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Hosea 10 New International Reader's Version (NIRV)

10 Israel was like a spreading vine.
    They produced fruit for themselves.
As they grew more fruit,
    they built more altars.
As their land became richer,
    they made more beautiful the sacred stones they worshiped.
Their hearts are dishonest.
    So now they must pay for their sins.
The Lord will tear down their altars.
    He’ll destroy their sacred stones.

Then they’ll say, “We don’t have a king.
    That’s because we didn’t have
    any respect for the Lord.
But suppose we did have a king.
    What could he do for us?”
They make a lot of promises.
    They make agreements among themselves.
    They make promises they don’t mean to keep.
So court cases spring up
    like poisonous weeds in a plowed field.
The people who live in Samaria are filled with fear.
    They are afraid for their god that looks like a calf.
    They’re afraid it will be carried off from Beth Aven, that evil town.
They will mourn over it.
    So will the priests who led them to worship it.
The priests were full of joy
    because their statue was so glorious.
But it will be captured
    and taken far away from them.
It will be carried off to Assyria.
    The people of Ephraim will be forced
    to give it to the great king.
They will be dishonored.
    Israel will be ashamed
    of its agreements with other nations.
Samaria’s king will be destroyed.
    He will be like a twig swept away by a river.
The high places where Israel worshiped other gods
    will be destroyed.
    That’s where they sinned against the Lord.
Thorns and weeds will grow up there.
    They will cover the altars.
Then the people will say to the mountains, “Cover us!”
    They’ll say to the hills, “Fall on us!”

The Lord says,

“Israel, you have done evil things
    ever since your people sinned at Gibeah long ago.
    And you are still doing what is evil.
War will come again
    to those who sinned at Gibeah.
10 I will punish them when I want to.
    Nations will gather together to fight against them.
They will put them in chains
    because they have committed so many sins.
11 Ephraim was like a well-trained young cow.
    It loved to thresh grain.
So I will put a yoke
    on its pretty neck.
I will make Ephraim do hard work.
    Judah also must plow.
So all the people of Jacob
    must break up the ground.
12 Your hearts are as hard as a field
    that has not been plowed.
If you change your ways,
    you will produce good crops.
So plant the seeds of doing what is right.
    Then you will harvest the fruit of your faithful love.
It is time to seek the Lord.
    When you do, he will come
    and shower his blessings on you.
13 But you have planted the seeds of doing what is wrong.
    So you have harvested the fruit of your evil conduct.
    You have had to eat the fruit of your lies.
You have trusted in your own strength.
    You have depended on your many soldiers.
14 But the roar of battle will come against you.
    All your forts will be completely destroyed.
It will happen just as Shalman
    destroyed Beth Arbel in a battle.
Mothers and their children
    were smashed on the ground.
15 People of Bethel, that will happen to you.
    You have committed far too many sins.
When the time comes for me to punish you,
    the king of Israel will be completely destroyed.”

New International Reader's Version (NIRV)

Copyright © 1995, 1996, 1998, 2014 by Biblica, Inc.®. Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Hosea 10 New International Version (NIV)

10 Israel was a spreading vine;
    he brought forth fruit for himself.
As his fruit increased,
    he built more altars;
as his land prospered,
    he adorned his sacred stones.
Their heart is deceitful,
    and now they must bear their guilt.
The Lord will demolish their altars
    and destroy their sacred stones.

Then they will say, “We have no king
    because we did not revere the Lord.
But even if we had a king,
    what could he do for us?”
They make many promises,
    take false oaths
    and make agreements;
therefore lawsuits spring up
    like poisonous weeds in a plowed field.
The people who live in Samaria fear
    for the calf-idol of Beth Aven.[a]
Its people will mourn over it,
    and so will its idolatrous priests,
those who had rejoiced over its splendor,
    because it is taken from them into exile.
It will be carried to Assyria
    as tribute for the great king.
Ephraim will be disgraced;
    Israel will be ashamed of its foreign alliances.
Samaria’s king will be destroyed,
    swept away like a twig on the surface of the waters.
The high places of wickedness[b] will be destroyed—
    it is the sin of Israel.
Thorns and thistles will grow up
    and cover their altars.
Then they will say to the mountains, “Cover us!”
    and to the hills, “Fall on us!”

“Since the days of Gibeah, you have sinned, Israel,
    and there you have remained.[c]
Will not war again overtake
    the evildoers in Gibeah?
10 When I please, I will punish them;
    nations will be gathered against them
    to put them in bonds for their double sin.
11 Ephraim is a trained heifer
    that loves to thresh;
so I will put a yoke
    on her fair neck.
I will drive Ephraim,
    Judah must plow,
    and Jacob must break up the ground.
12 Sow righteousness for yourselves,
    reap the fruit of unfailing love,
and break up your unplowed ground;
    for it is time to seek the Lord,
until he comes
    and showers his righteousness on you.
13 But you have planted wickedness,
    you have reaped evil,
    you have eaten the fruit of deception.
Because you have depended on your own strength
    and on your many warriors,
14 the roar of battle will rise against your people,
    so that all your fortresses will be devastated
as Shalman devastated Beth Arbel on the day of battle,
    when mothers were dashed to the ground with their children.
15 So will it happen to you, Bethel,
    because your wickedness is great.
When that day dawns,
    the king of Israel will be completely destroyed.


  1. Hosea 10:5 Beth Aven means house of wickedness (a derogatory name for Bethel, which means house of God).
  2. Hosea 10:8 Hebrew aven, a reference to Beth Aven (a derogatory name for Bethel); see verse 5.
  3. Hosea 10:9 Or there a stand was taken
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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