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God Loves Israel

11 “When Israel was a young child I loved him,
    and from Egypt I called my son.
The more I called out to them,
    the farther they fled from me;[a]
they sacrificed to Baals,[b]
    burning incense to carved images.
Yet it was I who taught Ephraim to walk,
    supporting them by their arms,
        but they never knew that I was healing them.
I guided them with human kindness,
    with loving reins.
I acted toward them
    like one who removes a yoke from their neck;
        I bent down and fed them.

“They will not return to the land of Egypt;
    instead, the Assyrian will be their king,
        because they kept refusing to repent.
The sword will fall on their cities,
    consuming and devouring their fortified gates,[c]
        despite their planning.
My people are determined to turn away from me;
    though they call to the Most High,
        no one is worshiping.

“How can I give up on you, Ephraim?
    I will deliver you, will I not, Israel?
How can I treat you like Admah?
    I can’t make you like Zeboim,[d] can I?
My heart stirs within me;
    my compassion also fans into flame!
I will not act in my anger;
    I will not return to destroy Ephraim,
For I am God,
    and not a human—
the Holy One among you—
    so I will not enter the city in anger.[e]
10 They will go after the Lord,
    who will roar like a lion;
and when he roars,
    the children will come trembling from the west.
11 Trembling like a bird, they will come out of Egypt,
    and as a dove from the land of Assyria;
and I will settle them in their houses,”
    declares the Lord.

12 [f]“Ephraim surrounds me with lies,
    and the house of Israel surrounds me[g] with deceit,
But Judah still rules with God,
    and remains faithful, along with the godly ones.”


  1. Hosea 11:2 So LXX. MT reads They called to them, so they went away from them.
  2. Hosea 11:2 I.e. Canaanite deities
  3. Hosea 11:6 Lit. devouring the bars
  4. Hosea 11:8 cf. Deut 29:23
  5. Hosea 11:9 The Heb. lacks in anger
  6. Hosea 11:12 This v. is 12:1 in MT
  7. Hosea 11:12 The Heb. lacks surrounds me