Friday, November 15, 2013

Preparing for a Sermon on Hosea 10

I love the Prophets. I preached 3 sermons on Amos 5 & 7-8 two weeks ago. This Sunday I shall be preaching on Hosea 10. I have been reading a couple of commentaries (NICOT by J. Andrew Dearman) and the excellent small book by Hans Walter Wolff, Confrontation with Prophets. Abraham Heschel's classic on the Prophets is always on my desk for quick reference. I read again for the 4th or 5th time, G. W. Ahlstrom's essay on "Hammoreh Lisedaqah" (trans. "the teacher of righteousness") in Joel and the Temple Cult of Jerusalem (1971) even as JPS (Jewish Publication) Bible translated the Hosea 10:12 passage as "Yhwh shall give you a teacher of righteousness" instead of "rain righteousness on you", following Joel 2:23.

The Hebrew text of Hosea is the second most difficult only to the book of Job in terms of variants and the number of unrecognisable words (so Prof Seow Choon Leong). I read the Septuagint (LXX) of Hosea 10 and used the English translation ed. by Albert Pietersma (2008). On Monday I spent considerable time putting out a sermon outline as the church requested that I sent it by Tuesday. I have come up with a chiastic structure for Hosea 10 with the key word, "king" in Hosea 10:3, 6-7 and the final verse 15. I will probably write up the sermon as much as I can tomorrow and by Sunday I shall be ready by God's grace to deliver one more time His Word to His people.

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