1 "At that time," declares the LORD, "I will be the God of all the families of Israel, and they shall be My people."
2 Thus says the LORD, "The people who survived the sword Found grace in the wilderness-- Israel, when it went to find its rest." 3 The LORD appeared to him from afar, saying, "I have loved you with an everlasting love; Therefore I have drawn you with lovingkindness. 4 "Again I will build you and you will be rebuilt, O virgin of Israel! Again you will take up your tambourines, And go forth to the dances of the merrymakers. 5 "Again you will plant vineyards On the hills of Samaria; The planters will plant And will enjoy them. 6 "For there will be a day when watchmen On the hills of Ephraim call out, 'Arise, and let us go up to Zion, To the LORD our God.'"
7 For thus says the LORD, "Sing aloud with gladness for Jacob, And shout among the chief of the nations; Proclaim, give praise and say, 'O LORD, save Your people, The remnant of Israel.' 8 "Behold, I am bringing them from the north country, And I will gather them from the remote parts of the earth, Among them the blind and the lame, The woman with child and she who is in labor with child, together; A great company, they will return here. 9 "With weeping they will come, And by supplication I will lead them; I will make them walk by streams of waters, On a straight path in which they will not stumble; For I am a father to Israel, And Ephraim is My firstborn."
10 Hear the word of the LORD, O nations, And declare in the coastlands afar off, And say, "He who scattered Israel will gather him And keep him as a shepherd keeps his flock." 11 For the LORD has ransomed Jacob And redeemed him from the hand of him who was stronger than he. 12 "They will come and shout for joy on the height of Zion, And they will be radiant over the bounty of the LORD-- Over the grain and the new wine and the oil, And over the young of the flock and the herd; And their life will be like a watered garden, And they will never languish again. 13 "Then the virgin will rejoice in the dance, And the young men and the old, together, For I will turn their mourning into joy And will comfort them and give them joy for their sorrow. 14 "I will fill the soul of the priests with abundance, And My people will be satisfied with My goodness," declares the LORD.
15 Thus says the LORD, "A voice is heard in Ramah, Lamentation and bitter weeping Rachel is weeping for her children; She refuses to be comforted for her children, Because they are no more."
16 Thus says the LORD, "Restrain your voice from weeping And your eyes from tears; For your work will be rewarded," declares the LORD, "And they will return from the land of the enemy. 17 "There is hope for your future," declares the LORD, "And your children will return to their own territory. 18 "I have surely heard Ephraim grieving, 'You have chastised me, and I was chastised, Like an untrained calf; Bring me back that I may be restored, For You are the LORD my God. 19 'For after I turned back, I repented; And after I was instructed, I smote on my thigh; I was ashamed and also humiliated Because I bore the reproach of my youth.' 20 "Is Ephraim My dear son? Is he a delightful child? Indeed, as often as I have spoken against him, I certainly still remember him; Therefore My heart yearns for him; I will surely have mercy on him," declares the LORD.
21 "Set up for yourself roadmarks, Place for yourself guideposts; Direct your mind to the highway, The way by which you went Return, O virgin of Israel, Return to these your cities. 22 "How long will you go here and there, O faithless daughter? For the LORD has created a new thing in the earth-- A woman will encompass a man."
23 Thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, "Once again they will speak this word in the land of Judah and in its cities when I restore their fortunes, 'The LORD bless you, O abode of righteousness, O holy hill!'
24 "Judah and all its cities will dwell together in it, the farmer and they who go about with flocks. 25 "For I satisfy the weary ones and refresh everyone who languishes."
26 At this I awoke and looked, and my sleep was pleasant to me.
27 "Behold, days are coming," declares the LORD, "when I will sow the house of Israel and the house of Judah with the seed of man and with the seed of beast. 28 "As I have watched over them to pluck up, to break down, to overthrow, to destroy and to bring disaster, so I will watch over them to build and to plant," declares the LORD.
29 "In those days they will not say again, 'The fathers have eaten sour grapes, And the children's teeth are set on edge.'
30 "But everyone will die for his own iniquity; each man who eats the sour grapes, his teeth will be set on edge.