1Come, let us return to Adonai;
for he has torn, and he will heal us;
he has struck, and he will bind our wounds.
2After two days, he will revive us;
on the third day, he will raise us up;
and we will live in his presence.
3Let us know, let us strive to know Adonai.
That he will come is as certain as morning;
he will come to us like the rain,
like the spring rains that water the earth.
4“Efrayim, what should I do to you?
Y’hudah, what should I do to you?
For your ‘faithful love’ is like a morning cloud,
like dew that disappears quickly.
5This is why I have cut them to pieces by the prophets,
slaughtered them with the words from my mouth —
the judgment on you shines out like light.
6For what I desire is mercy, not sacrifices,
knowledge of God more than burnt offerings.
7“But they, just like men, have broken the covenant,
they have been faithless in dealing with me.
8Gil‘ad is a city of criminals,
covered with bloody footprints;
9just as bands of robbers wait to ambush someone,
so does a gang of cohanim.
They commit murder on the road to Sh’khem!
Their conduct is an outrage!
10In the house of Isra’el
I have seen a horrible thing;
whoring is found there in Efrayim,
Isra’el is defiled.
11For you, too, Y’hudah,
a harvest will come!
“When I restore the fortunes of my people,