God Yearns over His People

11 When Israel was a youth I loved him,
And (A)out of Egypt I (B)called My son.
The more [a](C)they called them,
The more they went away from [b]them;
They kept (D)sacrificing to the Baals
And (E)burning incense to idols.
Yet it is I who taught Ephraim to walk,
[c]I (F)took them in My arms;
But they did not know that I (G)healed them.
I (H)pulled them along with cords of a man, with ropes of love,
And (I)I became to them as one who lifts the yoke from their jaws;
And I bent down and (J)fed them.

[d]They will not return to the land of Egypt;
But Assyria—he will be [e]their king
Because they (K)refused to return to Me.
And the (L)sword will whirl against [f]their cities,
And will destroy [g]their oracle priests
And (M)consume them, because of their (N)counsels.
So My people are determined to (O)turn from Me.
Though [h]they call [i]them to the One on high,
None at all exalts Him.

(P)How can I give you up, Ephraim?
How can I surrender you, Israel?
How can I [j]make you like (Q)Admah?
How can I treat you like (R)Zeboiim?
My heart is turned over within Me,
[k]All My compassions are kindled.
I will (S)not carry out My fierce anger;
I will not destroy Ephraim (T)again.
For (U)I am God and not a man, the (V)Holy One in your midst,
And I will not come in [l]wrath.
10 They will (W)walk after the Lord,
He will (X)roar like a lion;
Indeed He will roar,
And His sons will come (Y)trembling from the west.
11 They will come trembling like birds from (Z)Egypt,
And like (AA)doves from the land of (AB)Assyria;
And I will (AC)settle them in their houses, declares the Lord.

12 [m]Ephraim surrounds Me with (AD)lies
And the house of Israel with deceit;
[n]Judah is still unruly against God,
Even against the Holy One who is faithful.


  1. Hosea 11:2 I.e., God’s prophets
  2. Hosea 11:2 I.e., God’s prophets
  3. Hosea 11:3 As in ancient versions; MT He...His
  4. Hosea 11:5 Lit He
  5. Hosea 11:5 Lit his
  6. Hosea 11:6 Lit his
  7. Hosea 11:6 Lit his
  8. Hosea 11:7 I.e., God’s prophets
  9. Hosea 11:7 Lit him; i.e., Israel
  10. Hosea 11:8 Lit give
  11. Hosea 11:8 Lit Together
  12. Hosea 11:9 Lit agitation
  13. Hosea 11:12 Ch 12:1 in Heb
  14. Hosea 11:12 Or But Judah still goes about with God, even with

God’s Love for Israel

11 “When Israel was a child,(A) I loved(B) him,
    and out of Egypt I called my son.(C)
But the more they were called,
    the more they went away from me.[a](D)
They sacrificed to the Baals(E)
    and they burned incense to images.(F)
It was I who taught Ephraim to walk,
    taking them by the arms;(G)
but they did not realize
    it was I who healed(H) them.
I led them with cords of human kindness,
    with ties of love.(I)
To them I was like one who lifts
    a little child to the cheek,
    and I bent down to feed(J) them.(K)

“Will they not return to Egypt(L)
    and will not Assyria(M) rule over them
    because they refuse to repent?(N)
A sword(O) will flash in their cities;
    it will devour(P) their false prophets
    and put an end to their plans.
My people are determined to turn(Q) from me.(R)
    Even though they call me God Most High,
    I will by no means exalt them.

“How can I give you up,(S) Ephraim?(T)
    How can I hand you over, Israel?
How can I treat you like Admah?
    How can I make you like Zeboyim?(U)
My heart is changed within me;
    all my compassion(V) is aroused.(W)
I will not carry out my fierce anger,(X)
    nor will I devastate(Y) Ephraim again.
For I am God, and not a man(Z)
    the Holy One(AA) among you.
    I will not come against their cities.
10 They will follow the Lord;
    he will roar(AB) like a lion.(AC)
When he roars,
    his children will come trembling(AD) from the west.(AE)
11 They will come from Egypt,
    trembling like sparrows,
    from Assyria,(AF) fluttering like doves.(AG)
I will settle them in their homes,”(AH)
    declares the Lord.

Israel’s Sin

12 Ephraim has surrounded me with lies,(AI)
    Israel with deceit.
And Judah is unruly against God,
    even against the faithful(AJ) Holy One.[b](AK)


  1. Hosea 11:2 Septuagint; Hebrew them
  2. Hosea 11:12 In Hebrew texts this verse (11:12) is numbered 12:1.