The Rebuke of Israel's Idolatry
8 1 Set the trumpet to thy mouth. [He cometh] as an eagle against the house of Jehovah, because they have transgressed my covenant, and rebelled against my law. 2 They shall cry unto me, My God, we know thee; [we], Israel. 3 Israel hath cast off good: the enemy shall pursue him. 4 They have set up kings, but not by me; they have made princes, and I knew it not; of their silver and their gold have they made them idols, that they may be cut off. 5 Thy calf, O Samaria, hath cast [thee] off; mine anger is kindled against them: how long will they be incapable of purity? 6 For from Israel is this also:—a workman made it, and itis no God: for the calf of Samaria shall be [broken in] pieces. 7 For they have sown the wind, and they shall reap the whirlwind: it hath no stalk; should it sprout, it would yield no meal; if so be it yield, strangers shall swallow it up.
8 Israel is swallowed up: now are they become among the nations as a vessel wherein is no pleasure. 9 For they are gone up [to] Assyria [as] a wild ass alone by himself: Ephraim hath hired lovers. 10 Although they hire among the nations, now will I gather them, and they shall begin to be straitened under the burden of the king of princes. 11 Because Ephraim hath multiplied altars to sin, altars shall be unto him to sin. 12 I have prescribed unto him the manifold things of my law: they are counted [as] a strange thing. 13 They sacrifice flesh [for] the sacrifices of mine offerings, and eat it; Jehovah hath no delight in them. Now will he remember their iniquity, and visit their sins: they shall return to Egypt. 14 For Israel hath forgotten his Maker, and buildeth temples; and Judah hath multiplied fenced cities: but I will send a fire upon his cities, and it shall devour the palaces thereof.
The Punishment for Israel's Persistent Unfaithfulness
9 1 Rejoice not, Israel, exultingly, as the peoples; for thou hast gone a whoring from thy God, thou hast loved harlot's hire upon every corn-floor. 2 The floor and the winepress shall not feed them, and the new wine shall fail her. 3 They shall not dwell in Jehovah's land; but Ephraim shall return to Egypt, and in Assyria shall they eat that which is unclean. 4 They shall pour out no [offerings of] wine to Jehovah, neither shall their sacrifices be pleasing unto him: they shall be unto them as the bread of mourners; all that eat thereof shall be defiled: for their bread shall be for themselves; it shall not come into the house of Jehovah. 5 What will ye do in the day of assembly, and in the day of the feast of Jehovah? 6 For behold, they are gone away because of destruction: Egypt shall gather them up, Moph shall bury them: their pleasant things of silver, nettles shall possess them; thorns shall be in their tents.
7 The days of visitation are come; the days of recompence are come: Israel shall know [it]: the prophet is a fool, the inspired man is mad, because of the greatness of thine iniquity, and the great enmity. 8 Is Ephraim a watchman with my God? [nay] the prophet is a fowler's snare on all his ways, enmity in the house of his God. 9 They have deeply corrupted themselves as in the days of Gibeah. He will remember their iniquity, he will visit their sins. 10 I found Israel as grapes in the wilderness; as first-ripe fruit on the fig-tree, I saw your fathers at the beginning: they went to Baal-Peor, and separated themselves unto that shame, and became abominations like their lover.
11 As for Ephraim, their glory shall fly away as a bird,—no birth, no pregnancy, no conception! 12 For even should they bring up their children, yet will I bereave them, [that] not a man [remain]: for woe also to them when I shall have departed from them! 13 Ephraim, as I saw [him], was a Tyre planted in a beautiful place; but Ephraim shall bring forth his children to the slayer. 14 Give them, Jehovah—what wilt thou give?—give them a miscarrying womb and dry breasts. 15 All their wickedness is in Gilgal; for there I hated them: because of the wickedness of their doings, I will drive them out of my house, I will love them no more: all their princes are rebellious. 16 Ephraim is smitten: their root is dried up, they shall bear no fruit; yea, though they should bring forth, yet will I slay the beloved [fruit] of their womb. 17 My God hath rejected them, because they hearkened not unto him; and they shall be wanderers among the nations.
