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Tuesday, June 18th, 2024
the Week of Proper 6 / Ordinary 11
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Bible Commentaries
Micah 5

Old & New Testament Restoration CommentaryRestoration Commentary

Verses 1-6

Mic 5:1-6

(Micah 5:1) But before the remnant shall be gathered by Messiah, before those cast off can become a strong nation, the inevitable must happen. The kingdoms will gather their armies together and attempt in vain to hold off the armies of Assyria and of Babylon. But it will be to no avail. The price of their apostacy must be paid.

Zerr: Micah 5:1. This verse is a continuation of the thought started in Micah 4:13, namely, the triumph of Israel over all her misfortunes. Troops literally means soldiers and indicates military conflicts, but it is used figuratively only, for Israel did not have to fight for the release from captivity. The pronouns should be carefully distinguished in order to avoid confusion. Thyself and us means Israel, while he and they are the enemies of Gad’s people. Laid siege and smite refer to the siege and capture of the nation of Israel, which was to be reversed when the "return” was accomplished by the Lord’s decree.

FOCUS ON THE MESSIAH (Micah 5:2-6)

(Micah 5:2) In the Hebrew text this verse is the first verse in chapter five. In the Septuagint it appears, as in all subsequent texts as verse two of this chapter. Actually, Micah 5:1 belongs with the last paragraph, beginning with verse nine, of chapter four. When the bloodied-handed Herod sent to the rabbis to ask the place of Messiah’s birth, he was pointed to Bethlehem. (Matthew 2:4-6) It was on the strength of this passage (Micah 5:2 -ff) of Micah’s prophecy. No prophecy concerning His coming is more clear. No predictive Scripture is more universally agreed upon as to its meaning.

Zerr: Micah 5:2. This verse is another of the numerous instances of the passing from some favorable event for ancient Israel to one of spiritual Israel. It is understandable why the inspired prophets would do so: while the spiritual advantages pertaining to the New Testament times are for both Jews and Gentiles, yet the system was given to the world through the Jews (Romans 3:2). We know this verse is a prediction of the times of Christ, for the New Testament makes such an application of it (Matthew 2:8). Whose going forth . . . from everlasting. Jesuis was not personally connected with the affairs of the Old Testament, but He was recognized by his Father throughout all of the dealings intended for the benefit of mankind (Matthew 25:34).

Having described the nature of the Messianic age (Micah 4:1-13) and having inserted a reminder of the punishment which must come first (Micah 5:1), Micah now focuses our attention on the birth and work of the Messiah Himself.

Bethlehem! Birthplace of David. Ancient Ephratah of the Gentiles. (Genesis 35:16) The entire race of men have an acute interest in what will happen there. To the Jew first but also to the Greek, there will be born in the city of David a Saviour who is Christ the Lord. As villages go, Bethlehem is no more nor less than average. Nestling on the eastern slopes of a ridge some five miles southwest of Jerusalem, this was, among other things, the traditional home of many whose trade was carpentry. Compared to many districts in Judea, the prophet calls Bethlehem little. We might have expected the Son of God to be born in Jerusalem, or the King of Kings to be born in Rome, or some other center of power and influence. Instead, He came to a peaceful little Judean town, so insignificant in worldly eyes that Josephus doesn’t bother to mention it. Nor for that matter, is it included in the catalogue of Joshua in late Hebrew manuscripts.

Jerome suggested Bethlehem was stricken from the later Hebrew texts to obscure the evidence of Jesus’ Messiahship. In light of the fact that the Septuagint does include Bethlehem in the text of Joshua, Jerome may have been right. In any event, the selection of this humble village of shepherds and carpenters as the birthplace of God’s Messiah speaks volumes concerning the value of human status symbols and pride of ancestry. (Luke 1:52) It is also not without significance that the sheep tended on the slopes of Bethlehem’s hills were traditionally those intended for temple sacrifice. He who was born there was the lamb of God! The shadow of a cross fell across the manger bed. So firmly fixed was Bethlehem as the birthplace of the Messiah in the minds of the Jews that Hadrian would allow none of them to live in or near the town.

ONE . . . THAT IS TO BE RULER IN ISRAEL . . .

