After this week, this seems appropriate comment on politics:

1 Ah, the proud crown of the drunkards of Ephraim, and the fading flower of its glorious beauty, which is on the head of the rich valley of those overcome with wine!

2 Behold, the Lord has one who is mighty and strong; like a storm of hail, a destroying tempest, like a storm of mighty, overflowing waters, he casts down to the earth with his hand.

3 The proud crown of the drunkards of Ephraim will be trodden underfoot;

4 and the fading flower of its glorious beauty, which is on the head of the rich valley, will be like a first-ripe fig before the summer: when someone sees it, he swallows it as soon as it is in his hand.

5 In that day the LORD of hosts will be a crown of glory, and a diadem of beauty, to the remnant of his people,

6 and a spirit of justice to him who sits in judgment, and strength to those who turn back the battle at the gate.

7 These also reel with wine and stagger with strong drink; the priest and the prophet reel with strong drink, they are swallowed by wine, they stagger with strong drink, they reel in vision, they stumble in giving judgment.

8 For all tables are full of filthy vomit, with no space left.


Gary Smith in the New American Commentary explains:

The prophet’s audience in Judah could learn several basic theological principles from this woe and salvation oracle. They would know that (a) God hates pride and incompetent leaders; (b) he punishes and removes proud and incompetent leaders; (c) people should glorify God (not any earthly place or political institution); and (d) God is a nation’s true source of strength and his justice provides true hope.