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The Book of Micah
Israel’s Misery, Micah 7:1-7
Micah 7:1 Woe is me! for I am as when they have gathered the summer fruits, as the grapegleanings of the vintage: there is no cluster to eat: my soul desired the firstripe fruit. (KJV)
Micah was in great misery for the people. He said he felt like a fruit picker after the harvest who had nothing to eat. Not a cluster of grapes or a single fig can be found to satisfy his soul’s hunger. We too, like Micah and other prophets, should see the wickedness around us and feel fear for the people and are saddened by their sin. It should touch our soul. This chapter begins in gloom and darkness (Micah 7:1-6) but it ends in light and hope (Micah 7:8-20).
The word "woe" is found 107 times in the KJV of the Bible.
Micah 7:2 The good man is perished out of the earth: and there is none upright among men: they all lie in wait for blood; they hunt every man his brother with a net. (KJV)
Micah sounds like Elijah here (1 Ki.19:18). He said that the good people have all disappeared; not one fair-minded person is left on the Earth. They are all murderers, even setting traps for their own brothers (Ps.12:1; Isa.57:1). It is true of today as well. Jesus said there would be “few” who would walk the narrow road (Mat.7:13-14), and as I look around, I know this is so true.
Jesus did not lie! Only a “few” will ever make it to Heaven. False teachers today are telling people that everyone goes to Heaven. That is NOT so! Listen to Jesus, NOT those beloved false teachers who teach only what people want to hear (2 Tim.4:3-4). They will lead you directly to an eternal and agonizing Hell. Universalism is a "damnable heresy"!
Micah 7:3 That they may do evil with both hands earnestly, the prince asketh, and the judge asketh for a reward; and the great man, he uttereth his mischievous desire: so they wrap it up. (KJV)
The people went about their evil deeds with both hands. Officials and judges alike demand bribes. The people with money and influence pay them off, and together they scheme to twist justice. Micah watched as society around him decayed, corrupted by evil rulers and people. Rulers demanded gifts; judges accepted bribes; corruption was common. Sound familiar? It’s all around us! But God promised to lead those people out of their horrible sin and into His light, just as He does for us.
Micah 7:4 The best of them is as a brier: the most upright is sharper than a thorn hedge: the day of thy watchmen and thy visitation cometh; now shall be their perplexity. (KJV)
Micah said that the best of them were like briers; the straightest is more crooked than a hedge of thorns. He did NOT have ANY good to say about ANY of them! He warned them that their judgment day would come swiftly now. He said that their time of punishment was here.
Micah 7:5-6 Trust ye not in a friend, put ye not confidence in a guide: keep the doors of thy mouth from her that lieth in thy bosom.  For the son dishonoureth the father, the daughter riseth up against her mother, the daughter in law against her mother in law; a man's enemies are the men of his own house. (KJV)
Micah warned them: don’t trust anyone, not your best friend or even your wife! For the son despises his father. The daughter disobeys her mother. The daughter-in-law disobeys her mother-in-law. Your enemies will be right in your own household. Deceit and dishonesty had ruined even the family, the core of society. Because of this, the only way left to purify the people was God’s judgment. God’s judgment would draw the nation back to Him and restore them from the inside out. Luke 12:53 The father shall be divided against the son, and the son against the father; the mother against the daughter, and the daughter against the mother; the mother in law against her daughter in law, and the daughter in law against her mother in law. (KJV)
Jesus said that His Coming would result in conflict. He demands a response, so family members may be torn apart when some choose to follow Him and others refuse to do so. There is NO middle ground with Jesus. You cannot sit on the fence. Loyalties must be declared and commitments made, sometimes to the point of shattering close relationships. Are you willing to risk your family’s approval in order to gain eternal life?