Perhaps no other single term in the Old Testament has been more grossly misunderstood or the subject of more theological controversy. To the post-exilic Jewish mind it conjured up dreams of one who would establish the Jewish nation as the final world power. Upon this dream was based most of the nationalistic pride, the religious narrowness and the racial bigotry which marked the Jewish contemporaries of Jesus.

It was this ambitious vision of world conquest and Gentile enslavement that brought about the death of Jesus (humanly speaking) for He would have no part of such an earthly kingdom. It was this same racio-nationalistic ambition that brought about the death of the first Christian martyr, and which hounded Paul across three continents.

It is this same materialistic concept of Messiah’s kingdom which today preoccupies many Christians with eschatological charts and prooftexts whose time might more profitably be spent preaching the Gospel.

On the other hand, it is the failure of many to recognize the kingly office and authority of Jesus that has brought about the spiritual uncertainty of the modern church. It was a king who, was to be born in Bethlehem, not merely a Galilean carpenter or a pale religious philosopher.

So aware was Jesus of His royal office that even He was tempted by Satan to fulfill the Jewish dream of power by setting up a worldly kingdom. This is the meaning of Jesus’ temptations at the opening of His public ministry (Luke 4:1-12), His awareness of His kingship was so intense that His preaching is termed “the gospel of the kind-dom.” (Mark 1:14-15) (cp. Luke 4:43) It requires more than a little carnal imagination to force Jesus’ Gospel of the kingdom into the rabbinical doctrine of an earthly kingdom. Regrettably, since the advent of the Plymouth Brethren (1830), the teaching of John Nelson Darby (1800-1882) and the publication of the Scofield Reference Bible, many preachers (particularly of the “faith only” persuasion) have spent a great deal of time and energy doing just that.

The real issue here is the assurance that, just as the return of the remnant will insure the fulfillment of God’s promise to Abraham to bless all the nations of the earth, so the one who shall rise out of Bethlehem shall assure the fulfillment of His promise to David. (Cf. 2 Samuel 7:16) Peter saw the fulfillment of this promise in the resurrection of Jesus. (Acts 2:30-31; Acts 2:34-36)

He was to be “ruler in Israel.” He was to rule over the house of Jacob forever. (Luke 1:1-2)

The Jews object that Jesus could not be Messiah because He was so far from being ruler in Israel that Israel ruled over Him . . . put Him to death. But He Himself answered this objection, and in doing so put the lie to all who would claim for Him a materialistic kingdom. He said, “My kingdom is not of this world.” (John 18:36)

It is a spiritual Israel He reigns over, the children of the promise . . . all the followers of believing Abraham. (Galatians 3:7)

Concerning the One to be born in Bethlehem, Micah says His “goings forth are from of old, from everlasting.” Literally the term means “from the days of ages.”

There could scarcely be a more forceful statement of the pre-existence of Christ. It denotes His existence “in the form of God.” (Cp. Philippians 2:5 -ff) It is fitting such a term should be used in connection with a prediction of His birth. We will see the same words in Habakkuk 1:12.

Jesus laid claim to the truth of this designation when He claimed to have been before Abraham (John 8:58).

THEREFORE WILL HE GIVE THEM UP UNTIL THE TIME

THAT SHE WHO TRAVAILETH HATH BROUGHT FORTH

(Micah 5:3)

God will not fully vindicate His people and exalt them until, through suffering, Israel brings forth His Son. “Then the remnant (residue) shall return unto the children of Israel.” The covenant people, within the race and nation and without . . . the genuine children of Israel in covenant with God . . . all believers shall all be incorporated into the Israel over which Messiah shall rule. And He shall not be ashamed to call them brethren. (Cp. Hebrews 2:11)

Zerr: Micah 5:3. After a brief interruption to make a prediction concerning Christ, the prophet returns to the original subject of ancient Israel, Give them up means that God would suffer the foreign nation to have possession of His people. Until . . . travaileth . . . brought forth means when the captivity and its ravages will be ended and the nation of Israel will be given a "new birth of freedom” in its own native land. Remnant shall return refers to the surviving number stated in Ezra 2:64.

