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Oséias 12

1 »The people of Ephraim try to catch the wind and try to chase the east wind all day. They are very dishonest, violent and destructive. They make treaties with Assyria and take olive oil to Egypt.

2 »Jehovah brings legal charges against Judah and punishes Jacob because of the way their people act. He will pay them back for what they have done.

3 »Their ancestor Jacob held on to his brother's heel while the two of them were in their mother's womb. When Jacob became a man, he struggled with God.

4 He struggled with the angel and won. Jacob cried and pleaded with him. Jacob found him at Bethel, and he talked with him there.

5 »Jehovah is the God of Hosts. Jehovah is the name by which he is remembered.

6 »Return to your God. Constantly express loving kindness and justice. Always wait with hope in your God.

7 Jehovah says: »The merchants use dishonest scales. They love to cheat people.

8 »The people of Ephraim say: We are rich. We have made a fortune. With all this wealth, no one will find us guilty of any sin.

9 »I am Jehovah your God. I brought you out of Egypt. I will make you live in tents again as you did during your appointed festivals.

10 »I spoke to the prophets and gave them many visions. I taught lessons through the prophets.

11 »The people of Gilead are evil. They are worthless. They sacrifice bulls in Gilgal. But their altars will become like piles of rubble beside a plowed field.

12 »Jacob fled to the country of Syria. Israel worked to get a wife. He took care of sheep to pay for her.

13 »Jehovah used a prophet to bring the people of Israel out of Egypt. He used a prophet to take care of them.

14 »The people of Ephraim made Jehovah bitter. He will hold them guilty of murder. Jehovah will pay them back for their insults.«

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