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12:1 Ephraim feeds on the windand pursues the east wind all day long;they multiply falsehood and violence;they make a covenant with Assyria,and oil is carried to Egypt.
The Lord’s Indictment of Israel and Judah2 The Lord has an indictment against Judahand will punish Jacob according to his ways;he will repay him according to his deeds.
3 In the womb he took his brother by the heel,and in his manhood he strove with God.
4 He strove with the angel and prevailed;he wept and sought his favor.He met God at Bethel,and there God spoke with us—
5 the Lord, the God of hosts,the Lord is his memorial name:
6 “So you, by the help of your God, return,hold fast to love and justice,and wait continually for your God.”
7 A merchant, in whose hands are false balances,he loves to oppress.
8 Ephraim has said, “Ah, but I am rich;I have found wealth for myself;in all my labors they cannot find in me iniquity or sin.”
9 I am the Lord your Godfrom the land of Egypt;I will again make you dwell in tents,as in the days of the appointed feast.
10 I spoke to the prophets;it was I who multiplied visions,and through the prophets gave parables.
11 If there is iniquity in Gilead,they shall surely come to nothing:in Gilgal they sacrifice bulls;their altars also are like stone heapson the furrows of the field.
12 Jacob fled to the land of Aram;there Israel served for a wife,and for a wife he guarded sheep.
13 By a prophet the Lord brought Israel up from Egypt,and by a prophet he was guarded.
14 Ephraim has given bitter provocation;so his Lord will leave his bloodguilt on himand will repay him for his disgraceful deeds.
The Lord’s Relentless Judgment on Israel13:1 When Ephraim spoke, there was trembling;he was exalted in Israel,but he incurred guilt through Baal and died.
2 And now they sin more and more,and make for themselves metal images,idols skillfully made of their silver,all of them the work of craftsmen.It is said of them,“Those who offer human sacrifice kiss calves!”
3 Therefore they shall be like the morning mistor like the dew that goes early away,like the chaff that swirls from the threshing flooror like smoke from a window.
4 But I am the Lord your Godfrom the land of Egypt;you know no God but me,and besides me there is no savior.
5 It was I who knew you in the wilderness,in the land of drought;
6 but when they had grazed, they became full,they were filled, and their heart was lifted up;therefore they forgot me.
7 So I am to them like a lion;like a leopard I will lurk beside the way.
8 I will fall upon them like a bear robbed of her cubs;I will tear open their breast,and there I will devour them like a lion,as a wild beast would rip them open.
9 He destroys you, O Israel,for you are against me, against your helper.
10 Where now is your king, to save you in all your cities?Where are all your rulers—those of whom you said,“Give me a king and princes”?
11 I gave you a king in my anger,and I took him away in my wrath.
12 The iniquity of Ephraim is bound up;his sin is kept in store.
13 The pangs of childbirth come for him,but he is an unwise son,for at the right time he does not present himselfat the opening of the womb.
14 I shall ransom them from the power of Sheol;I shall redeem them from Death.O Death, where are your plagues?O Sheol, where is your sting?Compassion is hidden from my eyes.
15 Though he may flourish among his brothers,the east wind, the wind of the Lord, shall come,rising from the wilderness,and his fountain shall dry up;his spring shall be parched;it shall strip his treasuryof every precious thing.
16 Samaria shall bear her guilt,because she has rebelled against her God;they shall fall by the sword;their little ones shall be dashed in pieces,and their pregnant women ripped open.
A Plea to Return to the Lord14:1 Return, O Israel, to the Lord your God,for you have stumbled because of your iniquity.
2 Take with you wordsand return to the Lord;say to him,“Take away all iniquity;accept what is good,and we will pay with bullsthe vows of our lips.
3 Assyria shall not save us;we will not ride on horses;and we will say no more, ‘Our God,’to the work of our hands.In you the orphan finds mercy.”
4 I will heal their apostasy;I will love them freely,for my anger has turned from them.
5 I will be like the dew to Israel;he shall blossom like the lily;he shall take root like the trees of Lebanon;
6 his shoots shall spread out;his beauty shall be like the olive,and his fragrance like Lebanon.
7 They shall return and dwell beneath my shadow;they shall flourish like the grain;they shall blossom like the vine;their fame shall be like the wine of Lebanon.
8 O Ephraim, what have I to do with idols?It is I who answer and look after you.I am like an evergreen cypress;from me comes your fruit.
9 Whoever is wise, let him understand these things;whoever is discerning, let him know them;for the ways of the Lord are right,and the upright walk in them,but transgressors stumble in them.
