The Lord Restores His People
1Ask the Lord for rain
in the season of spring rain.
The Lord makes the rain clouds,
and He will give them showers of rain
and crops in the field for everyone. # Dt 28:12; Is 30:23; Jr 51:16
2For the idols speak falsehood,
and the diviners # Jr 27:9; Mc 3:7 see illusions;
they relate empty dreams
and offer empty comfort.
Therefore the people wander like sheep;
they suffer affliction because there is no shepherd.
3My anger burns against the shepherds,
so I will punish the leaders. # Lit male goats
For the Lord of Hosts has tended His flock,
the house of Judah;
He will make them like His majestic steed in battle.
4The cornerstone # Jdg 20:2; 1Sm 14:38; Ps 118:22; Is 28:16 will come from Judah. # Lit them
The tent peg # Jdg 4:21 will come from them
and also the battle bow # 2Kg 13:15-17; Rv 6:2 and every # Lit also from them the . . . , from them every ruler.
Together 5they will be like warriors in battle
trampling down the mud of the streets.
They will fight because the Lord is with them,
and they will put horsemen to shame.
6I will strengthen the house of Judah
and deliver the house of Joseph. # = the northern kingdom
I will restore # Other Hb mss, LXX read settle them
because I have compassion on them,
and they will be
as though I had never rejected them. # Ps 103:12
For I am Yahweh their God,
and I will answer them.
7Ephraim # Is 7:8 will be like a warrior,
and their hearts will be glad as if with wine.
Their children will see it and be glad; # Ex 4:14; Ps 16:9
their hearts will rejoice in Yahweh.
8I will whistle # Is 5:26; 7:18 and gather them
because I have redeemed # Ex 13:13; 21:8; 34:20; Jb 5:20; Ps 130:8; Is 51:11; Mc 6:4 them;
they will be as numerous as they once were.
9Though I sow # Gn 26:12; Ex 23:16; Ps 126:5 them among the nations,
they will remember # Gn 40:23; Jos 1:13 Me in the distant lands;
they and their children will live and return.
10I will bring them back from the land of Egypt
and gather them from Assyria.
I will bring them to the land of Gilead # Gn 31:21; Dt 34:1; Ps 60:7
and to Lebanon,
but it will not be enough for them.
11Yahweh # Lit He will pass through the sea of distress
and strike the waves of the sea;
all the depths of the Nile will dry up. # Gn 8:7; Jos 2:10; 4:23; 1Kg 17:7; Jb 12:15; Ps 74:15; Pr 17:22
The pride of Assyria will be brought down,
and the scepter of Egypt will come to an end.
12I will strengthen # Zch 10:6 them in Yahweh,
and they will march # Jos 6:3; Ps 68:7; Jr 46:9 in His name —
this is Yahweh’s declaration.