Hosea 6-9 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)
A Call to Repentance
6 Come, let us return to the Lord.
For He has torn us,
and He will heal us;
He has wounded us,
and He will bind up our wounds.
2 He will revive us after two days,
and on the third day He will raise us up
so we can live in His presence.
3 Let us strive to know the Lord.
His appearance is as sure as the dawn.
He will come to us like the rain,
like the spring showers that water the land.
The Lord’s First Lament
4 What am I going to do with you, Ephraim?
What am I going to do with you, Judah?
Your loyalty is like the morning mist
and like the early dew that vanishes.
5 This is why I have used the prophets
to cut them down;
I have killed them with the words of My mouth.
My judgment strikes like lightning.
6 For I desire loyalty and not sacrifice,
the knowledge of God rather than burnt offerings.
7 But they, like Adam, have violated the covenant;
there they have betrayed Me.
8 Gilead is a city of evildoers,
tracked with bloody footprints.
9 Like raiders who wait in ambush for someone,
a band of priests murders on the road to Shechem.
They commit atrocities.
10 I have seen something horrible in the house of Israel:
Ephraim’s promiscuity is there; Israel is defiled.
11 A harvest is also appointed for you, Judah.
When I return My people from captivity,
7 when I heal Israel,
the sins of Ephraim and the crimes of Samaria
will be exposed.
For they practice fraud;
a thief breaks in;
a raiding party pillages outside.
2 But they never consider that I remember all their evil.
Now their sins are all around them;
they are right in front of My face.
3 They please the king with their evil,
the princes with their lies.
4 All of them commit adultery;
they are like an oven heated by a baker
who stops stirring the fire
from the kneading of the dough until it is leavened.
5 On the day of our king,
the princes are sick with the heat of wine—
there is a conspiracy with traitors.
6 For they—their hearts like an oven—
draw him into their oven.
Their anger smolders all night;
in the morning it blazes like a flaming fire.
7 All of them are as hot as an oven,
and they consume their rulers.
All their kings fall;
not one of them calls on Me.
8 Ephraim has allowed himself to get mixed up with the nations.
Ephraim is unturned bread baked on a griddle.
9 Foreigners consume his strength,
but he does not notice.
Even his hair is streaked with gray,
but he does not notice.
10 Israel’s arrogance testifies against them,
yet they do not return to Yahweh their God,
and for all this, they do not seek Him.
11 So Ephraim has become like a silly, senseless dove;
they call to Egypt, and they go to Assyria.
12 As they are going, I will spread My net over them;
I will bring them down like birds of the sky.
I will discipline them in accordance
with the news that reaches their assembly.
The Lord’s Second Lament
13 Woe to them, for they fled from Me;
destruction to them, for they rebelled against Me!
Though I want to redeem them,
they speak lies against Me.
14 They do not cry to Me from their hearts;
rather, they wail on their beds.
They slash themselves for grain and new wine;
they turn away from Me.
15 I trained and strengthened their arms,
but they plot evil against Me.
16 They turn, but not to what is above;
they are like a faulty bow.
Their leaders will fall by the sword
because of the cursing of their tongue.
They will be ridiculed for this in the land of Egypt.
Israel’s False Hopes
8 Put the horn to your mouth!
One like an eagle comes
against the house of the Lord,
because they transgress My covenant
and rebel against My law.
2 Israel cries out to Me,
“My God, we know You!”
3 Israel has rejected what is good;
an enemy will pursue him.
4 They have installed kings,
but not through Me.
They have appointed leaders,
but without My approval.
They make their silver and gold
into idols for themselves
for their own destruction.
5 Your calf-idol is rejected, Samaria.
My anger burns against them.
How long will they be incapable of innocence?
6 For this thing is from Israel—
a craftsman made it, and it is not God.
The calf of Samaria will be smashed to bits!
7 Indeed, they sow the wind
and reap the whirlwind.
There is no standing grain;
what sprouts fails to yield flour.
Even if they did,
foreigners would swallow it up.
8 Israel is swallowed up!
Now they are among the nations
like discarded pottery.
9 For they have gone up to Assyria
like a wild donkey going off on its own.
Ephraim has paid for love.
10 Even though they hire lovers among the nations,
I will now round them up,
and they will begin to decrease in number
under the burden of the king and leaders.
11 When Ephraim multiplied his altars for sin,
they became his altars for sinning.
12 Though I were to write out for him
ten thousand points of My instruction,
they would be regarded as something strange.
13 Though they offer sacrificial gifts
and eat the flesh,
the Lord does not accept them.
Now He will remember their guilt
and punish their sins;
they will return to Egypt.
14 Israel has forgotten his Maker and built palaces;
Judah has also multiplied fortified cities.
I will send fire on their cities,
and it will consume their citadels.
The Coming Exile
9 Israel, do not rejoice jubilantly as the nations do,
for you have acted promiscuously, leaving your God.
You have loved the wages of a prostitute
on every grain-threshing floor.
2 Threshing floor and wine vat will not sustain them,
and the new wine will fail them.
3 They will not stay in the land of the Lord.
Instead, Ephraim will return to Egypt,
and they will eat unclean food in Assyria.
4 They will not pour out
their wine offerings to the Lord,
and their sacrifices will not please Him.
Their food will be like the bread of mourners;
all who eat it become defiled.
For their bread will be for their appetites alone;
it will not enter the house of the Lord.
5 What will you do on a festival day,
on the day of the Lord’s feast?
6 For even if they flee from devastation,
Egypt will gather them, and Memphis will bury them.
Thistles will take possession of their precious silver;
thorns will invade their tents.
7 The days of punishment have come;
the days of retribution have come.
Let Israel recognize it!
The prophet is a fool,
and the inspired man is insane,
because of the magnitude
of your guilt and hostility.
8 Ephraim’s watchman is with my God.
The prophet encounters a fowler’s snare
on all his ways.
Hostility is in the house of his God!
9 They have deeply corrupted themselves
as in the days of Gibeah.
He will remember their guilt;
He will punish their sins.
Ephraim Bereaved of Offspring
10 I discovered Israel
like grapes in the wilderness.
I saw your fathers
like the first fruit of the fig tree in its first season.
But they went to Baal-peor,
consecrated themselves to Shame,
and became detestable,
like the thing they loved.
11 Ephraim’s glory will fly away like a bird:
no birth, no gestation, no conception.
12 Even if they raise children,
I will bereave them of each one.
Yes, woe to them when I depart from them!
13 I have seen Ephraim like Tyre,
planted in a meadow,
so Ephraim will bring out his children
to the executioner.
14 Give them, Lord—
What should You give?
Give them a womb that miscarries
and breasts that are dry!
15 All their evil appears at Gilgal,
for there I came to hate them.
I will drive them from My house
because of their evil, wicked actions.
I will no longer love them;
all their leaders are rebellious.
16 Ephraim is struck down;
their roots are withered;
they cannot bear fruit.
Even if they bear children,
I will kill the precious offspring of their wombs.
17 My God will reject them
because they have not listened to Him;
they will become wanderers among the nations.