For I desire mercy, and not sacrifice, and the knowledge of God more than burnt offerings. Hosea 6:6

 

Hosea 6-9

Hosea 6

Israel and Judah are Unrepentant

1 “Come! Let us return to the Lord,
for he has torn us to pieces,
and he will heal us.
He has injured us,
and he will bind up our wounds.
2 After two days he will revive us.
On the third day he will raise us up,
and we may live in his presence.
3 Let us acknowledge the Lord.
Let us press on to know the Lord.
As surely as the sun rises,
the Lord will appear.
He will come to us like the rain,
like the spring rain that waters the earth.”

4 “Ephraim, what shall I do with you?
Judah, what shall I do with you?
For your love is like a morning cloud,
and like the dew that quickly disappears.
5 Therefore I have cut them to pieces with the prophets,
I killed them with the words of my mouth.
Your judgments are like a flash of lightning.
6 For I desire mercy and not sacrifice,
and the knowledge of God more than burnt offerings.

7 But they, like Adam, have broken the covenant.
They were unfaithful to me there.
8 Gilead is a city of evildoers,
it is stained with blood.
9 As gangs of robbers wait to ambush a man,
so the company of priests murder on the path toward Shechem,
committing shameful crimes.
10 In the house of Israel I have seen a horrible thing.
There is prostitution in Ephraim.
Israel is defiled.

11 “Also, Judah, there is a harvest appointed for you,
when I restore the fortunes of my people.

Hosea 7

Ephraim’s Iniquity

1 When I heal Israel,
then the sins of Ephraim will be exposed,
also the wickedness of Samaria,
for they practice deceit,
the thief goes inside,
and the gang of robbers ravages outside.
2 They do not realize that I remember all of their wickedness.
Now their own deeds have engulfed them.
They are in my face.

3 They delight the king with their wickedness
and the princes with their lies.
4 They are all adulterers,
like an oven heated by the baker,
the dough that fails to rise
after he has kneaded it until it is leavened.

5 On the day of our king,
the princes made themselves sick with the heat of wine.
He joined his hand with mockers.
6 For they have prepared their heart like an oven,
while they lie in wait.
Their baker sleeps all night.
In the morning it burns like a flaming fire.
7 They are all hot as an oven,
and devour their judges.
All their kings have fallen.
There is no one among them who calls to me.

8 Ephraim, he intermingles with the nations.
Ephraim is a pan cake not turned over.
9 Strangers have devoured his strength,
and he does not realize it.
Indeed, his hair is graying,
and he does not realize it.
10 The pride of Israel testifies to his face,
yet they have not returned to the Lord their God,
nor sought him, for all this.

11 “Ephraim is like an easily deceived dove, without understanding.
They call to Egypt.
They go to Assyria.
12 When they go, I will spread my net on them.
I will bring them down like the birds of the air.
I will chastise them, as their congregation has heard.

13 Woe to them!
For they have wandered from me.
Destruction to them,
for they have trespassed against me.
Though I would redeem them,
yet they have spoken lies against me.
14 They lay in their beds wailing,
yet they do not cry out to me from their hearts.
They slash themselves for grain and new wine,
but they turn away from me.

15 Though I have taught and strengthened them,
yet they plot evil against me.
16 They return, but not to the Most High.
They are like a faulty bow.
Their princes will fall by the sword because of their raging tongues.
This will be the reason they are mocked in the land of Egypt.

Hosea 8

Israel will Reap the Whirlwind

1 “Put the trumpet to your lips!
An eagle is over the house of the Lord,
because they have broken my covenant,
and rebelled against my law.
2 They cry to me, ‘My God, we–Israel–acknowledge you!’
3 But Israel has rejected that which is good,
and the enemy will pursue him.

4 They have set up kings, but not through me.
They have made princes, and I did not approve it.
From their silver and gold they have made themselves idols,
for their own destruction.
5 Let Samaria throw out his calf idol!
My anger is burning against them!
How long will it be until they are capable of purity?
6 For this is from Israel!
The workman made it, and it is no God,
indeed, the calf of Samaria shall be broken in pieces.

7 For they sow the wind,
and they will reap the whirlwind.
He has no standing grain.
The stalk will yield no head.
If it does yield, strangers will swallow it up.
8 Israel is swallowed up.
Now, among the nations, they are like a worthless thing.
9 For they have gone up to Assyria,
like a wild donkey wandering alone.
Ephraim has hired lovers.
10 But although they sold themselves among the nations,
I will now gather them,
and they begin to waste away
because of the oppression of the king of mighty ones.

