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    “Whenever I want to heal Israel,
    all I can see is Ephraim’s sin and Samaria’s wickedness.
        People cheat each other.
        They break into houses and steal.
        They rob people in the streets.
        They don’t realize that I remember
            all the evil things they’ve done.
                Now their sins surround them.
                    Their sins are in my presence.

“They make kings happy with the wicked things they do.
They make officials happy with the lies they tell.
    They all commit adultery.
        They are like a heated oven,
            an oven so hot that a baker doesn’t have to fan its flames
                when he makes bread.
On the day of the king’s celebration,
    the officials become drunk from wine,
        and the king joins mockers.
They become hot like an oven while they lie in ambush.
    All night long their anger smolders,
        but in the morning it burns like a raging fire.
They are all as hot as an oven.
    They consume their judges like a fire.
        All their kings die in battle, and none of them calls to me.

Israel Turns to Other Nations for Help

“Ephraim mixes with other nations.
Ephraim, you are like a half-baked loaf of bread.
    Foreigners are using up your strength, but you don’t realize it.
    You have become a gray-haired, old man, but you don’t realize it.
10 Israel, your arrogance testifies against you,
    but even after all this, you don’t turn to the Lord your God
        or look to him for help.
11 Ephraim, you are like a silly, senseless dove.
    You call for Egypt and run to Assyria for help.
12         When you go, I will spread my net over you.
            I will snatch you out of the air like a bird.
            I will punish you for all the evil things you have done.

13 “How horrible it will be for these people.
    They have run away from me.
    They must be destroyed because they’ve rebelled against me.
        I want to reclaim them, but they tell lies about me.
14     They don’t pray to me sincerely,
        even though they cry in their beds
            and make cuts on their bodies
                while praying for grain and new wine.
    They have turned against me.
15         I trained them and made them strong.
            Yet, they plan evil against me.
16 They don’t return to the Most High.
    They are like a defective bow.
        Their officials will die in battle
            because they curse.
                The people in Egypt will ridicule them for this.

whenever I would heal Israel,
the sins of Ephraim are exposed
    and the crimes of Samaria revealed.(A)
They practice deceit,(B)
    thieves break into houses,(C)
    bandits rob in the streets;(D)
but they do not realize
    that I remember(E) all their evil deeds.(F)
Their sins engulf them;(G)
    they are always before me.

“They delight the king with their wickedness,
    the princes with their lies.(H)
They are all adulterers,(I)
    burning like an oven
whose fire the baker need not stir
    from the kneading of the dough till it rises.
On the day of the festival of our king
    the princes become inflamed with wine,(J)
    and he joins hands with the mockers.(K)
Their hearts are like an oven;(L)
    they approach him with intrigue.
Their passion smolders all night;
    in the morning it blazes like a flaming fire.
All of them are hot as an oven;
    they devour their rulers.
All their kings fall,(M)
    and none of them calls(N) on me.

“Ephraim mixes(O) with the nations;
    Ephraim is a flat loaf not turned over.
Foreigners sap his strength,(P)
    but he does not realize it.
His hair is sprinkled with gray,
    but he does not notice.
10 Israel’s arrogance testifies against him,(Q)
    but despite all this
he does not return(R) to the Lord his God
    or search(S) for him.

11 “Ephraim is like a dove,(T)
    easily deceived and senseless—
now calling to Egypt,(U)
    now turning to Assyria.(V)
12 When they go, I will throw my net(W) over them;
    I will pull them down like the birds in the sky.
When I hear them flocking together,
    I will catch them.
13 Woe(X) to them,
    because they have strayed(Y) from me!
Destruction to them,
    because they have rebelled against me!
I long to redeem them
    but they speak about me(Z) falsely.(AA)
14 They do not cry out to me from their hearts(AB)
    but wail on their beds.
They slash themselves,[a] appealing to their gods
    for grain and new wine,(AC)
    but they turn away from me.(AD)
15 I trained(AE) them and strengthened their arms,
    but they plot evil(AF) against me.
16 They do not turn to the Most High;(AG)
    they are like a faulty bow.(AH)
Their leaders will fall by the sword
    because of their insolent(AI) words.
For this they will be ridiculed(AJ)
    in the land of Egypt.(AK)

Footnotes

  1. Hosea 7:14 Some Hebrew manuscripts and Septuagint; most Hebrew manuscripts They gather together

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