1They say, If a man puts away his wife, and she goes from him, and becomes another man's, may he return unto her again? shall not that land be greatly polluted? but you have played the harlot with many lovers; yet return again to me,
says the LORD.
2Lift up your eyes unto the high places, and see where you have not been lain with. In the ways have you sat for them, as the Arabian in the wilderness; and you have polluted the land with your harlotries and with your wickedness.
3Therefore the showers have been withheld, and there has been no latter rain; and you had a harlot's forehead, you refused to be ashamed.
4Will you not from this time cry unto me, My father, you are the guide of my youth?
5Will he reserve his anger forever? will he keep it to the end? Behold, you have spoken and done all the evil things that you could.
6The LORD said also unto me in the days of Josiah the king,
Have you seen that which backsliding Israel has done? she has gone up upon every high mountain and under every green tree, and there has played the harlot.
7And I said after she had done all these things, Turn you unto me. But she returned not. And her treacherous sister Judah saw it.
8And I saw, when for all the causes for which backsliding Israel committed adultery I had put her away, and given her a bill of divorce; yet her treacherous sister Judah feared not, but went and played the harlot also.
9And it came to pass through the lightness of her harlotry, that she defiled the land, and committed adultery with stones and with trees.
10And yet for all this her treacherous sister Judah has not turned unto me with her whole heart, but in pretense,
says the LORD.
11And the LORD said unto me,
The backsliding Israel has justified herself more than treacherous Judah.
12Go and proclaim these words toward the north, and say, Return, you backsliding Israel, says the LORD; and I will not cause my anger to fall upon you: for I am merciful, says the LORD, and I will not keep anger forever.
13Only acknowledge your iniquity, that you have transgressed against the LORD your God, and have scattered your favors to the strangers under every green tree, and you have not obeyed my voice,
says the LORD.
14Turn, O backsliding children,
says the LORD;
for I am married unto you: and I will take you one from a city, and two from a family, and I will bring you to Zion:
15And I will give you shepherds according to my heart, which shall feed you with knowledge and understanding.
16And it shall come to pass, when you are multiplied and increased in the land, in those days,
says the LORD,
they shall say no more, The ark of the covenant of the LORD: neither shall it come to mind: neither shall they remember it; neither shall they visit it; neither shall that be done any more.
17At that time they shall call Jerusalem the throne of the LORD; and all the nations shall be gathered unto it, to the name of the LORD, to Jerusalem: neither shall they walk any more after the imagination of their evil hearts.
18In those days the house of Judah shall walk with the house of Israel, and they shall come together out of the land of the north to the land that I have given for an inheritance unto your fathers.
19But I said, How shall I put you among the children, and give you a pleasant land, a beautiful heritage of the hosts of nations? and I said, You shall call me, My father; and shall not turn away from me.
20Surely as a wife treacherously departs from her husband, so have you dealt treacherously with me, O house of Israel,
says the LORD.
21A voice was heard upon the high places, weeping and supplications of the children of Israel: for they have perverted their way, and they have forgotten the LORD their God.
22Return, you backsliding children, and I will heal your backslidings.
Behold, we come unto you; for you are the LORD our God.
23Truly in vain is salvation hoped for from the hills, and from the multitude of mountains: truly in the LORD our God is the salvation of Israel.
24For shame has devoured the labor of our fathers from our youth; their flocks and their herds, their sons and their daughters.
25We lie down in our shame, and our disgrace covers us: for we have sinned against the LORD our God, we and our fathers, from our youth even unto this day, and have not obeyed the voice of the LORD our God.