AND HE SHALL STAND AND SHALL FEED (Micah 5:4)

He shall be a glorious prince, but His relationship to His people is that of shepherd. (Cp. John 10:11 -ff) It is no coincidence that the Twenty-third Psalm is the most dearly beloved Old Testament passage among Christians.

He shall do this, not as other men, but in the strength and majesty of Jehovah. It would be said concerning Him that He taught “as one having authority, and not as the scribes.” The prophets prefaced their message with “thus saith the Lord,” Messiah would say, “verily, verily I say unto you!”

“And they shall abide . . .” (Micah 5:4) The nation of Israel was perishing. Soon the northern tribes would be disbursed so completely as to make them, in subsequent history, unidentifiable. The southern kingdom would endure longer . . . even be in a measure re-established following the captivity, but any hope of national honor related to God’s covenant promise had gone up with the smoke of their sacrifices to Baal. But Messiah’s flock would abide.

Zerr: Micah 5:4. The antecedent of he is the remnant of the preceding verse, meaning the part of Israel that was to survive the captivity. One meaning of the original for feed is “to rule." which the remnant of Israel was to do after returning from the captivity. In the strength of the Lord denotes that the leaders in Israel were to rule the flock tinder and with the help of the Lord. They were to do this in the name of the Lord and because of the majesty Of the God of Israel. And they shall abide. The Jewish nation was never again to be removed bodily from its home land as it had been in the captivity.

Jesus’ own words re-affirm this, “and this is the will of Him that sent me, that of all that which He hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up at the last day.”

It is most regrettable that those who teach the Calvinistic nonsense of “eternal security” should be allowed to so pervert this doctrine of assurance as to deprive God’s people of its blessing.

“. . . He shall be great unto the ends of the earth . . .” He alone is great. (Cp. Joel 2:21 - and Luke 1:32) And His greatness shall be to the ends of the earth. Here is another of the myriad evidences in the Old Testament of God’s universal concern for all men. The Messianic intent of God has ever been that “all the nations of the earth shall be blessed.”

AND THIS MAN SHALL BE OUR PEACE (Micah 5:5-6)

In the original here there is no word for man. It is simply and emphatically this one . . . He alone . . . who is our peace. The words “our peace” are reminiscent of Ephesians 2:14, It is only the Messiah who can bring peace . . . who can bring an end to the warfare between God’s people and those who, before He came were “separate from Christ, alienated from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world.” (Cf. Ephesians 2:11-15)

Assyria, being Israel’s most powerful enemy at the time of Micah’s ministry is made here to represent all the enemies of God’s people. When Messiah appears, He will destroy them. (Cf. Ezekiel, chapter 38)

“Seven shepherds . . . eight principal men.” (Micah 5:5) A strange array, it would seem, to send against the Assyrians. Micah is obviously using well understood figures to convey the truth of Messiah’s conquest over the enemies of God’s people. “Seven” expresses perfection. We shall raise against (or depend upon) the Messiah . . . the perfect shepherd. “Eight” is seven plus one. The Messiah plus those “principal men” or “anointed men,” such as the twelve, (Cp. Isaiah 32:1) “shall lay waste the land of Assyria with the sword, and the land of Nimrod in the entrance thereof . . .” The Lord’s strength is more than enough.

Zerr: Micah 5:5, The specific exile generally meant in this book is that of the 10- tribe kingdom under the Assyrian Empire recorded in 2 Kings 17. Of course when the final "return" was accomplished (Ezra and Nehemiah). that included the 10 tribes also since the territory formerly controlled by the Assyrians was later taken over by the Babylonians. This verse is a figurative prediction that Israel would not be retained in exile by the Assyrians. Seven shepherds means that complete triumph would be enjoyed by Israel over all foes.

Lange points out that the terms “palace,” “seven,” and “eight” connect themselves with the threatening formula employed by Amos (Amos, chapters 1-2) to announce the approach of the destruction which was about to break. God’s grace will be greater than the sin; hence, instead of three and four sins which make the judgement necessary (Amos 2:4) seven and eight heroes are named who shall drive away the enemies when Messiah has come.

