This is the way God put it: “They found grace out in the desert, these people who survived the killing. Israel, out looking for a place to rest, met God out looking for them!” God told them, “I’ve never quit loving you and never will. Expect love, love, and more love! And so now I’ll start over with you and build you up again, dear virgin Israel. You’ll resume your singing, grabbing tambourines and joining the dance. You’ll go back to your old work of planting vineyards on the Samaritan hillsides, And sit back and enjoy the fruit— oh, how you’ll enjoy those harvests! The time’s coming when watchmen will call out from the hilltops of Ephraim: ‘On your feet! Let’s go to Zion, go to meet our God!’”
This is what the Eternal has to say: Eternal One: There will come a time when I will be the God of all the clans and families of Israel, and they will be My people. This is what I, the Eternal One, declare to you: My people who survived the sword found grace as they wandered in the wilderness; When Israel went in search of rest, I appeared to them from far away and said: “I have loved you with an everlasting love— out of faithfulness I have drawn you close.
(From) Far (off) the Lord appeared to me, and in everlasting charity I loved thee; therefore I doing mercy drew thee. (From far away/From long ago the Lord appeared to me, and said, I loved thee with an everlasting love; and so I doing mercy drew thee to me.)
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