God’s Continuing Love for Israel

11 “When Israel was a [a]child, I loved him,
And out of Egypt (A)I called My (B)son.
[b]As they called them,
So they (C)went [c]from them;
They sacrificed to the Baals,
And burned incense to carved images.

“I(D) taught Ephraim to walk,
Taking them by [d]their arms;
But they did not know that (E)I healed them.
I drew them with [e]gentle cords,
With bands of love,
And (F)I was to them as those who take the yoke from their [f]neck.
(G)I stooped and fed them.

“He shall not return to the land of Egypt;
But the Assyrian shall be his king,
Because they refused to repent.
And the sword shall slash in his cities,
Devour his districts,
And consume them,
Because of their own counsels.
My people are bent on (H)backsliding from Me.
Though [g]they call [h]to the Most High,
None at all exalt Him.

“How(I) can I give you up, Ephraim?
How can I hand you over, Israel?
How can I make you like (J)Admah?
How can I set you like Zeboiim?
My heart [i]churns within Me;
My sympathy is stirred.
I will not execute the fierceness of My anger;
I will not again destroy Ephraim.
(K)For I am God, and not man,
The Holy One in your midst;
And I will not [j]come with terror.

10 “They shall walk after the Lord.
(L)He will roar like a lion.
When He roars,
Then His sons shall come trembling from the west;
11 They shall come trembling like a bird from Egypt,
(M)Like a dove from the land of Assyria.
(N)And I will let them dwell in their houses,”
Says the Lord.

God’s Charge Against Ephraim

12 “Ephraim has encircled Me with lies,
And the house of Israel with deceit;
But Judah still walks with God,
Even with the [k]Holy One who is faithful.

Ephraim’s Sins Rebuked by God

12 “Ephraim (O)feeds on the wind,
And pursues the east wind;
He daily increases lies and [l]desolation.
(P)Also they make a [m]covenant with the Assyrians,
And (Q)oil is carried to Egypt.

“The(R) Lord also brings a [n]charge against Judah,
And will punish Jacob according to his ways;
According to his deeds He will recompense him.
He took his brother (S)by the heel in the womb,
And in his strength he (T)struggled with God.
Yes, he struggled with the Angel and prevailed;
He wept, and sought favor from Him.
He found Him in (U)Bethel,
And there He spoke to us—
That is, the Lord God of hosts.
The Lord is His (V)memorable name.
(W)So you, by the help of your God, return;
Observe mercy and justice,
And wait on your God continually.

“A cunning [o]Canaanite!
(X)Deceitful scales are in his hand;
He loves to oppress.
And Ephraim said,
(Y)‘Surely I have become rich,
I have found wealth for myself;
In all my labors
They shall find in me no iniquity that is sin.’

“But I am the Lord your God,
Ever since the land of Egypt;
(Z)I will again make you dwell in tents,
As in the days of the appointed feast.
10 (AA)I have also spoken by the prophets,
And have multiplied visions;
I have given [p]symbols [q]through the witness of the prophets.”

11 Though (AB)Gilead has idols—
Surely they are [r]vanity—
Though they sacrifice bulls in (AC)Gilgal,
Indeed their altars shall be heaps in the furrows of the field.

12 Jacob (AD)fled to the country of Syria;
(AE)Israel served for a spouse,
And for a wife he tended sheep.
13 (AF)By a prophet the Lord brought Israel out of Egypt,
And by a prophet he was preserved.
14 Ephraim (AG)provoked Him to anger most bitterly;
Therefore his Lord will leave the guilt of his bloodshed upon him,
(AH)And return his reproach upon him.

Relentless Judgment on Israel

13 When Ephraim spoke, trembling,
He exalted himself in Israel;
But when he offended through Baal worship, he died.
Now they sin more and more,
And have made for themselves molded images,
Idols of their silver, according to their skill;
All of it is the work of craftsmen.
They say of them,
“Let [s]the men who sacrifice [t]kiss the calves!”
Therefore they shall be like the morning cloud
And like the early dew that passes away,
(AI)Like chaff blown off from a threshing floor
And like smoke from a chimney.

“Yet (AJ)I am the Lord your God
Ever since the land of Egypt,
And you shall know no God but Me;
For (AK)there is no savior besides Me.
(AL)I [u]knew you in the wilderness,
(AM)In the land of [v]great drought.
(AN)When they had pasture, they were filled;
They were filled and their heart was exalted;
Therefore they forgot Me.

“So (AO)I will be to them like a lion;
Like (AP)a leopard by the road I will lurk;
I will meet them (AQ)like a bear deprived of her cubs;
I will tear open their rib cage,
And there I will devour them like a lion.
The [w]wild beast shall tear them.

