Hosea 5:1-9 (The Message)

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1 "Listen to this, priests! Attention, people of Israel! Royal family - all ears! You're in charge of justice around here. But what have you done? Exploited people at Mizpah, ripped them off on Tabor, 2 Victimized them at Shittim. I'm going to punish the lot of you. 3 "I know you, Ephraim, inside and out. Yes, Israel, I see right through you! Ephraim, you've played your sex-and-religion games long enough. All Israel is thoroughly polluted. 4 They couldn't turn to God if they wanted to. Their evil life is a bad habit. Every breath they take is a whore's breath. They wouldn't recognize God if they saw me. 5 "Bloated by arrogance, big as a house, they're a public disgrace, The lot of them - Israel, Ephraim, Judah - lurching and weaving down their guilty streets. 6 When they decide to get their lives together and go off looking for God once again, They'll find it's too late. I, God, will be long gone. 7 They've played fast and loose with me for too long, filling the country with their bastard offspring. A plague of locusts will devastate their violated land. 8 "Blow the ram's horn shofar in Gibeah, the bugle in Ramah! Signal the invasion of Sin City! Scare the daylights out of Benjamin! 9 Ephraim will be left wasted, a lifeless moonscape. I'm telling it straight, the unvarnished truth, to the tribes of Israel.
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