Just as the Roman empire, during Pax Romana, in which period Jesus was born, enforced peace with the Roman sword, so Messiah and those who stand with Him will enforce His peace by subduing His enemies with the sward of the Spirit. (Cp. Hebrews 4:12, Ephesians 6:17) Those who stand against the Gospel of Christ, and continue in league with idolatries and witchcrafts, as did Assyria and Babylon of old, shall be consumed by it. In our day, when tolerance of any and all false teaching has become a sacred cow and when unbelief is regarded as a normal reaction to God, it is difficult to think in these terms. There is, however, a “hard” side to the Gospel. The sword has a cutting edge. There is destruction for those who resist it. (Cp. 1 Peter 2:8)

Zerr: Micah 5:6. The predictions of this verse are virtually the same as those in Micah 5:5. Nimrod is mentioned in connection with Assyria because the founder of the Assyrian Empire went forth out of the land under the domain of Nimrod (Genesis 10:9-11), and the two names are frequently linked together in prophecy and history.

Questions

Future Exaltation and Messianic Hope

1. Demonstrate that Micah’s prophecy in Micah 4-5 has to do with the day of the Messiah, our own Messianic time.

2. What does John tell us about this end time? (1 John 2:18 -f)

3. What is the meaning of “the mountain of Jehovah’s house”?

4. Comment on “all peoples walk everyone in the name of his god, but we will walk in the name of Jehovah our God for ever and ever.” (Micah 4:5)

5. Discuss “many nations.” (Micah 4:2)

6. Discuss “. . . out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of Jehovah from Jerusalem.” (Micah 4:2 cp. Luke 24:44 -f)

7. Men are at war with men because ________________________.

8. God must become ruler of our ____________ as well as our church doctrine. (Micah 4:4)

9. In that day” (Micah 4:6-7) refers us back to ___________________.

10. “That which is lame” is the image of ____________.

11. Discuss “her that halted is become a remnant.” (Micah 4:7)

12. Distinguish between “that which was lame” and “that which was driven away.”

13. Discuss “I will make . . . that which was cast far off a strong nation” in Micah 4:7 in light of Romans 11:1.

14. What is meant by “tower of the flock”? (Micah 4:8)

15. Discuss Micah 4:11 in connection with Micah 3:12.

16. In Micah’s own time the nation of ____________ dominated the international scene.

17. ____________ would wipe out the northern kingdom.

18. ____________ would enslave the southern kingdom.

19. ____________ would conquer the Medo-Persian empire.

20. The Maccabean revolt was against the rule of ____________.

21. All these powers, and others since have used the land of ____________ as a political pawn and a ____________ state.

22. Discuss Romans 11, Micah 4:11-13 in light of current events in the Middle East.

23. The Jews are precious to Jehovah because ____________.

24. This does not imply ____________.

25. What New Testament reference is made to Micah 5:2 -ff?

26. What is the meaning of Ephratah? (Micah 5:2)

27. Bethlehem nestles on the ____________ slopes of a ridge some ____________ miles ____________ of Jerusalem.

28. Discuss, the conditions of Jesus birth in contrast to what might have been expected for the birth of a king.

29. The sheep tended on the slopes of Bethlehem were traditionally intended for _________.

30. Why did the Roman emperor Harian forbid Jews to live in or near Bethlehem?

31. Perhaps no other term in the Old Testament has been more grossly misunderstood than _____________.

32. Humanly speaking, it was the Jews’ ambitious vision of ____________ that was responsible for the death of Jesus.

33. It is the failure of many to recognize the kingly office and authority of Jesus that has brought about the ____________ in the modern church.

