“When Israel was a child, I loved him and called him out of Egypt as my son.[a] 2 But the more I[b] called to him, the more he turned away from me.[c] My people sacrificed to Baal; they burned incense to idols. 3 Yet I was the one who taught Israel to walk. I took my people up in my arms,[d] but they did not acknowledge that I took care of them. 4 I drew them to me with affection and love. I picked them up and held them to my cheek; I bent down to them and fed them.[e]
5 “They refuse to return to me, and so they must return to Egypt, and Assyria will rule them. 6 War will sweep through their cities and break down the city gates. It will destroy my people because they do what they themselves think best. 7 They insist on turning away from me. They will cry out because of the yoke that is on them, but no one will lift it from them.[f]
8 “How can I give you up, Israel? How can I abandon you? Could I ever destroy you as I did Admah, or treat you as I did Zeboiim? My heart will not let me do it! My love for you is too strong. 9 I will not punish you in my anger; I will not destroy Israel again. For I am God and not a mere human being. I, the Holy One, am with you. I will not come to you in anger.
Hosea 11:1him, and called him … son; or him; from the time he left Egypt I have called him my son.
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