Both the Passage in Micah and Luke speak of sin. Micah said that sin separated family then, and Jesus said that He would be why families would divide . . . again . . . SIN! Those who are righteous choose Jesus, those who are wicked reject Jesus, thus causing family members to be divided. I can verify this. Most of my family reject Jesus and think I’m some kind of a fanatic. These words give me comfort and peace. Matthew 5:10-12 Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 11 Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. 12 Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you. (KJV)
Micah 7:7 Therefore I will look unto the Lord; I will wait for the God of my salvation: my God will hear me. (KJV)
Micah said that as for him, he looked to the Lord for help. He patiently and confidently waited for God, and he knew that his God would certainly hear him. Micah showed great faith in God, both personally (Micah 7:7) and on Israel’s behalf.
- #1. He would wait for God, because God hears and saves when help is needed,
- #2. God would bring His people through when times were tough,
- #3. Israel must be patient in punishment because God would bring them out of the darkness, and
- #4. Their enemies would be punished.
We too can have a relationship with God that can allow us to have confidence like Micah’s. It does not take unusual talent; it simply takes faith in God and a willingness to act on that faith.
Israel SHALL Rise, Micah 7:8-13
Micah 7:8 Rejoice not against me, O mine enemy: when I fall, I shall arise; when I sit in darkness, the Lord shall be a light unto me. (KJV)
There is a great principle that runs all through God’s Word . . . that though God’s people may fall, God will raise them up again. And in times that we sit in darkness, the Lord shall always be there as a Light for us. God’s people must stay close to the Word of God in dark and difficult days which we all shall encounter at times in our lives. The closer we can get to God, the easier life will be for us. God does NOT promise to take all the “bad” things out of our lives, but He does promise to never leave us!
In verse 9, Micah makes a confession (submission) to God, on behalf of Israel. It’s a sweet submission, and in spite of the darkness, there is praise to God. What he is saying to the enemy is: “Don’t rejoice against me when I’m down. God is going to lift me up, and then I will rejoice. Though I sit in darkness, the Lord is a Light to me.” Micah was confident that God would deliver him and would deliver his people.
Micah 7:9 I will bear the indignation of the Lord, because I have sinned against him, until he plead my cause, and execute judgment for me: he will bring me forth to the light, and I shall behold his righteousness. (KJV)
Micah makes a public confession of the sin of the people. What confidence! He completely submits himself to the will of God. We all should learn something from this man! This should be the position of every child of God in our dark hours. Any time a person or a nation “sins against God” it ignites God’s wrath (ire, indignation). We know right from wrong, and we should be patient as the Lord corrects us. If we confess our sin, He will forgive us! 1 John 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. (KJV) And after that, He will punish our enemies for all the evil they have done to us. The Lord will bring us out of our darkness into the light, and we will see His righteousness.
One thing that is sure: God has permitted all things to happen, He is in complete control. So we should submit ourselves to God. We should confess our sins and keep our accounts with Him up to date. I have sinned, you have sinned; we have shut our eyes to the gross immorality all around us. It is high time that some of us confess our sin and get right with God.
Micah 7:10 Then she that is mine enemy shall see it, and shame shall cover her which said unto me, Where is the Lord thy God? mine eyes shall behold her: now shall she be trodden down as the mire of the streets. (KJV)
God will ultimately triumph, but because of the sins of the people, they must be judged. Israel’s enemy asks the question: “You boasted of the fact that you serve God, but where is He? Why doesn’t He help you? Why doesn’t He deliver you? You have said that He would.”
The enemy could not see the righteousness of God. NO enemy of God (unbelievers) can! Unbelievers cannot see that God deals with His people in a good and righteous way by judging them. After God restores His people, He will punish the nations that abused them and attempted to annihilate them, and they shall “be trodden as the mire of the streets.”
The Assyrian captivity lay ahead of Israel, and the “enemy” is interpreted as the nation of Assyria; yet the next two verses speak of a later and final enemy. Micah has predicted the destruction of Israel’s enemies and now turns to Israel’s restoration.
