Ask the LORD for rain in the springtime; it is the LORD who sends the thunderstorms. He gives showers of rain1 to all people, and plants of the field2 to everyone.
The idols3 speak deceitfully, diviners4 see visions that lie; they tell dreams5 that are false, they give comfort in vain.6 Therefore the people wander like sheep oppressed for lack of a shepherd.73
"My anger burns against the shepherds, and I will punish the leaders;8 for the LORD Almighty will care for his flock, the house of Judah, and make them like a proud horse in battle.94
From Judah will come the cornerstone,10 from him the tent peg,11 from him the battle bow,12 from him every ruler.
Together theya will be like mighty warriors in battle trampling their enemy into the mud of the streets.13 They will fight because the LORD is with them, and they will put the enemy horsemen to shame.146
"I will strengthen15 the house of Judah and save the house of Joseph. I will restore them because I have compassion16 on them.17 They will be as though I had not rejected them, for I am the LORD their God and I will answer18 them.
The Ephraimites will become like mighty warriors, and their hearts will be glad as with wine.19 Their children will see it and be joyful; their hearts will rejoice20 in the LORD.
I will signal21 for them and gather them in. Surely I will redeem them; they will be as numerous22 as before.
Though I scatter them among the peoples, yet in distant lands they will remember me.23 They and their children will survive, and they will return.
I will bring them back from Egypt and gather them from Assyria.24 I will bring them to Gilead25 and Lebanon, and there will not be room26 enough for them.
They will pass through the sea of trouble; the surging sea will be subdued and all the depths of the Nile will dry up.27 Assyria's pride28 will be brought down and Egypt's scepter29 will pass away.3012
I will strengthen31 them in the LORD and in his name they will live securely,32" declares the LORD.