April 7, 2011

Minor Prophet LIX: Redeemed Out of the Hand of Your Enemies

Micah presents us with a dual message of warning and hope in Micah 4:6-13?

“In that day” which is the “latter days” mentioned in Micah 4:1, the remnant of the Jews will be small, weak and lame but the Lord will re-gather them together. From that day forward God will rule over them on Mt. Zion. In verse 8 we see that not only will they be gathered together and initially they will be lame but later they will become a “stronghold or Daughter Zion (a proper noun) meaning Jerusalem. Their former dominion will be restored to them as it was before. Kingship will come to Daughter Jerusalem and that king will be the Shepherd of the flock mentioned in verse 8-Jesus Christ.

The prophet immediately shifts back to the present and presents the fact that the city was currently in travail (v.9-10) like a land that has no king, like pain that seizes a woman in labor. Babylonian forces had arrived and they were being carted away to Babylon. But this was not the end for them, God would redeem the remnant. The people had not listened to the prophet Jeremiah and surrendered the city the city and the temple laid in ruin after being razed to the ground. They were now being exiled: “for now you must leave the city to camp in the open field. You will go to Babylon.” But Jeremiah had also said they would only spend 70 years in exile so…”there you will be rescued. There the LORD will redeem you out of the hand of your enemies.”

We again see another shift back to what appears to be nations surrounding God’s people militarily. They do so in a gloating manner because they seem to be surrounded and about to pounce on Zion. But in truth God has gathered them to be “threshed” by Israel herself. The “horns of iron” are symbols of strength. The wealth of these nations will become the Lord’s who is Lord of all the earth. What is not mentioned in this last stanza is a time. We know the last portion referred to the time of Babylonian exile but this portion appears to be in the more distant future. More than likely Micah is referring here to the Battle of Armageddon---which will take place when the Messiah returns to establish His kingdom.

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