34. Discuss the temptation of Jesus (Luke 4:1-12) in relation to the Jewish dream of world power in the Messianic age.

35. The real issue in Micah 2:6 is the assurance that ____________.

36. Why do the Jews object that Jesus cannot be the Messiah?

37. Discuss the pre-existence of Christ in light of Micah 5:2.

38. God would not, Micah promised, fully vindicate His people and exalt them until ____________,

39. The Messiah is to be a glorious prince, but His relationship to His people is that of a ____________.

40. What is the significance of “His greatness shall be to the ends of the earth”?

41. Discuss “and this man shall be our peace . . .”

42. Discuss “seven shepherds . . . eight principal men.” (Micah 5:5-6)

43. What is meant by “the remnant shall be as dew in a summer morning”?

44. Messiah’s people are to be as bold as _____________.

45. Micah 5:15 must be almost unbelievable to ____________.

46. The prophet sees in the age of ____________ God executing “vengeance in anger and wrath upon the nations which hearken not”

Verses 1-9

Mic 5:1-9

The ruler of eternal peace comes from Bethlehem

and will produce a strong Kingdom (Micah 5:1-9)

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

Though chapter four ends this verse no doubt belongs to its context. Assyria would certainly siege Israel and smite the king and they shall be led away as captives. While defeat seems permanent God’s true remnant will be eternally victorious because God has all this in His providential plan. God’s sovereignty is to be seen in Assyria’s rise to power, Israel’s fall, Babylon’s rise to power, and Judah’s fall. Yet let us all note that the people of God were never intended to forever fall to their enemies. God has an eternal kingdom that shall be greater than any nation that the earth has ever known in power and longevity.

But thou, Bethlehem Ephrathah, which art little to be among the thousands of Judah, out of thee shall one come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth are from old, from everlasting” (Micah 5:2).

Though the coming days of judgment and punishment seem dark and drear God is planning on bringing a ruler in Israel forth from Bethlehem Ephrathah. This ruler shall be he whose goings forth are from old, from everlasting.” This ruler would be an eternal being as deity. People, during Jesus’ day, considered this prophecy to be fulfilled by the Messiah (cf. Matthew 2:5-6). This would be the King of God’s spiritual kingdom (cf. Matthew 2:1-2). Jesus’ birth and Matthew’s record at chapter 1:5-6 prove his identity. Not only so but we note that Jesus’ goings forth are from old, from everlasting (cf. John 1:1-2; John 1:14).

Therefore will he give them up, until the time that she who traveleth hath brought forth: then the residue of his brethren shall return unto the children of Israel” (Micah 5:3).

God gives up His people to captivity, pain and anguish for the sins they have committed against him. This shall last until His people have produced the ruler that is to be born in Bethlehem.

At that time will the residue of his brethren return to God through the ruler from Bethlehem.

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

Jesus would go on to say, I am the good shepherd; and I know mine own, and mine own know me... and other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice: and they shall become one flock, one shepherd (John 10:14-16). As shepherd of the flock of sheep the Lord cares, tends, feeds, and supplies all the necessities of life for those under his care.

And this man shall be our peace. When the Assyrian shall come into our land, and when he shall tread in our palaces, then shall we raise against him seven shepherds, and eight principal men. And they shall waste the land of Assyria with the sword, and the land of Nimrod in the entrances thereof: and he shall deliver us from the Assyrian, when he comes into our land, and when he treads within our border” (Micah 5:5-6).

This man is the Christ, ruler, and one who shall feed his flock.” Peace between God and man through the forgiveness of sins will be possible through this man.” The Assyrian under consideration must be a figurative use of the nation to indicate all the enemies of God. There was no Assyrian threat during the days of the Christ and so this must be viewed as figurative. The sword used by the people of God in His kingdom will the word of God rather than carnal weapons against those we disagree with (cf. Ephesians 6:17).

And the remnant of Jacob shall be in the midst of many peoples as dew from Jehovah, as showers upon the grass, that tarry not for man, nor wait for the sons of men” (Micah 5:7).

Those who comprise Zion (i.e., the kingdom of God / church) are now depicted as the remnant of Jacob.” God’s people are compared to dew and showers upon the grass.” The grass is sustained and grows by the water and even so the nations shall be spiritually sustained and grow by the waters of life that the disciple of Christ shall distribute through teaching.

And the remnant of Jacob shall be among the nations, in the midst of many peoples, as a lion among the beasts of the forest, as a young lion among the flocks of sheep; who, if he go through, treads down and tears in pieces, and there is none to deliver. Let thy hand be lifted up above thine adversaries, and let all thine enemies be cut off” (Micah 5:8-9).