“O Israel, [x]you are destroyed,
But [y]your help is from Me.
10 [z]I will be your King;
(AR)Where is any other,
That he may save you in all your cities?
And your judges to whom (AS)you said,
‘Give me a king and princes’?
11 (AT)I gave you a king in My anger,
And took him away in My wrath.

12 “The(AU) iniquity of Ephraim is bound up;
His sin is stored up.
13 (AV)The sorrows of a woman in childbirth shall come upon him.
He is an unwise son,
For he should not stay long where children are born.

14 “I will ransom them from the [aa]power of [ab]the grave;
I will redeem them from death.
(AW)O Death, [ac]I will be your plagues!
O [ad]Grave, [ae]I will be your destruction!
(AX)Pity is hidden from My eyes.”

15 Though he is fruitful among his brethren,
(AY)An east wind shall come;
The wind of the Lord shall come up from the wilderness.
Then his spring shall become dry,
And his fountain shall be dried up.
He shall plunder the treasury of every desirable prize.
16 Samaria [af]is held guilty,
For she has (AZ)rebelled against her God.
They shall fall by the sword,
Their infants shall be dashed in pieces,
And their women with child (BA)ripped open.

Israel Restored at Last

14 O Israel, (BB)return to the Lord your God,
For you have stumbled because of your iniquity;
Take words with you,
And return to the Lord.
Say to Him,
“Take away all iniquity;
Receive us graciously,
For we will offer the (BC)sacrifices[ag] of our lips.
Assyria shall (BD)not save us,
(BE)We will not ride on horses,
Nor will we say anymore to the work of our hands, ‘You are our gods.’
(BF)For in You the fatherless finds mercy.”

“I will heal their (BG)backsliding,
I will (BH)love them freely,
For My anger has turned away from him.
I will be like the (BI)dew to Israel;
He shall [ah]grow like the lily,
And [ai]lengthen his roots like Lebanon.
His branches shall [aj]spread;
(BJ)His beauty shall be like an olive tree,
And (BK)his fragrance like Lebanon.
(BL)Those who dwell under his shadow shall return;
They shall be revived like grain,
And [ak]grow like a vine.
Their [al]scent shall be like the wine of Lebanon.

“Ephraim shall say, ‘What have I to do anymore with idols?’
I have heard and observed him.
I am like a green cypress tree;
(BM)Your fruit is found in Me.”

Who is wise?
Let him understand these things.
Who is prudent?
Let him know them.
For (BN)the ways of the Lord are right;
The righteous walk in them,
But transgressors stumble in them.

Footnotes

  1. Hosea 11:1 Or youth
  2. Hosea 11:2 So with MT, Vg.; LXX Just as I called them; Tg. interprets as I sent prophets to a thousand of them.
  3. Hosea 11:2 So with MT, Tg., Vg.; LXX from My face
  4. Hosea 11:3 Some Heb. mss., LXX, Syr., Vg. My arms
  5. Hosea 11:4 Lit. cords of a man
  6. Hosea 11:4 Lit. jaws
  7. Hosea 11:7 The prophets
  8. Hosea 11:7 Or upward
  9. Hosea 11:8 Lit. turns over
  10. Hosea 11:9 Or enter a city
  11. Hosea 11:12 Or holy ones
  12. Hosea 12:1 ruin
  13. Hosea 12:1 Or treaty
  14. Hosea 12:2 A legal complaint
  15. Hosea 12:7 Or merchant
  16. Hosea 12:10 Or parables
  17. Hosea 12:10 Lit. by the hand
  18. Hosea 12:11 worthless
  19. Hosea 13:2 Or those who offer human sacrifice
  20. Hosea 13:2 Worship with kisses
  21. Hosea 13:5 Cared for you
  22. Hosea 13:5 Lit. droughts
  23. Hosea 13:8 Lit. beast of the field
  24. Hosea 13:9 Lit. it or he destroyed you
  25. Hosea 13:9 Lit. in your help
  26. Hosea 13:10 LXX, Syr., Tg., Vg. Where is your king?
  27. Hosea 13:14 Lit. hand
  28. Hosea 13:14 Or Sheol
  29. Hosea 13:14 LXX where is your punishment?
  30. Hosea 13:14 Or Sheol
  31. Hosea 13:14 LXX where is your sting?
  32. Hosea 13:16 LXX shall be disfigured
  33. Hosea 14:2 Lit. bull calves; LXX fruit
  34. Hosea 14:5 Lit. bud or sprout
  35. Hosea 14:5 Lit. strike
  36. Hosea 14:6 Lit. go
  37. Hosea 14:7 Lit. bud or sprout
  38. Hosea 14:7 Lit. remembrance