The exile is foretold
1 Do not rejoice and celebrate, Israel, like other nations, for you have deserted your God. You are fond of prostitution gifts and run to every threshing floor where there is wheat. 2 This is why threshing floors and vats will not feed you; new wine will disappoint you. 3 No longer will you remain in Yahweh’s land. Ephraim will return to Egypt – in fact to Assyria, where they will eat unclean food.
4 No more will they be able to pour out the wine offering for Yahweh and no longer will they sacrifice to him. They will have only bread for mourners; all who eat it will be defiled. This food will be for themselves and it will not be taken into the house of Yahweh.
5 What shall you do on the feast? You will leave but not for the pilgrimage to Yahweh; rather you will flee because of the invaders. 6 Egypt will gather you and Memphis entomb you. Nettles will take over your treasures of silver and thorns creep over your tents.
7 The time of punishment has come, the day of retribution is here. The Israelites will know it. The proph ets will go out of their mind; the seers will become like mad men because your defeat will be as great as your sins have been.
8 Ephraim watches before my God; his proph ets try to stop the enemy on every path to protect the house of their gods. 9 Yet they are as corrupted as they were long ago in Gibeah. Yahweh will remember their wickedness and punish their sin.
10 I found Israel like wild grapes in the desert, I saw your ancestors like the first fruits on a fig tree. But no sooner had they come to Baal-peor than they gave themselves to the idol; and they became as worthless as their dirty god. 11 The glory of Ephraim will flee away like a bird; it has died stillborn, miscarried, not even conceived. 12 Had they brought out children, I would take them off before they were adults, for woe to them when I abandon them!
13 I have seen that Ephraim will make his sons like a game; he will send his sons to be slaughtered. 14 Give them, Yahweh, what you will; give them wombs that miscarry and breasts that are dry.
15 It is at Gilgal that their wickedness is seen. There I hated them. I will expel them from my House because of their evil conduct. I will love them no longer for all their leaders are rebels. 16 Ephraim is blighted; his root is withered; he will produce no fruit. Even when they are with child, the child will die in the womb. 17 My God will reject them because they did not listen; he will make them wander among the nations.