1. I loved Israel when he was a child; out of Egypt I called my son.
2. But the more I have called, the further have they gone from me - sacrificing to the Baals, burning incense to the idols.
3. Yet it was I who taught Ephraim to walk, taking them by the arms; yet little did they realize that it was I who cared for them.
4. I led them with cords of human kindness, with leading strings of love, and I became for them as one who eases the yoke upon their neck and stoops down to feed them.
5. If they refuse to return to me, they will have to go back to Egypt and be ruled by an Assyrian king.
6. Swords will flash in their cities, slaughtering their sons, putting an end to all their plans.
7. They insist on turning away from me; they cry out because the yoke is upon them and no one lifts it.
8. How can I give you up, Ephraim? Can I abandon you like Admah or make you like Zeboiim? My heart is troubled within me and I am moved with compassion.
9. I will not give vent to my great anger; I will not return to destroy Ephraim for I am God and not human. I am the Holy One in your midst and I do not want to come to you in anger.
10. You will follow Yahweh when he roars like a lion. When he roars his sons will come trembling from the west;
11. they will come with fear like sparrows from Egypt, like doves from Assyria. For I will bring them to their homes again.