14 “Unfaithful people, come back; you belong to me. I will take one of you from each town and two from each clan, and I will bring you back to Mount Zion. 15 I will give you rulers who obey me, and they will rule you with wisdom and understanding. 16 Then when you have become numerous in that land, people will no longer talk about my Covenant Box. They will no longer think about it or remember it; they will not even need it, nor will they make another one. 17 When that time comes, Jerusalem will be called ‘The Throne of the Lord,’ and all nations will gather there to worship me. They will no longer do what their stubborn and evil hearts tell them. 18 Israel will join with Judah, and together they will come from exile in the country in the north and will return to the land that I gave your ancestors as a permanent possession.”
The Idolatry of God's People
19 The Lord says,
“Israel, I wanted to accept you as my child and give you a delightful land, the most beautiful land in all the world. I wanted you to call me father and never again turn away from me. 20 But like an unfaithful wife, you have not been faithful to me. I, the Lord, have spoken.”
21 A noise is heard on the hilltops: it is the people of Israel crying and pleading because they have lived sinful lives and have forgotten the Lord their God. 22 Return, all of you who have turned away from the Lord; he will heal you and make you faithful.
You say, “Yes, we are coming to the Lord because he is our God. 23 We were not helped at all by our pagan worship on the hilltops. Help for Israel comes only from the Lord our God. 24 But the worship of Baal, the god of shame, has made us lose flocks and herds, sons and daughters—everything that our ancestors have worked for since ancient times. 25 We should lie down in shame and let our disgrace cover us. We and our ancestors have always sinned against the Lord our God; we have never obeyed his commands.”
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