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FRAMEWORKS: Micah 3: Leaders and prophets rebuked


v.1 The leaders, the rulers, held to account


v.1  Then I said,

‘Listen, you leaders of Jacob,
    you rulers of Israel.

v.1b-3 They should have brought justice but instead brought pain and grief


Should you not embrace justice,
v.2  you who hate good and love evil;
who tear the skin from my people
    and the flesh from their bones;
v.3  who eat my people's flesh,
    strip off their skin
    and break their bones in pieces;
who chop them up like meat for the pan,
    like flesh for the pot.'


v.4 Although the people cry out, this is their disciplining


v.4  Then they will cry out to the Lord,
    but he will not answer them.
At that time he will hide his face from them
    because of the evil they have done.


v.5 The prophets prophesy for gain


v.5  This is what the Lord says:

‘As for the prophets
    who lead my people astray,
they proclaim “peace”
    if they have something to eat,
but prepare to wage war against anyone
    who refuses to feed them.

v.6 So spiritual blindness will fall on them


v.6  Therefore night will come over you, without visions,
    and darkness, without divination.
The sun will set for the prophets,
    and the day will go dark for them.

v.7 All who claim insight will be shamed


v.7  The seers will be ashamed
    and the diviners disgraced.
They will all cover their faces
    because there is no answer from God.'

v.8 Micah, by contrast is filled with the Spirit


v.8  But as for me, I am filled with power,
    with the Spirit of the Lord,
    and with justice and might,
to declare to Jacob his transgression,
    to Israel his sin.


v.9a He turns on the leaders again


v.9  Hear this, you leaders of Jacob,
    you rulers of Israel,

v.9b-10 Despising justice they have encouraged violence & wrongdoing


who despise justice
    and distort all that is right;
v.10  who build Zion with bloodshed,
    and Jerusalem with wickedness.

v.11 They are all out for personal gain


v.11  Her leaders judge for a bribe,
    her priests teach for a price,
    and her prophets tell fortunes for money.
Yet they look for the Lord's support and say,
    ‘Is not the Lord among us?
    No disaster will come upon us.'

v.12 So because of them the Lord will plough the city


v.12  Therefore because of you,
    Zion will be ploughed like a field,
Jerusalem will become a heap of rubble,
    the temple hill a mound overgrown with thickets.


[Note: The whole chapter is a denunciation of the leadership of Jerusalem – leaders & rulers [v.1,8,11], the prophets [v.5,7,11] and the priests [v.11]



Continue to Chapter 4