Micah 7:11 In the day that thy walls are to be built, in that day shall the decree be far removed. (KJV)
The nation of Israel is likened to a vineyard in several passages of Scripture. See Isaiah’s song of the vineyard (Isa. 5:1–7). The people of Israel were sent by God to Egypt to become a nation. Then God hedged them into the land of Palestine, gave them the Law, made them a peculiar people, and forbid them to intermarry with heathens. But, because of their sin, God sent them into Assyrian and Babylonian captivity. They had a ministry to the world, both at the time of the captivity and again when they were scattered throughout the world, to which they have not been loyal.
Micah 7:12 In that day also he shall come even to thee from Assyria, and from the fortified cities, and from the fortress even to the river, and from sea to sea, and from mountain to mountain. (KJV)
As we have seen in chapter 4, during the future Millennial Kingdom all nations shall come to Zion; even their former enemy, Assyria. “And many nations shall come, and say, Come, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, and to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for the law shall go forth of Zion, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem” (Mic. 4:2). But, Micah reminds them that before this time of blessing, punishment lies ahead for them.
Micah 7:13 Notwithstanding the land shall be desolate because of them that dwell therein, for the fruit of their doings. (KJV)
Israel and their land are tied together, then and now, whether people like it or not! When the blessing of God comes upon Israel, it will also come again upon their land. Count on it!
If we are truly repentant for sin, we will see a very good reason to be patient under affliction. Instead of complaining to God for the badness of the times, shouldn’t we instead complain to ourselves for the badness of our hearts. Let us depend on God to work deliverance for us in due time. Let us not only look to Him, but trust Him. Even in our worst distress, we should not despair, for our salvation is sure, IF by faith we look to the Lord as the God of our salvation.
Our enemies will triumph and insult, but one day they shall be silenced and put to shame. Even though Zion’s walls may be in ruins a long while, one day they shall be repaired. Israel shall come from all the remote parts of the Earth, and be restored. Though her enemies (and ours), may seem to win against her (and us), and rejoice over her (and us), we should not despair. Though cast down, we are not destroyed (2 Cor.4:9), we may hope in God’s mercy, and submit to His correction. NO hindrances can prevent the favors the Lord intends for His people.
Prayer and Praise, Micah 7:14-20
Micah 7:14 Feed thy people with thy rod, the flock of thine heritage, which dwell solitarily in the wood, in the midst of Carmel: let them feed in Bashan and Gilead, as in the days of old. (KJV)
In Micah 6:9 the rod was a rod of judgment; here it’s a rod of comfort. “…thy rod and thy staff they comfort me” (Ps. 23:4). I think this could refer to the staff of the shepherd which could be used in two ways: it could be used to protect and help the sheep, and it could also be used to discipline the sheep. God disciplines us, and He comforts us.
Which dwell solitarily in the wood, in the midst of Carmel: . . . these are grazing lands in the north and across the Jordan River. Micah comes to God in submission and confession of sin . . . confession of his sins and of the sins of the people. The prophets always identified themselves with the people in any confession of sin. We do it differently; we confess the sin of the other guy and leave ours out.
Micah 7:15 According to the days of thy coming out of the land of Egypt will I shew unto him marvellous things. (KJV)
God gives His answer to Micah’s prayer. God led Israel out of Egypt by miracles, but He did not bring them out of Babylon by miracles. Deliverance out of Egypt was miraculous, and God states here that when He brings them into their land again, that too shall be miraculous. Israel has been returning to her land, but this particular prophecy has yet to be fulfilled. This Passage looks to the future and to the day when the Lord Jesus will come to set up His Kingdom.
Micah 7:16 The nations shall see and be confounded at all their might: they shall lay their hand upon their mouth, their ears shall be deaf. (KJV)
When God begins to move Israel back into their land again, the world shall again stand in absolute amazement, just like the time of their exodus from Egypt.
