Reading: Micah 1; 4:1-5; 5:1-6; 6:6-16; 7:18-20; 2 Kings 17
Summary: God sends one final prophet to Israel; Micah. He is a contemporary of Hosea as well as Isaiah. Though Micah does prophesy to Israel, he also addresses Judah. Like Amos and Hosea before him he announces the fall of Israel, but in addition, he tells of the future destruction of Jerusalem. Micah strongly denounces the injustices in the land and he also looks to the future Messianic kingdom.
Just as God had warned, the Assyrians arrive and overthrow Israel following a three-year siege on the capital city of Samaria. The people are taken into exile and Judah is spared during this time only because wicked king Ahaz pays exorbitant tribute to their king, Shalmanezer. At the time of Israel’s final fall, Hezekiah has succeeded his father Ahaz. The time of the divided kingdom ends and Judah remains alone.
Giving What I Want
In an episode of the old Andy Griffith Show, little Opie is trying to pick out a birthday present for Aunt Bea. He can’t decide between the baseball cap or the salt and pepper shakers.
We’ve all done it haven’t we? Given something to someone based on the fact that we like it or would want it for ourselves? In that kind of giving, emphasis is placed on the giver, not the recipient. It turns the whole “giving” concept on its ear.
We see the inappropriateness of it between ourselves, why can’t we see it with God?
Micah poses the question of what we should give to God. Should it be burnt offerings, thousands of rams and rivers of oil, even my own child as a sacrifice for my sin? (Micah 6:6-7). Some or all of these may sound like appropriate, sacrificial, or meaningful offerings to God. Maybe there are even others. But the answer is, “No.”
It doesn’t matter how “good” I think the gift is. Rather, “He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God” (Micah 6:8).
It should be obvious, but apparently, it isn’t; the question is not what do I want or what would I like to give, or what do I think God should receive from me. Instead, it is what has God says that He does want.
It’s all that matters.