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Bible Commentaries
Micah 5

Smith's Bible CommentarySmith's Commentary

Verses 1-15

Chapter 5

Now in chapter 5 Micah leaves that scene of the future and he comes back to an intermediate scene.

Now gather thyself in troops, O daughter of troops: he hath laid siege against us: and they shall smite the judge of Israel with a rod upon the cheek ( Micah 5:1 ).

That, of course, is a prophecy relating to Jesus Christ and was fulfilled in Matthew ( Matthew 26:67 ). He was smitten with a rod that it might be fulfilled as the prophet declares, and this is the prophecy here in Micah. Going on to prophesy concerning the Messiah:

But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall come forth unto me he that is to be the ruler in Israel; whose going forth has been from old, from everlasting ( Micah 5:2 ).

So the prophecy that Bethlehem would be the birthplace of the Messiah.

Now, the Jews believed this for years. In fact, when the wise men came to Herod and inquired concerning the birth of the King, "Where is He to be born who is to be the King of the Jews?" Herod inquired of the scribes there in Jerusalem and they answered him, "In Bethlehem," because the prophet said, "And thou Bethlehem, I'll be little among the thousands in Judah, yet out of thee." So they believed in that day that Bethlehem would be the birthplace of the Messiah. Now, of course, since Christ was born there, it would be impossible for that prophecy to be fulfilled again, because there is no one from the house of David left in Bethlehem. Bethlehem is now an Arab city. No one from the house of David left in Bethlehem. So the rabbis today have made up some other kind of an interpretation of this prophecy in Micah. And they say, "No, it doesn't refer to the Messiah at all." But yet, in the time of Herod the scribes and all definitely believed it and were looking for Bethlehem to be the birthplace of the Messiah.

So I go along with the scribes and all at the time of Herod. They were closer to the truth, and surely Bethlehem became the birthplace of Christ. And since the dispersion after Titus in 70 A.D., Bethlehem has not been a Jewish city and is not to the present day. So it would be impossible now, because no one could really prove his genealogy to David anymore. So Bethlehem was to be the place from which the ruler of Israel would come, the King. "Whose goings forth have been from old."

Now here is the prophecy that Christ has always existed, from everlasting; that could only be said of God. The word everlasting in the Hebrew is a very interesting word. There are two words in the Hebrew that are sort of translated everlasting. The one means the vanishing point, literally. So if you let your mind go back as far as you can. They say the universe is ten billion years old. Can you let your mind go back ten billion years? Can you conceive of ten billion years? I doubt it, but at least we can accept it as a figure. But what was before the universe came into existence? How far back can your mind take you? Our minds being finite can go back, but the further we go back the narrower the lines get, until you get to a vanishing point and I just can't think beyond that. The vanishing point, that's one of the Hebrew words for everlasting. It's to the vanishing point, where you just can't conceive of anything further back. This particular Hebrew word means beyond the vanishing point. In other words, your mind goes back to the vanishing point and then beyond that. Whose goings forth has been from everlasting; from beyond the vanishing point He has existed.

We read in John 1:1 ,"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. And all things were made by Him; and without Him was not any thing made that was made" ( John 1:1-3 ). "In the beginning," when was that? I don't know-beyond the vanishing point. "In the beginning was the Word, the Word was with God, the Word was God," and then John tells us, "And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us" ( John 1:14 ). And the Word became flesh in Bethlehem that the prophecy might be fulfilled. "And thou Bethlehem, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall come He who is to be the ruler in Israel, whose going forth have been [He has always existed] from old, even from the vanishing point and beyond."

Therefore will he give them up, until the time that she which travaileth hath brought forth: then the remnant of his brethren shall return to the children of Israel ( Micah 5:3 ).

So the Messiah was cut off, therefore He will just give them up. Israel was given up in a sense by God. And now we are living in an age in which God is dealing among the Gentiles, drawing out a body of Christ. And such will be the case until Israel again begins to travail, seeking their Messiah. "Until she which travails has brought forth, then God's grace and glory will return unto the children of Israel."

And he shall stand ( Micah 5:4 )

And this is a prophecy concerning Christ and His relationship to Israel in the Kingdom Age.

And he shall stand and feed in the strength of the LORD, and in the majesty of the name of the LORD his God; and he shall abide: for now shall he be great unto the ends of the eaRuth ( Micah 5:4 ).

Remember when Gabriel was talking to Mary concerning the child that was to be born, he said, "And He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto Him the throne of His father David" ( Luke 1:32 ). So all of this word of Gabriel to Mary tied together the prophecies of the Old Testament.

