Micah Chapter 1
1 The LORD's word that came to Micah the Morashtite in the days of Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah, kings of Judah, which he saw concerning Samaria and Jerusalem.
2 Hear, you peoples, all of you. Listen, O earth, and all that is therein: and let the Lord GOD be witness against you, the Lord from his holy temple.
3 For, behold, the LORD comes out of his place, and will come down and tread on the high places of the earth.
4 The mountains melt under him, and the valleys split apart, like wax before the fire, like waters that are poured down a steep place.
5 "All this is for the disobedience of Jacob, and for the sins of the house of Israel. What is the disobedience of Jacob? Isn't it Samaria? And what are the high places of Judah? Aren't they Jerusalem?
6 Therefore I will make Samaria like a rubble heap of the field, like places for planting vineyards; and I will pour down its stones into the valley, and I will uncover its foundations.
7 All her idols will be beaten to pieces, and all her temple gifts will be burnt with fire, and all her images I will destroy; for of the hire of a prostitute has she gathered them, and to the hire of a prostitute shall they return."
8 For this I will lament and wail; I will go stripped and naked; I will howl like the jackals, and moan like the daughters of owls.
9 For her wounds are incurable; for it has come even to Judah. It reaches to the gate of my people, even to Jerusalem.
10 Don't tell it in Gath. Don't weep at all. At Beth Ophrah I have rolled myself in the dust.
11 Pass on, inhabitant of Shaphir, in nakedness and shame. The inhabitant of Zaanan won't come out. The wailing of Beth Ezel will take from you his protection.
12 For the inhabitant of Maroth waits anxiously for good, because evil has come down from the LORD to the gate of Jerusalem.
13 Harness the chariot to the swift steed, inhabitant of Lachish. She was the beginning of sin to the daughter of Zion; for the transgressions of Israel were found in you.
14 Therefore you will give a parting gift to Moresheth Gath. The houses of Achzib will be a deceitful thing to the kings of Israel.
15 I will yet bring to you, inhabitant of Mareshah. He who is the glory of Israel will come to Adullam.
16 Shave your heads, and cut off your hair for the children of your delight. Enlarge your baldness like the vulture; for they have gone into captivity from you!
- Verse 1 (LORD)
- When rendered in ALL CAPITAL LETTERS, "LORD" or "GOD" is the translation of God's Proper Name.
- Verse 2 (Lord)
- The word translated "Lord" is "Adonai."
- Verse 3 (Behold)
- "Behold" means look at, take notice, observe, see, or gaze at. It is often used as an interjection.
- Verse 10 (Beth Ophrah)
- Beth Ophrah means literally "House of Dust."
Version: World English Bible
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Micah Chapter 1 Guide
The first message of Micah consists of a summons, a proclamation of Jehovah, and a prophetic message based on the proclamation. This division ends with an account of the interruption of the false prophets, and finally the promise of ultimate deliverance.
In the summons the prophet had clearly in mind the attitude of Jehovah toward the whole earth. All peoples are called upon to attend. Israel was Jehovah's medium of teaching, if not in blessing, then in judgment. He witnesses among the nations by His dealings with Israel. The description of His coming forth from His place is full of poetic beauty. Under the figure of a great upheaval of nature the prophet described the advent of God.
The proclamation of Jehovah first declares the cause of judgment. It is for the transgression of Jacob ... for the sins of the house of Israel." The reason for judgment is the apostasy of the nation as evidenced in the cities. Jehovah next describes the course of judgment, commencing with the destruction of false religion. The city wherein was gathered the wealth and wherein authority was exercised was to be demolished, and the religion of apostasy swept away.
On the basis of this proclamation the prophet delivers his message. It opens with a personal lamentation expressive of his own grief concerning the incurable wounds of the people.
This is followed by a wailing description of the judgment. The passage is a strange mixture of grief and satire. At the calamity the prophet was grieved. Because of the sin he was angry. This merging of agony and anger flashes in satire. The connection of contrast is not easy to discover. A translation of the proper names appearing in this section may enable the reader to discover the remarkable play on words which runs through it.
From "An Exposition of the Whole Bible" by G. Campbell Morgan.
Micah Chapter 1 Commentary
- The wrath of God against Israel. -- (1-7)
- Also against Jerusalem and other cities, Their precautions vain. -- (8-16)
The earth is called upon, with all that are therein, to hear the prophet. God's holy temple will not protect false professors. Neither men of high degree, as the mountains, nor men of low degree, as the valleys, can secure themselves or the land from the judgments of God. If sin be found in God's people he will not spare them; and their sins are most provoking to him, for they are most reproaching. When we feel the smart of sin, it behoves us to seek what is the sin we smart for. Persons and places most exalted, are most exposed to spiritual diseases. The vices of leaders and rulers shall be surely and sorely punished. The punishment answers the sin. What they gave to idols, never shall prosper, nor do them any good. What is got by one lust, is wasted on another.
The prophet laments that Israel's case is desperate; but declare it not in Gath. Gratify not those that make merry with the sins or with the sorrows of God's Israel. Roll thyself in the dust, as mourners used to do; let every house in Jerusalem become a house of Aphrah, "a house of dust." When God makes the house dust it becomes us to humble ourselves to the dust under his mighty hand. Many places should share this mourning. The names have meanings which pointed out the miseries coming upon them; thereby to awaken the people to a holy fear of Divine wrath. All refuges but Christ, must be refuges of lies to those who trust in them; other heirs will succeed to every inheritance but that of heaven; and all glory will be turned into shame, except that honour which cometh from God only. Sinners may now disregard their neighbours' sufferings, yet their turn to be punished will some come.
From the "Concise Commentary on the Bible" by Matthew Henry.