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God’s Love for Israel

11 “When Israel was a child, I loved him,
    and I called my son out of Egypt.
But when I called the people of Israel,
    they went away from me.
They offered sacrifices to the Baals
    and burned incense to the idols.
It was I who taught Israel to walk,
    and I took them by the arms,
but they did not understand
    that I had healed them.
I led them with cords of human kindness,
    with ropes of love.
I lifted the yoke from their neck
    and bent down and fed them.

“The Israelites will become captives again, as they were in Egypt,
    and Assyria will become their king,
    because they refuse to turn back to God.
War will sweep through their cities
    and will destroy them
    and kill them because of their wicked plans.
My people have made up their minds
    to turn away from me.
The prophets call them to turn to me,
    but none of them honors me at all.

“Israel, how can I give you up?
    How can I give you away, Israel?
I don’t want to make you like Admah
    or treat you like Zeboiim.[a]
My heart beats for you,
    and my love for you stirs up my pity.
I won’t punish you in my anger,
    and I won’t destroy Israel again.
I am God and not a human;
    I am the Holy One, and I am among you.
    I will not come against you in anger.
10 They will go after the Lord,
    and he will roar like a lion.
When he roars,
    his children will hurry to him from the west.
11 They will come swiftly
    like birds from Egypt
    and like doves from Assyria.
I will settle them again in their homes,”
    says the Lord.

The Lord Is Against Israel

12 Israel has surrounded me with lies;
    the people have made evil plans.
And Judah turns against God,
    the faithful Holy One.


  1. 11:8 Admah . . . Zeboiim Two other cities destroyed when God destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah.

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.