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Israel Has Not Returned to God

4 Hear this word, you cows of Bashanr on Mount Samaria,s

you women who oppress the poort and crush the needyu

and say to your husbands,v “Bring us some drinks!w

The Sovereign Lord has sworn by his holiness:

“The timex will surely come

when you will be taken awayy with hooks,z

the last of you with fishhooks.a

You will each go straight out

through breaches in the wall,a

and you will be cast out toward Harmon,b

declares the Lord.

“Go to Bethelb and sin;

go to Gilgalc and sin yet more.

Bring your sacrifices every morning,d

your tithese every three years.c f

Burn leavened breadg as a thank offering

and brag about your freewill offeringsh

boast about them, you Israelites,

for this is what you love to do,”

declares the Sovereign Lord.

“I gave you empty stomachs in every city

and lack of bread in every town,

yet you have not returned to me,”

declares the Lord.i

“I also withheldj rain from you

when the harvest was still three months away.

I sent rain on one town,

but withheld it from another.k

One field had rain;

another had none and dried up.

People staggered from town to town for waterl

but did not get enoughm to drink,

yet you have not returnedn to me,”

declares the Lord.o

“Many times I struck your gardens and vineyards,

destroying them with blight and mildew.p

Locustsq devoured your fig and olive trees,r

yet you have not returneds to me,”

declares the Lord.

10 “I sent plaguest among you

as I did to Egypt.u

I killed your young menv with the sword,

along with your captured horses.

I filled your nostrils with the stenchw of your camps,

yet you have not returned to me,”x

declares the Lord.y

11 “I overthrew some of you

as I overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah.z

You were like a burning sticka snatched from the fire,

yet you have not returned to me,”

declares the Lord.b

12 “Therefore this is what I will do to you, Israel,

and because I will do this to you, Israel,

prepare to meet your God.”

13 He who forms the mountains,c

who creates the wind,d

and who reveals his thoughtse to mankind,

who turns dawn to darkness,

and treads on the heights of the earthf

the Lord God Almighty is his name.g


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