Consider the words of the harlot, Rahab. “For we have heard how the Lord dried up the water of the Red sea for you, when ye came out of Egypt; and what ye did unto the two kings of the Amorites, that were on the other side Jordan, Sihon and Og, whom ye utterly destroyed. And as soon as we had heard these things, our hearts did melt, neither did there remain any more courage in any man, because of you: for the Lord your God, he is God in heaven above, and in earth beneath” (Josh. 2:10–11). The word had gotten around as to how God had taken care of His people back then. My friend, it shall happen again one day to Israel! God takes care of His people! Are you one of them?? If not, why not??
Micah 7:17 They shall lick the dust like a serpent, they shall move out of their holes like worms of the earth: they shall be afraid of the Lord our God, and shall fear because of thee. (KJV)
This refers to the godless nations which have attempted to destroy Israel. In that day when He comes to deliver Israel, “they shall be afraid of the Lord our God, and shall fear because of thee.” They shall lick the dust like a serpent (Ps.72:9; Isa.49:23). They shall move out of their holes like worms of the Earth (Isa.2:19; Rev.6:15-17). They shall be afraid of the Lord our God . . . people will come trembling from their hiding places, but there is NO hiding from God. He sees everything!
Micah 7:18 Who is a God like unto thee, that pardoneth iniquity, and passeth by the transgression of the remnant of his heritage? he retaineth not his anger for ever, because he delighteth in mercy. (KJV)
“Who is a God like unto thee.” In Exodus 15:11 we read, “Who is like unto thee, O Lord, among the gods? who is like thee, glorious in holiness, fearful in praises, doing wonders?”. . . “There is none like unto the God of Jeshurun, who rideth upon the heaven in thy help, and in his excellency on the sky. The eternal God is thy refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms: and he shall thrust out the enemy from before thee; and shall say, Destroy them” (Deut. 33:26–27).
The psalmist asked: “Who is like unto the Lord our God, who dwelleth on high, Who humbleth himself to behold the things that are in heaven, and in the earth!” (Ps. 113:5–6). WHAT is the answer? The answer is clearly given by Solomon. 1 Kings 8:23 And he said, LORD God of Israel, there is no God like thee, in heaven above, or on earth beneath, who keepest covenant and mercy with thy servants that walk before thee with all their heart: (KJV)
God has NEVER seen His equal, and never shall!
- #1. The God of the Bible is the Creator. He created everything seen and unseen!
- #2. The God of the Bible is holy and righteous. God is awesome, and His thoughts are not our thoughts (Isa. 55:8).
- #3. The God of the Bible pardons iniquity and delights in mercy.
He is merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abundant in goodness and truth, Keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, and that will by no means clear the guilty … (Ex. 34:5–7). God does NOT clear the guilty, He forgives us because of our faith in Jesus (Rom.5:1-10).
Micah 7:19 He will turn again, he will have compassion upon us; he will subdue our iniquities; and thou wilt cast all their sins into the depths of the sea. (KJV)
I simply love this verse! God is holy, and He says that He hates sin. Sin makes Him angry. The wrath of God must be revealed against sin. Judgment must come. There is no escape from it; there is no way out. But, when we repent and mourn for our sin, He forgives us completely! He tosses our sins into the deepest sea and does NOT go fishing for them! A godless person or nation must bear the consequences.
We must recognize that we are sinners and must come to God. We must walk humbly with God. You must come to Him confessing: “I’m a sinner, and I need Your salvation.” You must gratefully accept His salvation, knowing that you could NEVER go to Heaven in your own. (John 14:6; Acts 4:12).
Micah 7:20 Thou wilt perform the truth to Jacob, and the mercy to Abraham, which thou hast sworn unto our fathers from the days of old. (KJV)
Israel’s sin put them out of the land temporarily, but God will make good His Promises in spite of their sin. Their sin does NOT cancel God’s Promises to Israel, nor does it mean a child of God loses his salvation when he sins. Sin means going to the woodshed to correct it; but if Israel will come back to God, God will graciously pardon her (and us).
Once saved, always saved! Once God accepts a person into His family, they are saved forever! ETERNAL life means forever!
Book of Micah
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