simply doesn't read very well in English. Many other passages are like that. Words sometimes need to be moved around because their order makes no sense in English. Sometimes no explicit subject or direct object is given and phrases represent full sentences. Translators sometimes supply words so they'll make sense to English readers. Biblical translation is an art, not a science.

                    Comment

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