Hosea 1-3 Contemporary English Version (CEV)
2 The Lord said, “Hosea, Israel has betrayed me like an unfaithful wife.[c] Marry such a woman and have children by her.” 3 So I married Gomer the daughter of Diblaim, and we had a son.
4 Then the Lord said, “Hosea, name your son Jezreel,[d] because I will soon punish the descendants of King Jehu of Israel for the murders he committed in Jezreel Valley.[e] I will destroy his kingdom, 5 and in Jezreel Valley I will break the power of Israel.”
6 Later, Gomer had a daughter, and the Lord said, “Name her Lo-Ruhamah,[f] because I will no longer have mercy and forgive Israel. 7 But I am the Lord God of Judah, and I will have mercy and save Judah by my own power—not by wars and arrows or swords and cavalry.”
8 After Gomer had stopped nursing Lo-Ruhamah, she had another son. 9 Then the Lord said, “Name him Lo-Ammi,[g] because these people are not mine, and I am not their God.”
Hope for Israel
10 Someday it will be impossible to count the people of Israel, because there will be as many of them as there are grains of sand along the seashore. They are now called “Not My People,” but in the future they will be called “Children of the Living God.” 11 Israel and Judah will unite and choose one leader. Then they will take back their land, and this will be a great day for Jezreel.[h] 2 1 So let your brothers be called “My People” and your sisters be called “Shown Mercy.”[i]
The Lord Promises To Punish Israel
2 Accuse! Accuse your mother!
6 I, the Lord, will build
9 So I’ll hold back the harvest
11 I’ll stop Israel’s celebrations—
Now I, the Lord, will ruin
13 I’ll punish her for the days
The Lord Will Help Israel
14 Israel, I, the Lord,
16 I promise that from that day on, you will call me your husband instead of your master.[o] 17 I will no longer even let you mention the names of those pagan gods that you called “Master.” 18 And I will agree to let you live in peace—you will no longer be attacked by wild animals and birds or by weapons of war. 19 I will accept you as my wife forever, and instead of a bride price[p] I will give you justice, fairness, love, kindness, 20 and faithfulness. Then you will truly know who I am.
21 I will command the sky to send rain on the earth, 22 and it will produce grain, grapes, and olives in Jezreel Valley. 23 I will scatter the seeds and show mercy to Lo-Ruhamah.[q] I will say to Lo-Ammi,[r] “You are my people,” and they will answer, “You are our God.”
God’s Love Offers Hope
3 Once again the Lord spoke to me. And this time he said, “Hosea, fall in love with an unfaithful woman[s] who has a lover. Do this to show that I love the people of Israel, even though they worship idols and enjoy the offering cakes made with fruit.”
2 So I paid fifteen pieces of silver and about ten bushels of grain for such a woman. 3 Then I said, “Now you are mine! You will have to remain faithful to me, though it will be a long time before we sleep together.”
4 It will also be a long time before Israel has a king or before sacrifices are offered at the temple or before there is any way to get guidance from God. 5 But later, Israel will turn back to the Lord their God and to David their king. At that time they will come to the Lord with fear and trembling, and he will be good to them.
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