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Trust in the Lord with All Your Heart3:1 My son, do not forget my teaching,but let your heart keep my commandments,
2 for length of days and years of lifeand peace they will add to you.
3 Let not steadfast love and faithfulness forsake you;bind them around your neck;write them on the tablet of your heart.
4 So you will find favor and good successin the sight of God and man.
5 Trust in the Lord with all your heart,and do not lean on your own understanding.
6 In all your ways acknowledge him,and he will make straight your paths.
7 Be not wise in your own eyes;fear the Lord, and turn away from evil.
8 It will be healing to your fleshand refreshment to your bones.
9 Honor the Lord with your wealthand with the firstfruits of all your produce;
10 then your barns will be filled with plenty,and your vats will be bursting with wine.
11 My son, do not despise the Lord’s disciplineor be weary of his reproof,
12 for the Lord reproves him whom he loves,as a father the son in whom he delights.
Blessed Is the One Who Finds Wisdom13 Blessed is the one who finds wisdom,and the one who gets understanding,
14 for the gain from her is better than gain from silverand her profit better than gold.
15 She is more precious than jewels,and nothing you desire can compare with her.
16 Long life is in her right hand;in her left hand are riches and honor.
17 Her ways are ways of pleasantness,and all her paths are peace.
18 She is a tree of life to those who lay hold of her;those who hold her fast are called blessed.
19 The Lord by wisdom founded the earth;by understanding he established the heavens;
20 by his knowledge the deeps broke open,and the clouds drop down the dew.
21 My son, do not lose sight of these—keep sound wisdom and discretion,
22 and they will be life for your souland adornment for your neck.
23 Then you will walk on your way securely,and your foot will not stumble.
24 If you lie down, you will not be afraid;when you lie down, your sleep will be sweet.
25 Do not be afraid of sudden terroror of the ruin of the wicked, when it comes,
26 for the Lord will be your confidenceand will keep your foot from being caught.
27 Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due,when it is in your power to do it.
28 Do not say to your neighbor, “Go, and come again,tomorrow I will give it”—when you have it with you.
29 Do not plan evil against your neighbor,who dwells trustingly beside you.
30 Do not contend with a man for no reason,when he has done you no harm.
31 Do not envy a man of violenceand do not choose any of his ways,
32 for the devious person is an abomination to the Lord,but the upright are in his confidence.
33 The Lord’s curse is on the house of the wicked,but he blesses the dwelling of the righteous.
34 Toward the scorners he is scornful,but to the humble he gives favor.
35 The wise will inherit honor,but fools get disgrace.
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The Seven Seals 6:1 Now I watched when the Lamb opened one of the seven seals, and I heard one of the four living creatures say with a voice like thunder, “Come!”
2 And I looked, and behold, a white horse! And its rider had a bow, and a crown was given to him, and he came out conquering, and to conquer.
3 When he opened the second seal, I heard the second living creature say, “Come!”
4 And out came another horse, bright red. Its rider was permitted to take peace from the earth, so that people should slay one another, and he was given a great sword.
5 When he opened the third seal, I heard the third living creature say, “Come!” And I looked, and behold, a black horse! And its rider had a pair of scales in his hand.
6 And I heard what seemed to be a voice in the midst of the four living creatures, saying, “A quart of wheat for a denarius, and three quarts of barley for a denarius, and do not harm the oil and wine!”
7 When he opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth living creature say, “Come!”
8 And I looked, and behold, a pale horse! And its rider’s name was Death, and Hades followed him. And they were given authority over a fourth of the earth, to kill with sword and with famine and with pestilence and by wild beasts of the earth.
9 When he opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been slain for the word of God and for the witness they had borne.
10 They cried out with a loud voice, “O Sovereign Lord, holy and true, how long before you will judge and avenge our blood on those who dwell on the earth?”
11 Then they were each given a white robe and told to rest a little longer, until the number of their fellow servants and their brothers should be complete, who were to be killed as they themselves had been.
12 When he opened the sixth seal, I looked, and behold, there was a great earthquake, and the sun became black as sackcloth, the full moon became like blood,
13 and the stars of the sky fell to the earth as the fig tree sheds its winter fruit when shaken by a gale.
14 The sky vanished like a scroll that is being rolled up, and every mountain and island was removed from its place.
15 Then the kings of the earth and the great ones and the generals and the rich and the powerful, and everyone, slave and free, hid themselves in the caves and among the rocks of the mountains,
16 calling to the mountains and rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the face of him who is seated on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb,
17 for the great day of their wrath has come, and who can stand?”
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