1 Return, Israel, to the Lord your God. Your sins have been your downfall!2 Take words with you and return to the Lord. Say to him: “Forgive all our sins and receive us graciously, that we may offer the fruit of our lips.
1. Or offer our lips as sacrifices of bulls
3 Assyria cannot save us; we will not mount warhorses. We will never again say ‘Our gods’ to what our own hands have made, for in you the fatherless find compassion.”4 “I will heal their waywardness and love them freely, for my anger has turned away from them.5 I will be like the dew to Israel; he will blossom like a lily. Like a cedar of Lebanon he will send down his roots;6 his young shoots will grow. His splendor will be like an olive tree, his fragrance like a cedar of Lebanon.7 People will dwell again in his shade; they will flourish like the grain, they will blossom like the vine— Israel’s fame will be like the wine of Lebanon.8 Ephraim, what more have I
1. Or Hebrew; Septuagint What more has Ephraim
 to do with idols? I will answer him and care for him. I am like a flourishing juniper; your fruitfulness comes from me.”9 Who is wise? Let them realize these things. Who is discerning? Let them understand. The ways of the Lord are right; the righteous walk in them, but the rebellious stumble in them.