10 1 Israel is an unpruned vine, he bringeth forth fruit unto himself: according to the abundance of his fruit he hath multiplied altars; according to the goodness of his land they have made goodly statues. 2 Their heart is divided; now shall they be found guilty: he will break down their altars, he will destroy their statues. 3 For now they will say, We have no king, for we feared not Jehovah; and a king, what can he do for us? 4 They speak [mere] words, swearing falsely in making a covenant; therefore shall judgment spring up as hemlock in the furrows of the fields. 5 The inhabitants of Samaria shall fear because of the calf of Beth-aven; for the people thereof shall mourn over it, and the idolatrous priests thereof shall tremble for it, for its glory, because it is departed from it. 6 Yea, it shall be carried unto Assyria [as] a present for king Jareb: Ephraim shall be seized with shame, and Israel shall be ashamed of his own counsel. 7 As for Samaria her king is cut off as chips upon the face of the waters. 8 And the high places of Aven, the sin of Israel, shall be destroyed: the thorn and the thistle shall come up upon their altars; and they shall say to the mountains, Cover us! and to the hills, Fall on us!
9 From the days of Gibeah hast thou sinned, O Israel: there they stood: the battle in Gibeah against the children of iniquity did not overtake them. 10 At my pleasure will I chastise them; and the peoples shall be assembled against them, when they are bound for their two iniquities. 11 And Ephraim is a trained heifer, that loveth to tread out [the corn]; I have passed over upon her fair neck: I will make Ephraim to draw; Judah shall plough, Jacob shall break his clods. 12 Sow to yourselves in righteousness, reap according to mercy; break up your fallow ground: for it is time to seek Jehovah, till he come and rain righteousness upon you. 13 Ye have ploughed wickedness, reaped iniquity, eaten the fruit of lies; for thou didst confide in thy way, in the multitude of thy mighty men. 14 And a tumult shall arise among thy peoples, and all thy fortresses shall be spoiled, as Shalman spoiled Beth-arbel in the day of battle: the mother was dashed in pieces with the children. 15 So shall Bethel do unto you because of the wickedness of your wickedness: at day-break shall the king of Israel utterly be cut off.
God Yearns for His Wayward People
11 1 When Israel was a child, then I loved him, and out of Egypt I called my son. 2 As they called them, so they went from them: they sacrificed unto the Baals, and burned incense to graven images. 3 And I it was that taught Ephraim to walk,—He took them upon his arms,—but they knew not that I healed them. 4 I drew them with bands of a man, with cords of love; and I was to them as they that take off the yoke on their jaws, and I gently caused them to eat. 5 He shall not return into the land of Egypt, but the Assyrian shall be his king; for they refused to return [to me]; 6 and the sword shall turn about in his cities, and shall consume his bars, and devour [them], because of their own counsels. 7 Yea, my people are bent upon backsliding from me: though they call them to the Most High, none at all exalteth [him].
8 How shall I give thee over, Ephraim? [how] shall I deliver thee up, Israel? how shall I make thee as Admah? [how] shall I set thee as Zeboim? My heart is turned within me, my repentings are kindled together. 9 I will not execute the fierceness of mine anger, I will not again destroy Ephraim; for I am God, and not man,—the Holy One in the midst of thee: and I will not come in anger. 10 They shall walk after Jehovah; he shall roar like a lion; when he shall roar, then the children shall hasten from the west: 11 they shall hasten as a bird out of Egypt, and as a dove out of the land of Assyria; and I will cause them to dwell in their houses, saith Jehovah. 12 Ephraim encompasseth me about with lies, and the house of Israel with deceit; but Judah yet walketh with God, and with the holy things of truth.
Ephraim Rebuked for Falsehood and Oppression
12 1 Ephraim feedeth on wind, and pursueth after the east wind: all day long he multiplieth lies and desolation; and they make a covenant with Assyria, and oil is carried into Egypt. 2 Jehovah hath also a controversy with Judah, and he will punish Jacob according to his ways; according to his doings will he recompense him. 3 He took his brother by the heel in the womb, and in his strength he wrestled with God. 4 Yea, he wrestled with the Angel, and prevailed; he wept, and made supplication unto him: he found him in Bethel, and there he spoke with us, 5 —even Jehovah, the God of hosts,—Jehovah is his memorial. 6 And thou, return unto thy God: keep loving-kindness and judgment, and wait on thy God continually.