Through the ruler of this new spiritual kingdom God’s people will have peace. They shall not be fearful of threats from enemies such as the Assyrians. The people of God shall be as growth and strength producing rain upon the nations they contact. Those; however, who reject the ruler and his kingdom shall be no threat against the spiritual kingdom. The enemies of God shall have no strength or power to overcome the kingdom of God.

Verses 7-15

Mic 5:7-15

THE GLORIOUS FUTURE OF THE REMNANT (Micah 5:7-15)

Micah writes glorious things in this passage concerning the remnant. Israel according to the flesh dwelt alone until her destruction. The nearer destruction finally came, the more she dwelt alone, turned in upon herself the less certain it was God’s Messiah would save her and make the Gentiles her slaves, Not so the remnant, the true Israel; she will be in the midst of many people . . . as the salt of the earth, or as seed sown upon the ground. (Cp. Hosea 2:23) The remnant shall be as dew from the lord, covering all as dew in a summer morning. (Cp. Psalms 110:3) They shall be pure and clear as dew drops, as the water of life. Dependent upon the Spirit, they shall “tarry not for man, nor wait upon the sons of man.” They shall be a great blessing to those people among whom they live, just as the refreshing dew from heaven is a blessing to thirsty earth.

Zerr: Micah 5:7. Small things are sometimes very effective in their influence. The dew is light and small compared with the vegetable kingdom, yet it can enliven an entire field of dry and parched grass. Likewise, the influence of the remnant of Israel was to be great when it was settled down upon the (politically) dry land of Palestine.

But the remnant shall not be tread upon as is the dew. They shall be “as a lion among the flocks of sheep”. . . as a lion “treadeth down and teareth in pieces and there is none to deliver.”

Zerr: Micah 5:8. This verse continues the thought of the preceding one but with a different figure. Now the remnant is likened to a Hon among other beasts, with the added specific thought that Israel was to be like a lion in a flock of sheep. Not that the people of Israel were actually to exercise any violence against, the surroundings, but the illustration is to show the power of God’s nation.

Messiah’s people shall be silent and gentle and bringers of blessings, as the dew, but they shall be as bold as lions. The forces which today threaten to destroy Christian civilization cannot stand against the power of the Gospel in the lives of committed people any more than a hyena can stand against a lion. The strength of God’s covenant people is that which derives from the Lion of the Tribe of Judah. Israel of old had been instructed to not go to Egypt for horses (Deuteronomy 17:16) lest they depend upon chariots and cavalry rather than upon God. (Psalms 20:7) From Solomon on they would disregard this command (1 Kings 10:26-28). The new Israel has no such arms. She stands or falls upon her trust in Christ. So long as she is faithful nothing can stand against her. (Cp. Romans 8:31 -ff)

Zerr: Micah 5:9. The greatest enemies the people of Israel ever had were those who led them into idolatry. All of that, was to be reversed by the revolutionary effects of the captivity. This is the sense in which the enemies were to be cut off.

Note those things against which His people are to prevail. Micah 5:10 . . . horses and chariots are cut off and destroyed. Micah 5:11 . . . Cities and strongholds will be thrown down. The temptation to trust worldly power are so to be eliminated. The church has been slow to relinquish these things, but the circumstances of our day now leave us no choice. Only the Gospel can stand against the armed atheism which threatens our existence.

Zerr: Micah 5:10. The general subject of the verses from 8 to the close of the chapter is the return from captivity, in-cluding the things that were to be accomplished by that sad experience. Chief among these was the cure of Idolatry and the worldly Interests the people of Israel had manifested. This verse cites one of those as being the horse and chariot. Such things should not have led them into wrong-doing, but it seems they did. The Lord knew the tendencies of them and had forbidden their use as early as in Deuteronomy 17:16 which Solomon disobeyed after he became king (1 Kings 10:28). Micah 5:11. The mere tact of being a city was not objectionable to God, but some of them had been devoted to the service of idolatry and He proposed to deprive the land of such.

Witchcrafts and soothsayers (Micah 5:12) are also to be cut off. There is a revival of such evil in our day, but not in the hands of the church.

