Israel's Sin and Captivity
1Israel is a luxuriant vine
that yields its fruit.
The more his fruit increased
the more altars he built;
as his country improved
he improved his pillars.
2Their heart is false;
now they must bear their guilt.
The Lorda will break down their altars,
and destroy their pillars.
3For now they will say:
"We have no king,
for we fear not the Lord,
and a king, what could he do for us?"
4They utter mere words;
with empty oaths they make covenants;
so judgment springs up like poisonous weeds
in the furrows of the field.
5The inhabitants of Samar'ia tremble
for the calfb of Beth-a'ven.
Its people shall mourn for it,
and its idolatrous priests shall wailc over it,
over its glory which has departed from it.
6Yea, the thing itself shall be carried to Assyria,
as tribute to the great king.d
E'phraim shall be put to shame,
and Israel shall be ashamed of his idol.e
7Samar'ia's king shall perish,
like a chip on the face of the waters.
8The high places of Aven, the sin of Israel,
shall be destroyed.
Thorn and thistle shall grow up
on their altars;
and they shall say to the mountains, Cover us,
and to the hills, Fall upon us.
9From the days of Gib'e-ah, you have sinned, O Israel;
there they have continued.
Shall not war overtake them in Gib'e-ah?
10I will comef against the wayward people to chastise them;
and nations shall be gathered against them
when they are chastisedg for their double iniquity.
11E'phraim was a trained heifer
that loved to thresh,
and I spared her fair neck;
but I will put E'phraim to the yoke,
Judah must plow,
Jacob must harrow for himself.
12Sow for yourselves righteousness,
reap the fruith of steadfast love;
break up your fallow ground,
for it is the time to seek the Lord,
that he may come and rain salvation upon you.
13You have plowed iniquity,
you have reaped injustice,
you have eaten the fruit of lies.
Because you have trusted in your chariotsi
and in the multitude of your warriors,
14therefore the tumult of war shall arise among your people,
and all your fortresses shall be destroyed,
as Shalman destroyed Beth-ar'bel on the day of battle;
mothers were dashed in pieces with their children.
15Thus it shall be done to you, O house of Israel,j
because of your great wickedness.
In the stormk the king of Israel
shall be utterly cut off.