The Lord uses prophets, visions, and similitudes to guide His people, but they become rich and will not wait on the Lord—Ephraim provokes Him most bitterly.
1 aEphraim feedeth on wind, and followeth after the east wind: he daily increaseth lies and desolation; and they do make a bcovenant with the Assyrians, and oil is carried into Egypt.
2 The Lord hath also a acontroversy with Judah, and will punish Jacob according to his ways; according to his doings will he recompense him.
3 ¶ He took his brother by the aheel in the womb, and by his strength he had power with God:
4 Yea, he had power over the aangel, and bprevailed: he wept, and made supplication unto him: he found him in cBeth-el, and there he spake with dus;
5 Even the Lord God of hosts; the Lord is his amemorial.
6 Therefore aturn thou to thy God: keep mercy and judgment, and wait on thy God continually.
7 ¶ He is a merchant, the abalances of deceit are in his hand: he loveth to oppress.
8 And Ephraim said, Yet I am become rich, I have found me out substance: in all my labours they shall find none iniquity in me that were sin.
9 And I that am the Lord thy God from the land of Egypt will yet make thee to dwell in atabernacles, as in the days of the solemn feast.
10 I have also spoken by the prophets, and I have multiplied visions, and used similitudes, by the ministry of the prophets.
11 Is there iniquity in Gilead? surely they are vanity: they sacrifice bullocks in aGilgal; yea, their altars are as heaps in the furrows of the fields.
12 And Jacob fled into the country of aSyria, and Israel served for a bwife, and for a wife he kept sheep.
13 And by a aprophet the bLord brought Israel out of Egypt, and by a prophet was he preserved.
14 Ephraim provoked him to anger most bitterly: therefore shall he leave his ablood upon him, and his reproach shall his Lord return unto him.