7 [He is] a merchant, balances of deceit are in his hand; he loveth to oppress. 8 And Ephraim saith, Nevertheless I am become rich, I have found me out substance; in all my labours they shall find none iniquity in me that were sin. 9 But I [that am] Jehovah thy God from the land of Egypt will again make thee to dwell in tents, as in the days of the solemn feast. 10 And I have spoken to the prophets, and I have multiplied visions, and by means of the prophets have I used similitudes. 11 If Gilead is iniquity, surely they are but vanity: they sacrifice bullocks in Gilgal; yea, their altars are as heaps in the furrows of the fields. 12 And Jacob fled into the country of Syria, and Israel served for a wife, and for a wife he kept [sheep]. 13 And by a prophet Jehovah brought Israel out of Egypt, and by a prophet was he preserved. 14 Ephraim provoked [him] to anger most bitterly; and his Lord shall leave his blood upon him, and recompense unto him his reproach.
The Utter Destruction of Ephraim Foretold
13 1 When Ephraim spoke, there was trembling; he exalted himself in Israel: but he trespassed through Baal, and he died. 2 And now they sin more and more, and have made them molten images of their silver, idols according to their own understanding, all of it the work of the craftsmen: they say of them, Let the men that sacrifice kiss the calves. 3 Therefore they shall be as the morning cloud, and as the early dew that passeth away, as the chaff driven with the whirlwind out of the threshing-floor, and as the smoke out of the lattice. 4 Yet I [am] Jehovah thy God from the land of Egypt, and thou hast known no God but me; and there is no saviour besides me.
5 I knew thee in the wilderness, in the land of drought. 6 According to their pasture, they became full; they became full, and their heart was exalted: therefore have they forgotten me. 7 And I will be unto them as a lion; as a leopard I will lurk for them by the way; 8 I will meet them as a bear bereaved of her [whelps], and will rend the covering of their heart, and there will I devour them like a lioness: the beast of the field shall tear them.
9 It is thy destruction, O Israel, that [thou art] against me, against thy help. 10 Where then is thy king, that he may save thee in all thy cities? and thy judges of whom thou saidst, Give me a king and princes?— 11 I gave thee a king in mine anger, and took him away in my wrath. 12 The iniquity of Ephraim is bound up; his sin is laid by in store. 13 The pangs of a woman in travail shall come upon him: he is a son not wise; for at the time of the breaking forth of children, he was not there. 14 I will ransom them from the power of Sheol. I will redeem them from death: where, O death, are thy plagues? where, O Sheol, is thy destruction? Repentance shall be hid from mine eyes. 15 Though he be fruitful among [his] brethren, an east wind shall come, a wind of Jehovah [that] cometh up from the wilderness, and his spring shall become dry, and his fountain shall be dried up: he shall spoil the treasure of all pleasant vessels. 16 Samaria shall bear her guilt; for she hath rebelled against her God: they shall fall by the sword; their infants shall be dashed in pieces, and their women with child shall be ripped up.
Israel Entreated to Return to the LORD
14 1 O Israel, return unto Jehovah thy God; for thou hast fallen by thine iniquity. 2 Take with you words, and turn to Jehovah; say unto him, Forgive all iniquity, and receive [us] graciously; so will we render the calves of our lips. 3 Assyria shall not save us; we will not ride upon horses: neither will we say any more to the work of our hands, [Thou art] our God; because in thee the fatherless findeth mercy.
4 I will heal their backsliding, I will love them freely; for mine anger is turned away from him. 5 I will be as the dew unto Israel: he shall blossom as the lily, and cast forth his roots as Lebanon. 6 His shoots shall spread, and his beauty shall be as the olive-tree, and his smell as Lebanon. 7 They shall return and sit under his shadow; they shall revive [as] corn, and blossom as the vine: the renown thereof shall be as the wine of Lebanon.
8 Ephraim [shall say], What have I to do any more with idols? (I answer [him], and I will observe him.) I am like a green fir-tree.—From me is thy fruit found. 9 Who is wise, and he shall understand these things? intelligent, and he shall know them? For the ways of Jehovah are right, and the just shall walk in them; but the transgressors shall fall therein.