Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Religion & Culture / Religious Studies


Faculty of Arts

First Advisor

Lawrence Toombs

Advisor Role

Thesis Supervisor


Hosea’s Contribution to Israel’s Covenant Thought is an exploration of the unique contribution that Hosea made to the development of Israel’s covenant understanding. The study begins by surveying the meaning and development of covenant thought in the Old Testament with particular reference to the “gracious” and “conditional” divisions. It then examines Hosea’s understanding of covenant based upon the concepts of emet, hesed, and da ‘at Elohim concluding that Hosea perceived covenant as a relationship of steadfast love. This relationship originates in the incomprehensible love of God and is central to Hosea’s whole message. Hosea’s use of the marriage image to depict God’s covenant relationship with Israel is then considered. While the use of this image is a bold advance in prophetic language, it proves to be eminently suited to Hosea’s message. A possible origin for the image is proposed and a parallel to it in the father-son image (Hosea 11) is considered. The thesis concludes that Hosea’s unique contribution is his development of God’s covenant with Israel in terms of love.

Convocation Year


Convocation Season