1Return, O Israel, to the LORD your God, for 2you have stumbled because of your iniquity.
Take with you words and return to the LORD; say to him, "Take away all iniquity; accept 3what is good, and we will pay with bulls 4the vows of our lips.
5Assyria shall not save us; 6we will not ride on horses; and 7we will say no more, 'Our God,' to the work of our hands. 8In you the orphan finds mercy."
I 9will heal their apostasy; 10I will love them freely, for my anger has turned from them.
11I will be like the dew to Israel; 12he shall blossom like the lily; he shall take root like the trees 13of Lebanon;
his shoots shall spread out; his beauty shall be 14like the olive, and his fragrance like Lebanon.
They shall return and 15dwell beneath my shadow; they shall flourish like the grain; they shall blossom like the vine; their fame shall be like the wine of Lebanon.
O 16Ephraim, what have I to do with idols? It is I who answer and look after you. I am like an evergreen cypress; 17from me comes your fruit.
18Whoever is wise, let him understand these things; whoever is discerning, let him know them; for the ways of the LORD are right, and 19the upright walk in them, 20but transgressors stumble in them.