1. When Israel was a child I loved him, and I called my son out of Egypt.
2. But the more I called, the further they went away from me; they offered sacrifice to Baal and burnt incense to idols.
3. I myself taught Ephraim to walk, I myself took them by the arm, but they did not know that I was the one caring for them,
4. that I was leading them with human ties, with leading-strings of love, that, with them, I was like someone lifting an infant to his cheek, and that I bent down to feed him.
5. He will not have to go back to Egypt, Assyria will be his king instead! Since he has refused to come back to me,
6. the sword will rage through his cities, destroying the bars of his gates, devouring them because of their plots.
7. My people are bent on disregarding me; if they are summoned to come up, not one of them makes a move.
8. Ephraim, how could I part with you? Israel, how could I give you up? How could I make you like Admah or treat you like Zeboiim? My heart within me is overwhelmed, fever grips my inmost being.
9. I will not give rein to my fierce anger, I will not destroy Ephraim again, for I am God, not man, the Holy One in your midst, and I shall not come to you in anger.
10. They will follow Yahweh; he will roar like a lion, and when he roars, his children will come fluttering from the west,
11. fluttering like sparrows from Egypt, like pigeons from Assyria, and I shall settle them in their homes -declares Yahweh.