Hosea announces special judgment against Israel’s spiritual leaders–the priests and prophets.
The role of the A priest is a person who has the authority to perform religious rites. In New Testament times priests were responsible for daily offerings and sacrifices in the temple. More and prophet was to teach people the ways of the Lord and to inculcate proper knowledge of God–how to live, how to treat the neighbor, how to avoid oppression, how to worship only the Lord. Because the spiritual leaders of the people have failed in this role, God will no longer know them. Hosea announces: “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge, because you [O Priest] have rejected knowledge” (4:6).