April 3, 2011

Minor Prophets LV: Under The Heel of God

When we compare the superscription of Micah 1:1 with the kings listed in Hosea 1:1 and Isaiah 1:1 we see some old familiar names.

“The word of the LORD that came to Micah of Moresheth during the reigns of Jotham, Ahaz and Hezekiah, kings of Judah--the vision he saw concerning Samaria and Jerusalem.” Micah 1:1

This just about looks like a cut-and-paste from Hosea and Isaiah. When we look specifically at the dates we can see a parallels in Scripture in other superscriptions:

The vision concerning Judah and Jerusalem that Isaiah son of Amoz saw during the reigns of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz and Hezekiah, kings of Judah” Isaiah 1:1.

The word of the LORD that came to Hosea son of Beeri during the reigns of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz and Hezekiah, kings of Judah, and during the reign of Jeroboam son of Jehoash king of Israel... Hosea 1:1

Micah, Hosea and Isaiah were contemporaries and their ministries overlapped or were so close together to be indistinguishable from one another. Hosea was a prophet in the northern kingdom of Israel. Micah a prophet for Judah along with Isaiah. Three prophets of God in the land as small as modern day Israel. The Almighty was clearly and seriously trying to get peoples attention. The place was crawling with prophets and these were the ones that made it into the Bible. There were obviously others.

Reading further we come to Micah 1:3-4 and the picture painted is not rosey...nor is it new. We see parallels to David and Psalm 18. Both speak of God's descent into the realm of man from the heavenly realms. You know you've screwed-up when the king has to come down off His throne to throttle you.

The first comparison that needs to be noted between Micah 1:3-4 and Psalms 18: Anthropomorphisms Galore (or allusions to). They are all over both of these passages especially Psalms 18. We see cataclysmic effects upon the earth (Micah) mountains melt beneath, valleys split apart (Psalms) earth trembles and quakes, foundations of mountains shook-because God was angry. He is at first angered in his heavenly/elevated dwelling place and then is moved enough to leave His normal residence to affect a change.

The verb used in Micah “coming from” or “coming forth” denotes a one that comes forth for battle in war. If stirred to this level of anger, God will be coming to crush His enemies/sin. Once on the “warpath”, nothing can stand in the face of God, even heaven and the mountains themselves. A holy God is nothing to trifle with (Wiersbe 390). To take this one step further it is interesting the terms and allusions to mountains and “high places” are made because these terms can serve a two-fold purpose. They could be in reference to the pagan altars or “high places” or in the case of military jargon…God would be coming to destroy or take strategically important points or “high ground”. Once high ground is taken in battle and enemy is at a distinct disadvantage. If these to ideas are combined we see God coming to take pagan high ground to undermine and the hold evil has on the nation and thereby destroy it.

The descriptions in Micah and Psalms appear to have a blending of transcendent God with an imminent or existent world. God leaves eternity to enter time affect a change in humanity contrary to the belief of our deistic friends.

Wiersbe, Warren W.. "Micah: Chapter 1: Judgment is Coming." The Bible Exposition Commentary-Old Testament-The Prophets. 1. print. ed. Colorado Springs, Colo.: Victor, 2001. 390. Print.

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