And this man shall be the peace ( Micah 5:5 ),

He is the peace. In Isaiah he prophesied, "For unto to us a child is born, unto us a Son is given: and the government shall be upon His shoulders: and His name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God, the everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace" ( Isaiah 9:6 ). Now the prophet Micah says, "For He is our peace." And Paul tells us that in Ephesians. For He is our peace, who has broken down the barriers that used to exist between man, and He has made us all one together in Him. There is no real peace until the walls of separation are broken down between men. He is our peace, who has broken down these walls. So the beautiful prophecies concerning Christ.

now when the Assyrians shall come into our land ( Micah 5:5 ):

And this, of course, is a prophecy of the last day invasion by Russia.

and when they shall tread in our palaces, then shall we raise against him seven shepherds, and eight principal men ( Micah 5:5 ).

You say, "Who are they?" I don't know. We'll find out when it happens.

And they shall waste the land of Assyria with the sword, and the land of Nimrod in the entrances thereof: thus shall he deliver us from the Assyrian, when he comes into our land, and when he treads within our borders ( Micah 5:6 ).

The king of the north in those last days; not only Russia, but probably also the reference to Armageddon.

And the remnant of Jacob shall be in the midst of many people ( Micah 5:7 )

And this is probably the ministry of the 144,000 during the Great Tribulation period.

And the remnant of Jacob shall be in the midst of many people as the dew from the LORD [freshness and refreshing], as showers upon the grass, that tarry not for man, nor wait for the sons of men. And the remnant of Jacob shall be among the Gentiles in the midst of many people as a lion among the beasts of the forest, as a young lion among the flocks of sheep: who, if he go through, he both treads down, and tears in pieces, and none can deliver. For thine hand shall be lifted up upon thine adversaries, and all of thine enemies shall be cut off. And it shall come to pass in that day, saith the LORD, that I will cut off thy horses out of the midst of thee, and I will destroy thy chariots: and I will cut off the cities of the land, and throw down all thy strongholds: And I will cut off the witchcraft out of thine hand; and thou shalt have no more the soothsayers: Thy graven images also will I cut off, and thy standing images out of the midst of thee; and thou shalt no more worship the work of thine hands. And I will pluck up your groves [that is your places of worship of the false gods] out of the midst of thee: so will I destroy thy cities. And I will execute vengeance in anger and fury upon the heathen, such as they have not heard ( Micah 5:7-15 ).

This will be the Great Tribulation period that we read about in Daniel and from Jesus and from the revelation of John--the period of Great Tribulation. But I want you to notice something about this Great Tribulation. God is declaring that in the Great Tribulation I will execute vengeance in anger and fury upon who? The heathen. That should comfort you to know that God has not appointed us unto wrath. The execution of God's judgment, anger and all is coming upon the heathen, such as they have never experienced or dreamed. Daniel said, "And there shall be a time of great trouble such as never existed from the beginning." Jesus said, "And there shall be a time of trouble such as has never been before or will ever be again," as they refer to this Great Tribulation period.

Now notice that during this time the instruments that God is using are the Jews, not the church. His faithful remnant among the Jews will be God's instruments of witness upon the earth during the Great Tribulation. The church will have been translated and will be with Lord in glory enjoying the marriage supper of the Lamb. "Blessed is he who is called to the marriage supper of the Lamb." Jesus said, "Pray ye always that you will escape the things that are going to come pass upon the earth and that you will be standing before the Son of man."

And we read in Revelation, chapter 5, as there is this scroll in heaven, the title deed to the earth in the right hand of the Father as He sits upon the throne and the angel proclaims with a loud voice, "Who is worthy to take this scroll and break the seals?" And John begins to sob because no one is found worthy in heaven and earth or even under the sea to take the scrolls and loose the seals. But the elder said, "Don't weep, John. Behold the Lion of the tribe of Judah has prevailed to take the scroll and loose the seals." And John said, "I turned and I saw Him as a lamb that had been slaughtered. And He came and He took the scroll out of the right hand of Him that sits upon the throne. And when He did, the twenty-four elders came forth with little golden vials that were full of odors, which were the prayers of the saints. And they offered them up before the Lord and they sang a new song saying, 'Worthy is the Lamb to take the scroll and loose the seals, for He was slain and He has redeemed us by His blood out of all nations and tongues and tribes and people. And He hath made us unto our God kings and priests and we will reign with Him upon the earth.'"

Standing before the Son of God, that is where I want to be, not down here as God is pouring out His anger and vengeance upon the heathen, but standing with the children of God there before the throne. "

Bibliographical Information
Smith, Charles Ward. "Commentary on Micah 5". "Smith's Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/csc/micah-5.html. 2014.
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