Prophecy in the Raw
Works of art by Howard Finster, Norbert Kox, and Royal Robertson
Commentaries by Norman J. Girardot
Bible passage (Revised Standard Version)
12Eʹphraim has encompassed me with lies,
and the house of Israel with deceit;
but Judah is still known by God,
and is faithful to the Holy One.
12Eʹphraim herds the wind,
and pursues the east wind all day long;
they multiply falsehood and violence;
they make a bargain with Assyria,
and oil is carried to Egypt.
2The Lord has an indictment against Judah,
and will punish Jacob according to his ways,
and requite him according to his deeds.
3In the womb he took his brother by the heel,
and in his manhood he strove with God.
4He strove with the angel and prevailed,
he wept and sought his favor.
He met God at Bethel,
and there God spoke with him—
5the Lord the God of hosts,
the Lord is his name:
6“So you, by the help of your God, return,
hold fast to love and justice,
and wait continually for your God.”
7A trader, in whose hands are false balances,
he loves to oppress.
8Eʹphraim has said, “Ah, but I am rich,
I have gained wealth for myself”;
but all his riches can never offset
the guilt he has incurred.
9I am the Lord your God
from the land of Egypt;
I will again make you dwell in tents,
as in the days of the appointed feast.
10I spoke to the prophets;
it was I who multiplied visions,
and through the prophets gave parables.
11If there is iniquity in Gilead
they shall surely come to nought;
if in Gilgal they sacrifice bulls,
their altars also shall be like stone heaps
on the furrows of the field.
12(Jacob fled to the land of Aram,
there Israel did service for a wife,
and for a wife he herded sheep.)
13By a prophet the Lord brought Israel up from Egypt,
and by a prophet he was preserved.
14Eʹphraim has given bitter provocation;
so his Lord will leave his bloodguilt upon him,
and will turn back upon him his reproaches.