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Hosea Chapter 4

1 Hear the word of the LORD, ye children of Israel! for the LORD hath a controversy with the inhabitants of the land, because there is no truth, nor mercy, nor knowledge of God in the land. 2 Swearing and lying, and killing, and stealing, and committing adultery! they break all bounds, and blood toucheth blood. 3 Therefore doth the land mourn, and every one that dwelleth therein doth languish, with the beasts of the field, and the fowls of heaven; yea, the fishes of the sea also are taken away. 4 Yet let no man strive, neither let any man reprove; for thy people are as they that strive with the priest. 5 Therefore shalt thou stumble in the day, and the prophet also shall stumble with thee in the night; and I will destroy thy mother. 6 My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge; because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to Me; seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I also will forget thy children. 7 The more they were increased, the more they sinned against Me; I will change their glory into shame. 8 They feed on the sin of My people, and set their heart on their iniquity. 9 And it is like people, like priest; and I will punish him for his ways, and will recompense him his doings. 10 And they shall eat, and not have enough, they shall commit harlotry, and shall not increase; because they have left off to take heed to the LORD. 11 Harlotry, wine, and new wine take away the heart. 12 My people ask counsel at their stock, and their staff declareth unto them; for the spirit of harlotry hath caused them to err, and they have gone astray from under their God. 13 They sacrifice upon the tops of the mountains, and offer upon the hills, under oaks and poplars and terebinths, because the shadow thereof is good; therefore your daughters commit harlotry, and your daughters-in-law commit adultery. 14 I will not punish your daughters when they commit harlotry, nor your daughters-in-law when they commit adultery; for they themselves consort with lewd women, and they sacrifice with harlots; and the people that is without understanding is distraught. 15 Though thou, Israel, play the harlot, yet let not Judah become guilty; and come not ye unto Gilgal, neither go ye up to Beth-aven, nor swear: 'As the LORD liveth.' 16 For Israel is stubborn like a stubborn heifer; now shall the LORD feed them as a lamb in a large place? 17 Ephraim is joined to idols; let him alone. 18 When their carouse is over, they take to harlotry; her rulers deeply love dishonour. 19 The wind hath bound her up in her skirts; and they shall be ashamed because of their sacrifices. {P}

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