Return, O Israel, to the Lord your God, for you have stumbled because of your iniquity.
Take words with you and return to the Lord; say to him, "Take away all guilt; accept that which is good, and we will offer the fruit a of our lips.
Assyria shall not save us; we will not ride upon horses; we will say no more, "Our God,' to the work of our hands. In you the orphan finds mercy."
I will heal their disloyalty; I will love them freely, for my anger has turned from them.
I will be like the dew to Israel; he shall blossom like the lily, he shall strike root like the forests of Lebanon. b6
His shoots shall spread out; his beauty shall be like the olive tree, and his fragrance like that of Lebanon.
They shall again live beneath my c shadow, they shall flourish as a garden; d they shall blossom like the vine, their fragrance shall be like the wine of Lebanon.
O Ephraim, what have I e to do with idols? It is I who answer and look after you. f I am like an evergreen cypress; your faithfulness g comes from me.
Those who are wise understand these things; those who are discerning know them. For the ways of the Lord are right, and the upright walk in them, but transgressors stumble in them.
New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. (New Revised Standard w/ Apocrypha)