3For now they will say:
"We have no king,
for we fear not Yahweh,
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 Samaria tremble
for the calf of Beth-aven.
Its people shall mourn for it,
and its idolatrous priests shall wail 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.
Ephraim shall be put to shame,
and Israel shall be ashamed of his idol.
7Samaria'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 Gibeah, you have sinned, O Israel;
there they have continued.
Shall not war overtake them in Gibeah?
10I will come against the wayward people to chastise them;
and nations shall be gathered against them
when they are chastised for their double iniquity.
11Ephraim was a trained heifer
that loved to thresh,
and I spared her fair neck;
but I will put Ephraim to the yoke,
Judah must plow,
Jacob must harrow for himself.
12Sow for yourselves righteousness,
reap the fruit of steadfast love;
break up your fallow ground,
for it is the time to seek Yahweh,
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 chariots
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-arbel on the day of battle;
mothers were dashed in pieces with their children.
15Thus it shall be done to you, O house of Israel,
because of your great wickedness.
In the storm the king of Israel
shall be utterly cut off.
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