11 Although Ephraim made many altars for sin offering,
they became for him altars for sinning.
12 I spelled out for him 10,000 details of my law,
but they regarded them as something strange.
13 As for the sacrifices of my offerings,
they sacrifice meat and eat it,
but the Lord does not accept them.
Now he will remember their iniquity,
and punish their sins.
They will return to Egypt.
14 For Israel has forgotten his Maker and built palaces,
and Judah has multiplied fortified cities,
but I will send a fire on his cities,
and it will devour its fortresses.”

Hosea 9

Hosea Announces Israel’s Punishment

1 Do not rejoice, Israel, joyfully like other nations,
for you were unfaithful to your God.
You love the wages of a prostitute at every grain threshing floor.
2 The threshing floor and the wine press will not feed them,
and the new wine will fail her.
3 They will not dwell in the land of the Lord,
but Ephraim will return to Egypt,
and they will eat unclean food in Assyria.

4 They will not pour out wine offerings to the Lord,
nor will they be pleasing to him.
Their sacrifices will be to them like the bread of mourners,
all who eat of it will be polluted,
for their bread will be for their appetite.
It will not come into the house of the Lord.
5 What will you do in the day of solemn assembly,
and in the day of the feast of the Lord?
6 For they have gone away from destruction.
Egypt will gather them up.
Memphis will bury them.
Nettles will possess their treasured silver.
Thorns will be in their tents.

7 The days of punishment have come.
The days of reckoning have come.
Israel will consider the prophet to be a fool,
and the man who is inspired to be insane,
because of the myriad of your sins,
and your intense hostility.
8 A prophet watches over Ephraim with my God.
A fowler’s snare is on all of his paths,
and hostility 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 punish them for their sins.

10 I found Israel like grapes in the wilderness.
I saw your fathers as the first ripe
in the fig tree at its first season,
but they came to Baal Peor,
and consecrated themselves to that shame,
and became abominable like that which they loved.

11 As for Ephraim, their glory will fly away like a bird.
There will be no birth, no one with child, and no conception.
12 Though they bring up their children,
yet I will bereave them,
so that not a man shall be left.
Indeed, woe also to them
when I depart from them!
13 I have seen Ephraim, like Tyre,
planted in a pleasant place,
but Ephraim will bring out
his children to the murderer.
14 Give them, O Lord, what will you 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 deeds
I will drive them out of my house!
I will love them no more.
All their princes are rebels.
16 Ephraim is struck.
Their root has dried up.
They will bear no fruit.
Even though they give birth,
yet I will kill the beloved ones of their womb.”

17 My God will cast them away,
because they did not listen to him,
and they will be wanderers among the nations.

3 John 1

Greeting to Gaius from the Elder

1 The elder to Gaius the beloved, whom I love in truth.

2 Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in every way and be in good health, just as your soul prospers. 3 For I rejoiced greatly when some of the brothers came and testified about your faithfulness to the truth, and how you are walking in the truth. 4 I have no greater joy than this: to hear about my children walking in truth.

Gaius’ Example of Hospitality

5 Beloved, you are doing a faithful work in whatever you do for those who are brothers, even those who are strangers. 6 They have testified about your love before the assembly. You will do well to send them forth on their journey in a way worthy of God, 7 because it was for the sake of the Name that they went out, taking nothing from the Gentiles. 8 We therefore ought to support such people, so that we may be co-workers for the truth.

Diotrephes and Demetrius

9 I wrote to the assembly, but Diotrephes, who loves to be first among them, does not receive us. 10 Therefore if I come, I will call attention to his deeds, unjustly accusing us with malicious words. And not content with that, he does not even receive the brothers, and for those who would receive them, he forbids it and throws them out of the assembly.

11 Beloved, do not imitate that which is evil, but that which is good. He who does good is of God. He who does evil has not seen God.

12 Demetrius has a good testimony from everyone, and from the truth itself. We also testify, and you know that our testimony is true.

Conclusion

13 I had many things to write to you, but I am unwilling to write to you with ink and pen, 14 but I hope to see you soon. Then we will speak face to face.

Peace be to you.

The friends greet you. Greet the friends by name.

Psalm 126

Zion’s Captives Restored

A Song of Ascents.

1 When the Lord restored the captives to Zion,
it was like we were dreaming.
2 Our mouths were filled with laughter,
and our tongues with singing.
Then they said among the nations,
“The Lord has done great things for them.”
3 The Lord has done great things for us,
and we are glad.

4 Restore our fortunes, Lord,
like the streams in the Negev.
5 Those who sow in tears will reap in joy.
6 He who goes out weeping, carrying seed for sowing,
will certainly come back with joy, carrying his sheaves.

Proverbs 29:12-14

12 If a ruler listens to lies,
all of his officials will be wicked.

13 The poor man and the oppressor have this in common:
The Lord gives sight to the eyes of both.

14 The king who judges the poor fairly,
his throne shall be established forever.

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