Zerr: Micah 5:12. The belief in witchcraft and soothsaying was based largely on that of the supposed power of the in-visible false gods of the heathen. As an item in removing the indications of such false service, the presence and use of such evil characters as witches and soothsayers had to be removed.

Graven images and pillars and the graven images which are the works of our hand (Micah 5:13) are to be eliminated. Even the Roman church has recently “decommissioned” two hundred saints before whose idols thousands have prayed! In the New Testament church such things were an abomination.

Zerr: Micah 5:13. Idolaters were not content to offer service to the invisible gods, but made images of them out of metal and other materials. All of this was to be discontinued as a result of the captivity, and the reader should keep hiis memory informed about this important subject. See the historical note that records the fulfillment of the prediction at Isaiah 1:25 of this Commentary. A very foolish fact, in connection with the worship of graven images is that they were the work of their hands. The idea of serving a thing as a god that was the work of that same servant is the height of fotly and inconsistency. Micah 5:14. Not all groves were objectionable to God. for be is the creator of all vegetable life. But the heathen nations turned many groves into places of idolatrous worship, and in some cases they even Bingled out in-dividual trees and consecrated them to the worship of false gods. It was these abominable groves that were meant by the prediction of this verse and others on the same line of denunciation. The very presence of all such growing objects might remind the people of Israel of their former practices and rekindle in them a desire to return to the abomination. As a precautionary movement the lord decreed that such groves should be destroyed. The cities that had been used for the same, purpose were to share in the same fate as these, groves.

Micah 5:15 must be almost unbelievable to the one today who thinks the God of the Old Testament was only a primitive fore-shadowing of the God of Love revealed in the new. Nevertheless, the prophet sees, IN THE AGE OF THE MESSIAH, God executing “vengeance in anger and wrath upon the nations which hearken not.” The concept of a God Who does not bring vengeance against anyone is of very recent origin and completely foreign to the Christian God of the New Testament as well as the Old.

Zerr: Micah 5:15. The people of God learned of the practice of idolatry through the heathen nations, hence He was incensed against them and determined to take vengeance on them. This included even the destruction of their cities.

JEHOVAH’S CONTROVERSY WITH HIS PEOPLE

Chapters six and seven are composed of a series of lamentations, threatenings and denunciations. These are directed against all classes of people in Israel and Judah, whereas those which introduce each of the three earlier cycles (chapters 1-3) are directed against the upper classes only. The themes struck there are extended here.

We are pressed to conclude that, just as the sins of society’s leaders filter down through all classes so the judgements of God upon those sins are also applied to all classes of people. This is a lesson which is much needed today among revolutionaries who are critical of those in authority. Too many times protests against “the system” are merely “the pot calling the kettle black.”

