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Hosea 1 Contemporary English Version (CEV)

I am Hosea son of Beeri. When Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah were the kings of Judah, and when Jeroboam son of Jehoash[a] was king of Israel,[b] the Lord spoke this message to me.

Hosea’s Family

The Lord said, “Hosea, Israel has betrayed me like an unfaithful wife.[c] Marry such a woman and have children by her.” So I married Gomer the daughter of Diblaim, and we had a son.

Then the Lord said, “Hosea, name your son Jezreel,[d] because I will soon punish the descendants of King Jehu of Israel for the murders he committed in Jezreel Valley.[e] I will destroy his kingdom, and in Jezreel Valley I will break the power of Israel.”

Later, Gomer had a daughter, and the Lord said, “Name her Lo-Ruhamah,[f] because I will no longer have mercy and forgive Israel. But I am the Lord God of Judah, and I will have mercy and save Judah by my own power—not by wars and arrows or swords and cavalry.”

After Gomer had stopped nursing Lo-Ruhamah, she had another son. Then the Lord said, “Name him Lo-Ammi,[g] because these people are not mine, and I am not their God.”

Hope for Israel

10 Someday it will be impossible to count the people of Israel, because there will be as many of them as there are grains of sand along the seashore. They are now called “Not My People,” but in the future they will be called “Children of the Living God.” 11 Israel and Judah will unite and choose one leader. Then they will take back their land, and this will be a great day for Jezreel.[h]

Footnotes:

  1. 1.1 Jehoash: The Hebrew text has “Joash,” another spelling of the name.
  2. 1.1 kings of Judah. . . king of Israel: Uzziah (781-740 B.C.), Jotham (740-736), Ahaz (736-716), Hezekiah (716-687), and Jeroboam II (783-743).
  3. 1.2 unfaithful wife: In some Canaanite religions of Old Testament times, young women were expected to have sex with the worshipers of their god before marriage. Such women were called “temple prostitutes.” Many of the Israelite women did this same thing, and Hosea is told to marry one of them to show that the nation has turned from the Lord to worship idols.
  4. 1.4 Jezreel: In Hebrew “Jezreel” means “God scatters (seed).” Here the name is used as a threat (meaning the Lord will punish Israel by scattering its people), while in verse 11 it is used as a promise (meaning the Lord will bless Israel by giving their nation many people, just as a big harvest comes when many seeds are scattered in a field).
  5. 1.4 murders. . . Valley: Jehu murdered the wife and relatives of King Ahab (see 2 Kings 9.15—10.14).
  6. 1.6 Lo-Ruhamah: In Hebrew “Lo-Ruhamah” means “No Mercy.”
  7. 1.9 Lo-Ammi: In Hebrew “Lo-Ammi” means “Not My People.”
  8. 1.11 Jezreel: See the note at verse 4.

Hosea 1 New International Version (NIV)

The word of the Lord that came to Hosea son of Beeri during the reigns of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz and Hezekiah, kings of Judah, and during the reign of Jeroboam son of Jehoash[a] king of Israel:

Hosea’s Wife and Children

When the Lord began to speak through Hosea, the Lord said to him, “Go, marry a promiscuous woman and have children with her, for like an adulterous wife this land is guilty of unfaithfulness to the Lord.” So he married Gomer daughter of Diblaim, and she conceived and bore him a son.

Then the Lord said to Hosea, “Call him Jezreel, because I will soon punish the house of Jehu for the massacre at Jezreel, and I will put an end to the kingdom of Israel. In that day I will break Israel’s bow in the Valley of Jezreel.

Gomer conceived again and gave birth to a daughter. Then the Lord said to Hosea, “Call her Lo-Ruhamah (which means “not loved”), for I will no longer show love to Israel, that I should at all forgive them. Yet I will show love to Judah; and I will save them—not by bow, sword or battle, or by horses and horsemen, but I, the Lord their God, will save them.”

After she had weaned Lo-Ruhamah, Gomer had another son. Then the Lord said, “Call him Lo-Ammi (which means “not my people”), for you are not my people, and I am not your God.[b]

10 “Yet the Israelites will be like the sand on the seashore, which cannot be measured or counted. In the place where it was said to them, ‘You are not my people,’ they will be called ‘children of the living God.’ 11 The people of Judah and the people of Israel will come together; they will appoint one leader and will come up out of the land, for great will be the day of Jezreel.[c]

Footnotes:

  1. Hosea 1:1 Hebrew Joash, a variant of Jehoash
  2. Hosea 1:9 Or your I am
  3. Hosea 1:11 In Hebrew texts 1:10,11 is numbered 2:1,2.
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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