Micah 1: Warnings for Samaria & Jerusalem
chapter is ‘tough stuff' prophetic warnings to Samaria and Jerusalem
that God is coming to deal with their sins.]
The time and direction of Micah's prophecies
word of the Lord that came to Micah of Moresheth during the reigns
of Jotham, Ahaz and Hezekiah, kings of Judah –
the vision he saw concerning Samaria and Jerusalem.
Micah's home, is about 22 miles south-west of Jerusalem. Jotham
[750-732], [732-715] & Hezekiah [715-686] pinpoint the time
of Micah speaking against the capitals of a) Israel, the northern
kingdom, Samaria, and of b) Judah, the southern kingdom, Jerusalem.]
ONE: v.2-8: Primarily against Samaria
He calls the whole earth to be a witness against these two cities
you peoples, all of you,
listen, earth and all who live in it,
that the Sovereign Lord may bear witness against you,
the Lord from his holy temple.
against Samaria and Jerusalem
God is coming in all His power to bring judgment
The Lord is coming from his dwelling-place;
he comes down and treads on the heights
of the earth.
mountains melt beneath him
and the valleys split apart,
like wax before the fire,
like water rushing down a slope.
He's coming because of the sin, first of all, of Samaria
this is because of Jacob's transgression,
because of the sins of the people of Israel.
What is Jacob's transgression?
Is it not Samaria?
What is Judah's high place?
Is it not Jerusalem?
He is planning destruction of the city and its surrounding area
I will make Samaria a heap of rubble,
a place for planting vineyards.
I will pour her stones into the valley
and lay bare her foundations.
Very specifically He's coming to destroy their idolatry
her idols will be broken to pieces;
all her temple gifts will be burned with
I will destroy all her images.
Since she gathered her gifts from the wages of prostitutes,
as the wages of prostitutes they will
again be used.'
Because of this revelation, Micah is in anguish
of this I will weep and wail;
I will go about barefoot and naked.
I will howl like a jackal
and moan like an owl.
warning is that God is coming against both Samaria and Jerusalem
because of their sins and He comes to bring disciplinary destruction
that will cleanse the land of the idolatry that had been allowed
to build up.]
TWO: v.9-16: The towns of the south of Judah
This idolatrous pollution has reached from Samaria in the north
to Jerusalem in the south
Samaria's plague is incurable;
it has spread to Judah.
It has reached the very gate of my people,
even to Jerusalem itself.
‘prophet' [although not named as such] ironically, in the coming
verses, has word play for all of the towns in the far south who
are equally guilty. Bearing in mind where he comes from, these
are towns that are relatively local to him.]
All these places of the south will suffer
it not in Gath [which in Hebrew
sounds like ‘tell'- a city of the Philistines in the south]
; weep not at all.
In Beth Ophrah [which means ‘house of dust' - in the
northern part of Benjamin]
roll in the dust.
by naked and in shame,
you who live in Shaphir [meaning
‘beautiful', approx. ten miles to the south-east of Ashdod]
Those who live in Zaanan [Heb. sounds like ‘come out'
in the same area]
will not come out.
Beth Ezel [meaning ‘house of those taken away' in the
same area] is in mourning;
it no longer protects you.
who live in Maroth [a ‘bitter town'] writhe
waiting for relief,
because disaster has come from the Lord,
even to the gate of Jerusalem.
Lachish get ready to flee, for bringing idolatry from Israel
who live in Lachish, [some miles
south of Gath]
harness fast horses to the chariot.
You are where the sin of Daughter Zion began,
for the transgressions of Israel were
found in you.
So get ready to say goodbye to your neighbours
you will give parting gifts
to Moresheth Gath.
The town of Akzib will prove deceptive
to the kings of Israel.
Because the judgment I will send will make you flee the area
will bring a conqueror against you
who live in Mareshah.
The nobles of Israel
will flee to Adullam. [the
hill country further east]
Your present ease will turn to mourning
your head in mourning
for the children in whom you delight;
make yourself as bald as the vulture,
for they will go from you into exile.
warnings of the concluding verses come to the towns of the south
who might think they could escape God's eyes. They won't!]
to Chapter 2