Thursday, October 16, 2008

The Minor Prophet Micah, in a Nutshell

  1. Israel and Judah have sinned
    1. They will be crushed accordingly.
    2. "Yet I will bring an heir to you.... The glory of Israel shall come ...."
  2. Woe to those who plot wickedness and evil
    1. The evildoers "covet and seize fields; and houses, and take them away. And they oppress a man and his household, even a man and his inheritance."
    2. Therefore, Yahweh is planning a disaster for you.
    3. "Lately my people have risen up as an enemy [to me]. You strip the robe and clothing from those who pass by trustingly, those returning from war. You drive the women of my people out from their pleasant houses; From their young children you take away my blessing forever."
    4. You listen to false prophets.
  3. Political Leaders are your problem
    1. You leaders and judges should know justice.
    2. But instead, you "hate the good, and love the evil".
    3. You have cannibalized your people, and they will cry to me.
    4. But I won't listen to them, because they have followed your example.
    5. You prophets going around preaching "Peace" are using your supporters for your financial gain, and when they refuse to feed you, you turn against them in war, in direct opposition to your message. Therefore you prophets will not benefit from my Spirit; your prophetic communications from me will cease.
    6. But one message I will give to you: you leaders are evil, abhoring justice and perverting equity.
      1. You claim to be doing the work of God, but you're really in it for the money.
      2. And you'll stoop to corruption for that money, rather than doing your job properly.
      3. Because of the evil of the rulers, the whole nation will suffer. It's your fault they suffer.
  4. Yet in the Future, Jerusalem will be the headquarters of Righteousness for not just the Jews, but for people of all nations
    1. People of all nations will come to me.
    2. And I will be their judge.
    3. Implements of war will no longer be needed; they'll be converted to domestic tools.
    4. You'll be able to relax at home without worry about attack.
    5. The other nations will have their own ways, but Yahweh will be supreme over all.
    6. And when that happens, those who are suffering will get restitution.
    7. Right now, you Israelites are going through a rough time; being taken captive, all the nations hating you, and all. But this is just temporary. You'll be made strong again, and I'll take their plunder from them, as Lord of the whole earth.
  5. A Ruler is Coming, and He's Special
    1. O Little town of Bethlehem, you'll be the birthplace of this ruler.
    2. This ruler is of old; his goings forth are from eternity.
    3. He'll let the current struggle continue, until the appropriate time.
    4. When it's time, he'll gather his other brothers back into the fold of the Chosen People.
    5. He will come in the name of Yahweh his God.
    6. He will bring Peace, and will defend his people against attack.
    7. His people will be sprinkled throughout all the nations.
    8. He will purge the world of self-trusting defenses, of idols, of witchcraft and sorceries and fortune-telling.
    9. And on the nations that refuse to listen, anger will be executed, with a vengeance.
  6. Yahweh has a controversy with his people
    1. I've freed you from slavery.
    2. I've given you good leaders, both male and female.
    3. Your enemy wanted you cursed by a prophet, but I turned the prophet's cursings into blessings.
    4. And yet you weary yourselves trying to figure out how to worship me.
    5. Here's what I want from you:
      1. All I want from you is for you "to act justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God".
      2. The city should provide recognition of me in public.
    6. But because you cheat your customers in your everyday transactions, and think you can get by with violence because you have money, and lie, I've made you sick as a nation. This economic downturn you're experiencing, which will lead to your ruin and shame, is your fault for your unethical ways.
  7. Woe is me; I'm living in a fallen world, and it can't get up
    1. Poverty has struck me.
    2. Everyone's out to get me.
    3. "The Man" is corrupt; even the best of them are like thorns.
    4. You can't trust anyone, even who you're sleeping with.
    5. My kids have screwed me over; all my family is against me.
    6. Yet, I can turn to Yahweh.
    7. Even if I fall, and my enemies laugh at me when I do, I can arise again because of Yahweh.
    8. I will suffer Yahweh's disapproval, because I deserve it; I've sinned.
    9. But then He'll plead my case, and execute judgement for me, not against me.
    10. He'll bring me to the light, and I'll see it.
    11. My enemy will see it also, and will be ashamed for taunting me with "Where is Yahweh your God?", and then she'll be the one that's trodden down.
    12. A land is made desolate because of the fruits of the doings of its inhabitants.
    13. The nation that trusts in its own strength will be ashamed, but the nation which is shepherded by Yahweh will see great things.
    14. There is no God like Yahweh, who gets over his anger and is full of compassion.
    15. The nations will come to Yahweh in fear and awe.
    16. Yahweh "will give truth to Jacob, and mercy to Abraham, As [was] sworn to our fathers from the days of old."
Or at least, that's the way I read it.

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