on Hosea 8 :6
The workman made it; therefore it is not God - As God signifies the supreme eternal Good, the Creator and Upholder of all things, therefore the workman cannot make Him who made all things. This is an overwhelming argument against all idols. Nothing need be added. The workman has made them; therefore they are not God.
on Hosea 8 :6
For - This verse may assign the reasons of God's displeasure, "mine anger is kindled;" or of Israel's impenitency, "How long will it be?" This indeed is only going a little further back, for Israel's incorrigibleness was the ground of God's displeasure. And they were incorrigible; because they had themselves devised it; "for from Israel was it also." Those are especially incorrigible, who do not fall into error through ignorance, but who through malice devise it out of their own heart. Such persons act and speak, not as seduced by others, but seducing themselves, and condemned by their own judgment. Such were Israel and Jeroboam his king, who were not induced or seduced by others to deem the golden calf to be God, but devised it, of malicious intent, knowing that it was not God. Hence, Israel could be cured of the worship of Baal, for this was brought from without by Jezebel; and "Jehu destroyed Baal out of Israel." But of the sin of the calf they could not be healed. In this sin all the kings of Israel were impenitent.
From Israel was it also - Their boast, that they were of Israel, aggravated their sin. They said to God, we, Israel, know thee. So then their offence, too, their brutishness also, was from those who boasted themselves of bearing the name of their forefather, Israel, who were the chosen people of God, so distinguished by His favor. The name of Israel, suggesting their near relation to God, and the great things which He had done for them, and their solemn covenant with Him to be His people as He was their God, should, in itself, have made them ashamed of such brutishness. So Paul appealeth to us by our name of Christians, "Let every one who nameth the Name of Christ depart from iniquity" 2 Timothy 2:19.
The workman made it, therefore it is not God - The workman was rather a god to his idol, than it to him, for "he" made it; "it" was a thing made. To say that it was made, was to deny that it was God. Hence, the prophets so often urge this special proof of the vanity of idols. No creature can be God. Nor can there be anything, between God and a creature. : "Every substance which is not God is a creature; and that which is not a creature, is God." God Himself could not make a creature who should be God. The Arian heresy, which imagined that God the Son could be a creature and yet an object of our worship, or that there could be a secondary god, was folly as well as blasphemy. They did not conceive what God is. They had low, debased notions of the Godhead. They knew not that the Creator must be removed as infinitely above His most exalted creature, as above the lowest.
Nor do the prophets need any subtleties (such as the pagan alleged) that their idol might be indwelt by some influence. Since God dwelt not in it, any such influence could only come from a creature, and that, an evil one.
The calf of Samaria shall be broken in pieces - The calves were set up at Bethel and at Dan, but they were the sort of tutelar deity of the ten tribes; therefore they are called "the calf of Samaria." They represented one and the same thing; from where they are called as one, the calf, not "calves." A thing of nought it was in its origin, for it had its form and shape from man; a thing of nought it should be in its end, for it should be "broken in pieces," or become "chips, fragments," for fire.
on Hosea 8 :6
8:6 From Israel - By their invention. It - Both the idol and the worshippers of it.