Friday, May 1, 2009

Hosea 11:1-9

God's Love for Israel

1 "When Israel was a child, I loved him, and out of Egypt I called my son.
2 But the more I called Israel, the further they went from me. They sacrificed to the Baals and they burned incense to images.
3 It was I who taught Ephraim to walk, taking them by the arms; but they did not realize it was I who healed them.

4 I led them with cords of human kindness, with ties of love; I lifted the yoke from their neck and bent down to feed them.
5 "Will they not return to Egypt and will not Assyria rule over them because they refuse to repent?
6 Swords will flash in their cities, will destroy the bars of their gates and put an end to their plans.
7 My people are determined to turn from me. Even if they call to the Most High, he will by no means exalt them.
8 "How can I give you up, Ephraim? How can I hand you over, Israel? How can I treat you like Admah? How can I make you like Zeboiim? My heart is changed within me; all my compassion is aroused.
9 I will not carry out my fierce anger, nor will I turn and devastate Ephraim. For I am God, and not man—the Holy One among you. I will not come in wrath.

I love how this passage speaks of God's love and compassion for Israel (and us). I especially like v. 4 and v. 9.

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