Samaria and its king will float away1 like a twig on the surface of the waters.
The high places2 of wickednessa3 will be destroyed-- it is the sin of Israel. Thorns4 and thistles will grow up and cover their altars.5 Then they will say to the mountains, "Cover us!"6 and to the hills, "Fall on us!"79
"Since the days of Gibeah,8 you have sinned,9 O Israel, and there you have remained.b Did not war overtake the evildoers in Gibeah?
When I please, I will punish10 them; nations will be gathered against them to put them in bonds for their double sin.
Ephraim is a trained heifer that loves to thresh; so I will put a yoke11 on her fair neck. I will drive Ephraim, Judah must plow, and Jacob must break up the ground.
Sow12 for yourselves righteousness,13 reap the fruit of unfailing love, and break up your unplowed ground;14 for it is time to seek15 the LORD, until he comes and showers righteousness16 on you.
But you have planted wickedness, you have reaped evil,17 you have eaten the fruit of deception.18 Because you have depended on your own strength and on your many warriors,1914
the roar of battle will rise against your people, so that all your fortresses will be devastated20-- as Shalman21 devastated Beth Arbel on the day of battle, when mothers were dashed to the ground with their children.2215
Thus will it happen to you, O Bethel, because your wickedness is great. When that day dawns, the king of Israel will be completely destroyed.23