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Micah 1

Mic 1

Micah 1

1 The word of the LORD that came to Micah the Morasthite in the days of Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah, kings of Judah, which he saw concerning Samaria and Jerusalem.

2 Hear, all ye people; hearken, O earth, and all that therein is: and let the Lord GOD be witness against you, the LORD from his holy temple.

3 For, behold, the LORD cometh forth out of his place, and will come down, and tread upon the high places of the earth.

4 And the mountains shall be molten under him, and the valleys shall be cleft, as wax before the fire, and as the waters that are poured down a steep place.

5 For the transgression of Jacob is all this, and for the sins of the house of Israel. What is the transgression of Jacob? is it not Samaria? and what are the high places of Judah? are they not Jerusalem?

6 Therefore I will make Samaria as an heap of the field, and as plantings of a vineyard: and I will pour down the stones thereof into the valley, and I will discover the foundations thereof.

7 And all the graven images thereof shall be beaten to pieces, and all the hires thereof shall be burned with the fire, and all the idols thereof will I lay desolate: for she gathered it of the hire of an harlot, and they shall return to the hire of an harlot.

8 Therefore I will wail and howl, I will go stripped and naked: I will make a wailing like the dragons, and mourning as the owls.

9 For her wound is incurable; for it is come unto Judah; he is come unto the gate of my people, even to Jerusalem.

10 Declare ye it not at Gath, weep ye not at all: in the house of Aphrah roll thyself in the dust.

11 Pass ye away, thou inhabitant of Saphir, having thy shame naked: the inhabitant of Zaanan came not forth in the mourning of Bethezel; he shall receive of you his standing.

12 For the inhabitant of Maroth waited carefully for good: but evil came down from the LORD unto the gate of Jerusalem.

13 O thou inhabitant of Lachish, bind the chariot to the swift beast: she is the beginning of the sin to the daughter of Zion: for the transgressions of Israel were found in thee.

14 Therefore shalt thou give presents to Moreshethgath: the houses of Achzib shall be a lie to the kings of Israel.

15 Yet will I bring an heir unto thee, O inhabitant of Mareshah: he shall come unto Adullam the glory of Israel.

16 Make thee bald, and poll thee for thy delicate children; enlarge thy baldness as the eagle; for they are gone into captivity from thee.

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Summary and the Meaning of Chapter 1 of the Book of Micah in KJV Holy Bible

The first chapter of the Book of Micah in the King James Version (KJV) of the Holy Bible serves as a vivid introduction to the prophetic messages of Micah. This chapter primarily concerns itself with the impending judgement of God upon the nations of Israel and Judah due to their acts of disobedience and unfaithfulness. Micah, who is identified in the opening verse as a resident of Moresheth, a small town in the southern kingdom of Judah, receives the word of God concerning Samaria and Jerusalem, the capital cities of Israel and Judah respectively.

The chapter begins with a call to all nations and the earth to witness the Lord's judgement. This divine judgement, as articulated by Micah, is not a distant, impersonal force. Rather, it is depicted as an active, powerful presence, like a man treading the high places of the earth. This description of God's impending judgement is both dramatic and terrifying, emphasizing the seriousness of the offence committed by the people of Israel and Judah and the inevitable consequences of their actions.

God's Judgement and the Reason for it

The cause of God's judgement is identified in verse 5 as the "transgression of Jacob" and the "sins of the house of Israel". These transgressions and sins are not specified in this chapter, but the subsequent chapters of the book reveal them to be a mixture of idolatry, injustice, and social corruption. The people of Israel and Judah had turned away from God, rejecting His laws and embracing the practices of the surrounding nations. This rejection of God and His ways had led the people into a state of moral and spiritual decay, prompting God's judgement.

The severity of the judgement is clearly depicted in the prophet's description of the destruction of Samaria and Jerusalem. Samaria, the capital of the northern kingdom of Israel, is to be made "as an heap of the field" and "as plantings of a vineyard". This suggests a complete and utter destruction, a return to a state of uninhabited wilderness. Jerusalem, the capital of the southern kingdom of Judah, is also to suffer a similar fate. The city is to be "brought down to the ground", its foundations exposed for all to see. This dramatic depiction of the cities' destruction serves as an ominous warning of the devastating consequences of disobedience and unfaithfulness to God.

Micah's Lamentation for the Impending Disaster

In the latter part of the chapter, Micah expresses his profound grief and sorrow for the impending disaster. He uses the language of mourning and lamentation, describing himself as a "man of sorrows", walking "stripped and naked", and making a "wailing like the dragons" and a "mourning as the owls". This intense expression of grief serves to underline the magnitude of the disaster and the deep sense of loss that it will bring.

Micah's lamentation also serves as a call to repentance. By expressing his grief and sorrow, he seeks to awaken the people to the seriousness of their situation and to motivate them to turn back to God. In this sense, his lamentation is not just an expression of grief, but also an act of love and concern for his people.

The List of Towns and their Symbolic Significance

Towards the end of the chapter, Micah provides a list of towns in Judah that will suffer the consequences of God's judgement. Each of these towns is associated with a specific judgement or disaster, and their names are often used to create puns or wordplays that highlight the nature of the judgement. For example, the town of Gath is told not to "tell it", a pun on the town's name which means "tell" in Hebrew. Similarly, the inhabitants of Beth-le-aphrah are told to "roll yourself in the dust", a wordplay on the town's name which means "house of dust". These puns and wordplays serve to make the message of judgement more vivid and memorable, reinforcing the seriousness of the situation.

The list of towns also serves to make the message of judgement more personal and immediate. By naming specific towns and describing the specific judgements that they will face, Micah brings the message of judgement out of the abstract and into the concrete reality of the people's lives. This serves to heighten the sense of urgency and to make the need for repentance more pressing.

Conclusion: The Message of Hope and Restoration

Despite the harshness of the judgement depicted in this chapter, the underlying message is one of hope and restoration. The judgement is not an end in itself, but a means to an end. It is a necessary step in the process of bringing the people back to God and restoring their relationship with Him. This message of hope and restoration is a recurring theme in the Book of Micah, and it serves to balance the message of judgement and to provide a sense of perspective. Even in the midst of judgement, there is the promise of a better future, a future in which the people will once again live in obedience and faithfulness to God.

In conclusion, the first chapter of the Book of Micah provides a powerful and vivid depiction of the judgement of God upon the nations of Israel and Judah. Through his dramatic descriptions and his use of language and imagery, Micah brings the message of judgement to life, making it both real and immediate. At the same time, he also provides a message of hope and restoration, reminding his readers that even in the midst of judgement, God's ultimate purpose is to bring His people back to Him.

This article is informed by the King James Version of the Holy Bible, the authors' personal knowledge, considerations and experience, and additional materials and resources available in internet.

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