Hosea 11:7

And my people are bent to backsliding from me: though they called them to the most High, none at all would exalt him.

And my people are bent to backsliding from me,.... There is a propensity in thorn to it, through prevailing corruption in them; they are inclined unto it, the bias of their minds is that way; they are bent upon it, and pertinaciously abide in it; nor will they be reclaimed from it, by all the means and methods made use of, even though they had been, and professed themselves to be the people of God. Some understand this, not of their backsliding and aversion from God; but either of his return to them, or of their return to him, rendering the words, "and my people are in suspense" {a}; like a man that hangs in the air, as Aben Ezra, neither ascends nor descends; that is, they are in doubt of what should be done to thorn, or they themselves should do: either "about my return" {b}; that is, to them; whether after all they may expect that God would be kind and merciful to them, so Abarbinel: or "about return to me" {c}; whether they should or not, inclining rather not to return. So the Targum,

"my people divide (or hesitate) to return to my law;''

with which Jarchi agrees, paraphrasing it,

"when the prophets instruct them to return unto me, they are in suspense whether to return or not;''

but Aben Ezra and Kimchi observe the word is always used in a bad sense, of aversion or backsliding, and that the word is in another form when used for repentance or returning;

though they called them to the most High; that is, the prophets of the Lord called them to turn from their idols, and return to the most high God, the true and the living God, from whom they had backslidden, and to his true worship, they had neglected and forsaken:

none at all would exalt him; the most high God, and give him the praise and glory due to his name; but, on the other hand, extolled their idols, and ascribed all their good things to them: or "none would exalt them" {d} the prophets of the Lord that called them; would not give that honour to them that was due to their office, or pay any regard to them, or to their admonitions and advice, but depreciated them, and reproached and persecuted them: or "none at all would lift up": that is, their head, as Aben Ezra, toward the heaven, and to God in it, to whom they were called; but kept looking on the earth, and to earthly things, particularly to their idols; and did not lift up or erect their ears, to hearken to what was said to them, but were deaf to all counsel and reproof. The Targum is,

"they walked not in an erect stature.''

Agreeably to which the former clause may be rendered, as by some, "and they called them to things above"; but none would look upwards;

See Gill on "Hosea 7:16".

{a} Myawlt "suspensi haerent", Junius & Tremellius; "suspensi", Montanus, Schmidt.
{b} ytbwvml "ad reditum meum", V. L.
{c} "Circa redire ad me", Castalio.
{d} Mmwry al "eos non exaltabit", Schmidt.