1 Yahweh declares that when that time comes he will be the God of all the families of Israel, and they will be his people.
2 Thus says Yahweh: The people who survived the sword have found grace in the desert. As Israel was seeking for his rest 3 Yahweh appeared from afar saying, I have loved you with a love everlasting, so I have kept for you my mercy. 4 I will restore you again, and you shall be re built, O virgin Israel!
4 You will take up your tambourines and go out dancing joyfully. 5 You will plant vineyards again on the hills of Samaria, and the farmers who plant them will enjoy their fruit.
6 There shall be a day when watchmen will call out on the hills of Ephraim, “Come, let us go to Zion, to Yahweh our God!”
7 For Yahweh says this: Shout with joy for Jacob;
7 rejoice for the greatest of nations.
7 Proclaim your praise and say:
7 “Yahweh has saved his people,
7 the remnant of Israel!”
8 Look, I will bring them back from the land of the north, gather them from the ends of the earth, the lame and the blind, mothers and women in labor – a great throng will return.
9 They went away weeping,
9 they will return in joy.
9 I will lead them by the streams of water, on a level path so that no one will stumble,
9 for I am Israel’s father
9 and Ephraim is my firstborn.
He who scattered Israel now gathers them!
10 Hear the word of Yahweh, O nations,
10 proclaim it on distant coastlands:
10 He who scattered Israel will gather them
10 and guard them as a shepherd guard his flock.
11 For Yahweh has ransomed Jacob
11 and redeemed him from the hand of his conqueror.
12 They shall come shouting for joy, while ascending Zion;
12 they will come streaming to Yahweh’s blessings –
12 the grain, the new wine and the oil,
12 the young of the flocks and herds.
12 They will be like a well-watered garden;
12 no more will they be afflicted.
13 Maidens will make merry and dance,
13 young men and old as well.
13 I will turn their mourning into gladness,
13 I will give them comfort and joy for sorrow.
14 I will fill the priests with abundance,
14 and satisfy my people with my bounty
14 – this is Yahweh’s word.
15 Thus speaks Yahweh:
15 “In Ramah, a voice
15 of mourning and great weeping is heard,
15 Rachel wailing for her children
15 and refusing to be consoled,
15 for her children are no more.”
16 Yahweh says this to her:
16 “Weep no more and wipe the tears of your eyes;
16 your sorrow will have redress.
16 They will come back from the enemy’s land.
17 There is hope for your descendants;
17 your children will return to their own borders.
18 I heard Ephraim saying in grief:
18 ‘You disciplined me like an untamed calf,
18 and I have been disciplined.
18 Bring me back, and I will return,
18 for you are my God, my Lord.
19 Yes, I strayed, but I have repented.
19 Now I understand and I beat my breast;
19 I bear the disgrace of my youth,
19 and I blush with shame and humiliation.’
20 Is not Ephraim my favored son,
20 the child in whom I delight?
20 Often have I threatened him,
20 but I still remember him,
20 and my heart yearns for him.
20 I must show him mercy,” declares Yahweh.
21 Set up road signs,
21 put up guideposts;
21 focus your attention to the highway,
21 the road by which you went.
21 Return, O virgin Israel,
21 return to these cities of yours.
22 How long will you remain wandering,
22 O unfaithful daughter?
22 Yahweh is creating something new on earth –
22 the woman finds her husband again.”
Restoration of Judah
23 These are words of Yahweh, God of hosts and God of Israel, “When I bring back the cap tives to the land of Judah and its towns, the people will once more use the expression: ‘Yah weh bless you, O dwelling of righteousness, holy mountain!’
24 All Judah and its towns, the farmer and those who move about with their herds will live there in peace. 25 I will refresh the weary and lift up the downhearted.”
26 Then I awoke and looked around; my sleep had been peaceful.
27 “The days are coming – this is the word of Yahweh – when I shall sow the people of Israel and the people of Judah with the seed of man and of beasts. 28 It will happen that just as I watched over them to uproot and over throw, to destroy and bring disaster, so shall I likewise build and plant – word of Yahweh.
29 No longer will it be said: ‘The parents have eaten sour grapes and the children’s teeth are set on edge.’
30 Instead everyone will die because of their own sin; whoever eats sour grapes will have his teeth set on edge!
The new covenant
31 The time is coming – it is Yah weh who speaks – when I will forge a new covenant with the people of Israel and the people of Judah. 32 It will not be like the one I made with their ancestors when I took them by the hand and led them out of Egypt. For they broke my covenant al though I was their Lord.
33 This is the covenant I shall make with Israel after that time: I will put my Law within them and write it on their hearts; I will be their God and they will be my people.
34 And they will not have to teach each other, neighbor or brother, saying: ‘Know the Lord,’ because they will all know me, from the greatest to the lowliest, for I will forgive their wrongdoing and no longer remember their sin.”
35 This is the word of Yahweh,
35 he who gives the sun for light during the day and orders the moon and the stars to give light at night,
35 he who stirs the sea and makes the waves roar, and who is called Yahweh, God of hosts:
36 “Only if these laws vanish from my sight, – says Yahweh – will the descendants of Israel cease to be a nation before me.
37 Only when the skies above are measured and the foundations of the earth are found below, only then will I reject the descendants of Israel because of what they have done – word of Yahweh.
38 Behold, the days are coming when the city will be rebuilt for Yahweh from the Tower of Hananel to the Corner Gate 39 and the measuring tape will stretch from there to the hill of Gareb and then turn to Goah. 40 The whole valley where dead bodies and ashes are thrown and all the fields as far as the brook of Kidron and the corner of the Horse Gate on the east will be holy to Yahweh. Never again will the city be uprooted, never again destroyed.”