Micah was a worthy champion of the poor who had courage and power to deliver an effective message. Knowing his people so intimately Micah was able to present in vivid colors the challenge to justice. Micah had great sympathy with the oppressed people. Micah’s spirit burned with righteous indignation as he saw the random injustice practiced upon his friends. Christ is pictured as “The Bethlehemite” in Micah 5:2, and as “The Prince of Peace” in Micah 5:5.
We see they are in the last half of the eighth century, and it finds its place in the golden age of the Old Testament Prophecy – right around 745 BC – to which, Tiglath-Pileser III began his reconquest of the West. Assyria’s armies had casted shadows upon the places of Syria and Israel. The King of Syria, Rezin, and the King of Israel, Pekah, began to depend on the King of Egypt to help them – however, the small kingdoms of the west were under sway from Assyria.
Then, in 705 BC, there was a powerful, young Sennacherib who came to rule in Assyria. Moment-by-moment, Sennacherib’s armies moved into the west – and left none but Jerusalem remaining. Hezekiah and Isaiah, who depended on Yahweh, kept the people from surrender. After that, a deliverance came when 185,000 soldiers were suddenly smitten from what appeared to be Yahweh rescuing His Chosen People. Sennacherib fled back to his own land, and left Hezekiah and his people praising God, their great savior. There was much calamity in this time, and God was determined that His Purposes would work out great, so He led His followers continually.
The country preacher, Micah, had known of the tragic situation in Judah and Israel for the priests there were moral and corrupt. Prophets were hirelings, and nobles took an odd pleasure in defrauding the poor. The nation overall was ready for a collapse. The princes, priest, prophets, and the people were all responsible for the downfall. Callous greed and cruelty mark the ungodly conduct of the hour.
The people didn’t want any of the preaching, except the weak, insipid variety that would allow them to go on in their way without embarrassment. They were involved in soothsaying, witchcraft, superstition, and idolatry. Sadly, they lacked honesty, integrity, and trustworthiness. The sins involved were oppression of the poor, unscrupulous use of power, lack of integrity, reckless scorn of religion, false prophecy and false prophets, and greedy corruption in the church and state.
- Micah was a native of a small village near the Philistine border, which was called Morsheth-Gath – which was about 20 miles from Jerusalem and about 17 miles from Tekoa.
- Micah was a country man who was disgusted about the residents of the cities. However, he learned to love his capital city with a sincere devotion.
- He was naturally suspicious.
- He was keenly aware of world events and their significance, even though he was a peasant farmer.
- His contemporaries were Amos and Hosea in the north and Isaiah in the south.
- He had ethical integrity, courage, and the unflinching truthfulness in speaking the whole counsel of God unto the city folk.
- He had a personality like Amos and Elijah. He loved his land, capital city, and the poor. He had a passion for righteousness, which drove him forth with a good word for those lacking ethical standards.
- He was somewhat unsophisticated and rustic, but always a seeker of justice and mercy for his peasant friends – the ones that suffered so bitterly.
- He was a truly tender-hearted Prophet of the people, especially a champion of the poor. His name means, “Who is like Yahweh?”
The issue was Jehovah’s past and present controversy with Israel. God entered into a controversy with the whole nation. He speaks about their sin as well as impending judgment. Yahweh’s controversy with Judah, Israel, and all the nations of his chosen, was their iniquities.
His view of God:
- He is a judge, according to 1:3, 6; 3:12.
- He is a God of ethical righteousness, according to 6:8; 2:1-2; 3:2-3, 10-11; 7:2.
- He is a God who loves peace, according to 4:3; 5:5.
- He is a God of hope and promise, according to 7:7, 18-20.
- He is a God that gathers the remnant unto Himself, according to 2:12.
Oh if people of our day would view God similarly! 🙂
Micah’s prophecies of Jesus Christ
- Second Advent of Messiah (2:12-13)
- Millennial Restoration (chapter 4; Isaiah 2:1)
- First Advent of Messiah and his redemptive work necessary first as a guarantee for eternal restoration (5:1-3).
- Israel to be delivered from the antichrist by the Messiah at the Second Advent (5:4-6).
- Israel to be restored at the return of the Messiah (5:7-15)
- New Testament: Matthew 2:5-6 speaking of Micah and Christ speaks of Micah when commissioning His Twelve Disciples (compare Micah 7:6 with Matthew 10:35-36).