Hosea 2

1“Then you will tell your brothers, 'You are my people.’ And you will tell your sisters, 'He has shown mercy to you.’” 2“Argue with your mother. Argue! Because she is not my wife! I am not her husband! Tell her to stop being like a prostitute. Tell her to take away her lovers from between her breasts. 3˻If she refuses to stop her adultery,˼ I will strip her naked. I will leave her like the day she was born. ˻I will take away her people˼ and she will be like an empty, dry desert. I will kill her with thirst. 4I will have no pity on her children because they are the children of prostitution. 5Their mother has acted like a prostitute. Their mother should be ashamed of the things she did. She said, 'I will go to my lovers. My lovers give me food and water. They give me wool and linen. They give me wine and olive oil.’ 6“So, I ˻(the Lord) will block your ˻(Israel’s)˼ road with thorns. I will build a wall. Then she will not be able to find her paths. 7She will run after her lovers, but she will not be able to catch up with them. She will look for her lovers, but she will not be able to find them. Then she will say, 'I will go back to my first husband ˻(God)˼. Life was better for me when I was with him. Life was better then than it is now.’ 8“She ˻(Israel)˼ didn’t know that I ˻(the Lord)˼ was the One who gave her grain, wine, and oil. I kept giving her more and more silver and gold. But the Israelites used this silver and gold to make statues of Baal. 9So I will come back. I will take back my grain at the time it is ready to be harvested. I will take back my wine at the time the grapes are ready. I will take back my wool and linen. I gave those things to her so she could cover her naked body. 10Now I will strip her. She will be naked, so all her lovers can see her. No person will be able to save her from my power. 11I ˻(God)˼ will take away all her fun. I will stop her holidays, her new moon feasts, her days of rest. I will stop all of her special feasts. 12I will destroy her vines and fig trees. She said, 'My lovers gave these things to me.’ But I will change her gardens—they will become like a wild forest. Wild animals will come and eat from those plants. 13“She served the Baals. So I will punish her. She burned incense to the Baals. She dressed up—she put on her jewelry and nose ring. Then she went to her lovers and forgot me.” The Lord has said this. 14“So, I ˻(the Lord)˼ will say romantic words to her. I will lead her into the desert and speak tender words. 15There I will give her fields of grapes. I will give her Achor Valley as a doorway of hope. Then she will answer like the time she came out of the land of Egypt.” 16The Lord says this. “At that time you will call me 'My husband.’ You will not call me 'My Baal.’ 17I will take away the names of the Baals out of her mouth. Then people will not use the Baals’ names again. 18“At that time, I will make an agreement for the Israelites with the animals of the field, with the birds of the sky, and with the crawling things on the ground. I will break the bow, the sword, and weapons of war. ˻No weapons will be left˼ in that land. I will make the land safe, so the people of Israel can lie down in peace. 19And I ˻(the Lord)˼ will make you my bride forever. I will make you my bride with goodness and fairness and with love and mercy. 20I will make you my faithful bride. Then you will truly know the Lord. 21And at that time, I will respond.” The Lord says this. “I will speak to the skies, and they will give rain to the earth. 22The earth will produce grain, wine, and oil. And they will meet Jezreel’s needs. 23I will sow her many seeds on her land. To Lo-Ruhamah, I will show mercy. To Lo-Ammi, I will say, 'You are my people.’ And they will say to me, 'You are my God.’”

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