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Hosea



Hosea, chapter 11, New English Translation

Chapter 11


   Reversal of the Exodus: Return to Egypt and Exile in Assyria
   1 When Israel was a young man, I loved him like a son, and I summoned my son out of Egypt.
   2 But the more I summoned them, the farther they departed from me. They sacrificed to the Baal idols and burned incense to images.
   3 Yet it was I who led Ephraim, I took them by the arm; but they did not acknowledge that I had healed them.
   4 I led them with leather cords, with leather ropes; I lifted the yoke from their neck, and gently fed them.
   5 They will return to Egypt! Assyria will rule over them because they refuse to repent!
   6 A sword will flash in their cities, it will destroy the bars of their city gates, and will devour them in their fortresses.
   7 My people are obsessed with turning away from me; they call to Baal, but he will never exalt them!
   The Divine Dilemma: Judgment or Mercy?
   8 How can I give you up, O Ephraim? How can I surrender you, O Israel? How can I treat you like Admah? How can I make you like Zeboiim? I have had a change of heart! All my tender compassions are aroused!
   9 I cannot carry out my fierce anger! I cannot totally destroy Ephraim! Because I am God, and not man - the Holy One among you - I will not come in wrath!
   God Will Restore the Exiles to Israel
   10 He will roar like a lion, and they will follow the LORD; when he roars, his children will come trembling from the west.
   11 They will return in fear and trembling like birds from Egypt, like doves from Assyria, and I will settle them in their homes, " declares the LORD.
   God's Lawsuit against Israel: Breach of Covenant
   12 (12:1) Ephraim has surrounded me with lies; the house of Israel has surrounded me with deceit. But Judah still roams about with God; he remains faithful to the Holy One.
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