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God’s Love for Israel

11 When Israel was a child, I loved him,
    and out of Egypt I called My son.
As I[a] called them,
    so they went from Me.[b]
They sacrificed to the Baals
    and burned incense to idols.
I taught Ephraim to walk,
    taking them up in My[c] arms,
but they did not know
    that I healed them.
I drew them with cords of human kindness,[d]
    with bands of love.
I was to them as those who ease the yoke on their neck,[e]
    and I bent down and fed them.

He will return[f] to the land of Egypt,
    and Assyria will be his king,
    because they refused to return to Me.
The sword slashes in their cities,
    consumes their oracle-priests,
    and devours because of their own counsels.
My people are bent on backsliding from Me.
    Though they called to the Most High,
    none at all exalt Him.

How can I give you up, Ephraim?
    How can I hand you over, Israel?
How can I make you like Admah?
    How can I treat you like Zeboyim?
My heart churns within Me;
    My compassion is stirred.
I will not execute the fierceness of My anger;
    I will not again destroy Ephraim.
For I am God, and not man,
    the Holy One in your midst,
    and I will not come in wrath.
10 They will walk after the Lord,
    who roars like a lion.
When He roars,
    His children will come trembling from the west.
11 They will come trembling
    like a bird out of Egypt
    and like a dove from the land of Assyria.
And I will let them dwell in their houses,
    says the Lord.

God’s Charge Against Ephraim

12 Ephraim has surrounded Me with lies,
    and the house of Israel with deceit.
But Judah still walks with God,
    and is faithful to the Holy One.[g]


  1. Hosea 11:2 Gk.; Heb. they.
  2. Hosea 11:2 Gk.; Heb. them.
  3. Hosea 11:3 Gk. Syr. Vulg.; Heb. his.
  4. Hosea 11:4 Heb. cords of a man.
  5. Hosea 11:4 Or jaws.
  6. Hosea 11:5 So LXX. Heb. He not will return.
  7. Hosea 11:12 Or holy ones.