When Israel was a youth I loved him,
And out of Egypt I called My son.
The more they called them,
The more they went away from them;
They kept sacrificing to the Baals
And burning incense to idols.
Yet it is I who taught Ephraim to walk,
I took them in My arms;
But they did not know that I healed them.
I pulled them along with cords of a man, with ropes of love,
And I became to them as one who lifts the yoke from their jaws;
And I bent down and fed them.
They will not return to the land of Egypt;
But Assyria—he will be their king
Because they refused to return to Me.
And the sword will whirl against their cities,
And will destroy their oracle priests
And consume them, because of their counsels.
So My people are determined to turn from Me.
Though they call them to the One on high,
None at all exalts Him.
How can I give you up, Ephraim?
How can I surrender you, Israel?
How can I make you like Admah?
How can I treat you like Zeboiim?
My heart is turned over within Me,
All My compassions are kindled.
I will not carry out My fierce anger;
I will not destroy Ephraim again.
For I am God and not a man, the Holy One in your midst,
And I will not come in wrath.
They will walk after the Lord,
He will roar like a lion;
Indeed He will roar,
And His sons will come trembling from the west.
They will come trembling like birds from Egypt,
And like doves from the land of Assyria;
And I will settle them in their houses, declares the Lord.
Ephraim surrounds Me with lies
And the house of Israel with deceit;
Judah is still unruly against God,
Even against the Holy One who is faithful.
Ephraim feeds on wind,
And pursues the east wind continually;
He multiplies lies and violence.
Moreover, he makes a covenant with Assyria,
And oil is brought to Egypt.
The Lord also has a case against Judah,
And will punish Jacob according to his ways;
He will repay him according to his deeds.
In the womb he took his brother by the heel,
And in his mature strength he contended with God.
Yes, he wrestled with the angel and prevailed;
He wept and implored His favor.
He found Him at Bethel,
And there He spoke with us,
And the Lord, the God of armies,
The Lord is His name.
So as for you, return to your God,
Maintain kindness and justice,
And wait for your God continually.
A merchant, in whose hands are fraudulent balances,
Loves to exploit.
And Ephraim said, “I have certainly become rich,
I have found wealth for myself;
In all my labors they will find in me
No wrongdoing, which would be sin.”
But I have been the Lord your God since the land of Egypt;
I will make you live in tents again,
As in the days of the appointed festival.
I have also spoken to the prophets,
And I provided many visions,
And through the prophets I spoke in parables.
Is there injustice in Gilead?
Certainly they are worthless.
In Gilgal they sacrifice bulls,
Yes, their altars are like stone heaps
Beside the furrows of a field.
Now Jacob fled to the land of Aram,
And Israel worked for a wife,
And for a wife he kept sheep.
But by a prophet the Lord brought Israel up from Egypt,
And by a prophet he was protected.
Ephraim has provoked God to bitter anger;
So his Lord will leave his guilt for bloodshed on him
And bring his disgrace back to him.