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A Call to Repentance

“Come, let us return to the Lord.
He has torn us to pieces;
    now he will heal us.
He has injured us;
    now he will bandage our wounds.
In just a short time he will restore us,
    so that we may live in his presence.
Oh, that we might know the Lord!
    Let us press on to know him.
He will respond to us as surely as the arrival of dawn
    or the coming of rains in early spring.”

“O Israel[a] and Judah,
    what should I do with you?” asks the Lord.
“For your love vanishes like the morning mist
    and disappears like dew in the sunlight.
I sent my prophets to cut you to pieces—
    to slaughter you with my words,
    with judgments as inescapable as light.
I want you to show love,[b]
    not offer sacrifices.
I want you to know me[c]
    more than I want burnt offerings.

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Footnotes

  1. 6:4 Hebrew Ephraim, referring to the northern kingdom of Israel.
  2. 6:6a Greek version translates this Hebrew term as to show mercy. Compare Matt 9:13; 12:7.
  3. 6:6b Hebrew to know God.

Israel Unrepentant

“Come, let us return(A) to the Lord.
He has torn us to pieces(B)
    but he will heal us;(C)
he has injured us
    but he will bind up our wounds.(D)
After two days he will revive us;(E)
    on the third day(F) he will restore(G) us,
    that we may live in his presence.
Let us acknowledge the Lord;
    let us press on to acknowledge him.
As surely as the sun rises,
    he will appear;
he will come to us like the winter rains,(H)
    like the spring rains that water the earth.(I)

“What can I do with you, Ephraim?(J)
    What can I do with you, Judah?
Your love is like the morning mist,
    like the early dew that disappears.(K)
Therefore I cut you in pieces with my prophets,
    I killed you with the words of my mouth(L)
    then my judgments go forth like the sun.[a](M)
For I desire mercy, not sacrifice,(N)
    and acknowledgment(O) of God rather than burnt offerings.(P)

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Footnotes

  1. Hosea 6:5 The meaning of the Hebrew for this line is uncertain.

Come, and let us return unto the Lord: for he hath torn, and he will heal us; he hath smitten, and he will bind us up.

After two days will he revive us: in the third day he will raise us up, and we shall live in his sight.

Then shall we know, if we follow on to know the Lord: his going forth is prepared as the morning; and he shall come unto us as the rain, as the latter and former rain unto the earth.

O Ephraim, what shall I do unto thee? O Judah, what shall I do unto thee? for your goodness is as a morning cloud, and as the early dew it goeth away.

Therefore have I hewed them by the prophets; I have slain them by the words of my mouth: and thy judgments are as the light that goeth forth.

For I desired mercy, and not sacrifice; and the knowledge of God more than burnt offerings.

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