Questions

Jehovah’s Controversy With His People

1. Micah chapters six and seven are composed of a series of __________.

2. Just as the sins of society’s leaders filter down through all classes so __________ are applied to all people.

3. Jehovah’s first controversy with His people is occasioned by their having forgotten __________.

4. God’s controversy with His people is before all creation because __________.

5. How does Micah connect the final section of his book to the first section?

6. In Micah 6:3-5 the __________ is made. In Micah 6:9 to Micah 7:6, the case will be __________.

7. The cry of Micah 6:3-5 is the plea of a __________.

8. Explain Micah’s reference to Balaam. (Micah 6:5)

9. Why “remember from Shittim to Gilgal”? (Micah 6:5(b))

10. Show how Micah 6:1-5 is timely in our day.

11. What is alluded to by “shall I give my first-born for my transgression”? (Micah 6:7 (b))

12. Discuss Micah 6:8 in connection with Matthew 26:16 and Hebrews 2:1-4,

13. God’s insistence upon faithfulness is not unreasonable when we remember __________ His __________ and __________.

14. How does Micah answer the question, “what doth Jehovah require of thee?” (Micah 6:8)

15. The __________ is the Bible quoted by Jesus and the apostles.

16. Micah 6:8 does not claim that __________ an attribute of God’s character is required of God’s people.

17. Rather than compassion, Micah insists that we are required to __________.

18. Discuss Micah 6:8 in connection with Matthew 23:23.

19. Why must the outward forms of obedience always be expressive of inner reality?

20. Compare Micah 6:9 and Proverbs 9:10.

21. What is the significance of “shall I be pure?” Micah 6:10-12

22. The persistent fact of __________ is a prime factor in Micah’s message.

23. Compare Micah 6:14 and Job 20:15.

24. What is meant by Micah 6:15?

25. What are “the statutes of Omri”? Micah 6:15(a)

26. Compare Micah 6:16(b) and Micah 3:12.

27. Discuss the historic phenomena known as “anti-semitism” in light of Micah 6:16.

28. Compare Micah 7:1-2(a) and Psalms 14:1-2.

29. Discuss Micah 7:1-2 in light of Romans 3:9-18.

30. Micah 7:2(b) – Micah 7:4(a) refers to __________.

31. Compare Micah 7:2(b) – Micah 7:4(a) with 2 Samuel 23:6-7, Isaiah 55:13, and Ezekiel 2:6.

32. Who are listed as those whom honest men cannot trust? (Micah 7:5-6)

33. Discuss Micah 7:5-6 in connection with Matthew 10:35-36 and Luke 12:53.

34. Discuss Micah 7:7 in connection with Joshua 24:14-15.

35. Despite the wickedness of his time, Micah is unshaken in the conviction that __________.

36. Discuss Micah 7:8-10 in light of Romans 8:31-39.

37. Compare Micah 7:9 to Psalms 22:1-24 and Romans 7:24 to Romans 8:1.

38. What is meant by “a day for rebuilding thy walls”? (Micah 7:11-13)

39. If one requires proof of Micah’s highest motives in writing his prophecies, his prayer for __________ provides it amply.

40. The nations shall see what and be ashamed?

Verses 10-15

Mic 5:10-15

Vengeance against the Wicked (Micah 5:10-15)

And it shall come to pass in that day, saith Jehovah, that I will cut off thy horses out of the midst of thee, and will destroy thy chariots: and I will cut off the cities of thy land, and will throw down all thy strongholds” (Micah 5:10-11).

All things such as horses, chariots, cities, and strongholds that the people put their trust into would be cut off. That day is a time of a spiritual kingdom under the ruler from Bethlehem. The weapons of the people from the spiritual kingdom shall be spiritual rather than carnal (2 Corinthians 10:4).

And I will cut off witchcrafts out of thy hand; and thou shalt have no more soothsayers: and I will cut off thy graven images and thy pillars out of the midst of thee; and thou shalt no more worship the work of thy hands; and I will pluck up thine Asherim out of the midst of thee; and I will destroy thy cities. And I will execute vengeance in anger and wrath upon the nations which hearkened not (Micah 5:12-15).

These verses indicate how deep Israel and Judah’s rebellion to Jehovah God had gone. The land was occupied by those who practiced witchcraft and soothsaying (i.e., false prophets who claimed to be able to tell what was to happen in the future). The land had graven images and pillars (i.e., obelisks) erected within. The Asherim (i.e., an Assyrian goddess who was supposedly wife to the war god Asir, the national god of Assyria) was also found in the land. The people who claimed to belong to God even worshipped these images which were the work of their own hands.” When the kingdom of God is established and the ruler from Bethlehem reigns supreme God will cut off all these wicked works of man’s hands through vengeance, anger, and wrath. All such things affront the name of Jehovah God and thereby are only representatives of people who will not hear and obey His ways.

One may read such verses and conclude that God desires his eternal kingdom to crush all who stand in its way. The crusaders took on the same mentality as the Muslims in this respect. But again, we must remember that the text clearly points to a spiritual kingdom. Micah’s ruler born in Bethlehem that would be king over God’s Zion kingdom is the Christ of Matthew 2:5-6. Jesus said that his kingdom was not of this world (John 18:36). The great battle under consideration is a spiritual battle. Man has the power, through Jesus Christ, to destroy the strongholds of sin within the mind and rid them forever through the blood of Jesus Christ (Ephesians 1:7).

Bibliographical Information
"Commentary on Micah 5". "Old & New Testament Restoration Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/onr/micah-5.html.
 
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