The restored majesty (Nah 2:2-2:2)

“Yahweh is restoring

The majesty of Jacob.

He is restoring

The majesty of Israel,

Even though ravagers

Have ravaged them.

They have ruined

Their branches.”

Yahweh was going to restore the majesty of Jacob and Israel, both the north and the south.  Even though they had been ravaged, even though some of their branches had been ruined, they would be restored.

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Yahweh recalls his saving action from Egypt (Mic 6:3-6:4)

“O my people!

What have I done

To you?

In what have I wearied you?

Answer me!

I brought you up

From the land of Egypt.

I redeemed you

From the house of slavery.

I sent before you

Moses,

Aaron,

Miriam.”

Yahweh, via Micah, recalled his saving action from Egypt.  He had saved his people, Israel from slavery.  He had done so much for the Israelites.  He wanted them to remember that he had weaned them as a new country.  He had sent 3 great leaders like Moses, Aaron, and Miriam, all from one family in Egypt.

Micah was the exception (Mic 3:8-3:8)

“But as for me,

I am filled

With power,

With the Spirit of Yahweh.

I am filled

With justice.

I am filled

With might.

I declare

To Jacob

His transgression,

I declare

To Israel

His sin.”

Micah was the exception to these false prophets.  He was filled with the power of the Holy Spirit of Yahweh.  He was filled with justice and might.  He was willing to declare to Jacob his transgressions.  He was willing to declare to Israel his sins.  Micah was not afraid to speak out and challenge the people of northern Israel and southern Judah.

Against the lying prophets (Mic 3:5-3:7)

“Thus says Yahweh

Concerning the prophets,

Who lead my people astray.

‘They cry

‘Peace!’

When they have something

To eat.

But they declare war

Against those who put

Nothing into their mouths.

Therefore,

It shall be night to you,

Without vision.

It shall be darkness to you,

Without revelation.

The sun shall go down

Upon the prophets.

The day shall be black

Over them.

The seers shall be disgraced.

The diviners put to shame.

They shall all cover their lips.

There is no answer

From God.’”

This was another bitter rebuke of the prophetic leaders in Israel and Jacob.  These prophets had led Yahweh’s people astray.  They had cried peace to those who give them something to eat, but they declared war on those who did not give them anything to eat.  Thus, they would live in a night like condition without any vision.  There would be darkness, without any revelation.  The sun would go down on these evil prophets, so that their days would be pitch dark all around them.  The seers would be disgraced, while the diviners would be ashamed.  They would have nothing to say, because God would not answer them.

The bad rulers (Mic 3:1-3:3)

“I said.

‘Listen!

You officials

Of Jacob!

You rulers

Of the house of Israel!

Should you not know justice?

You hate the good!

You love the evil!

You tear the skin

Off my people!

You tear the flesh

Off their bones!

You eat the flesh

Of my people!

You flay their skin

Off them!

You break their bones

In pieces!

You chop them up

Like meat in a kettle,

Like flesh in a caldron!’”

Micah has a bitter rebuke concerning the savage behavior of the leaders in Israel and Jacob.  Yahweh, via Micah, used descriptive language to explain what these leaders were doing to their people, treating them like cattle.  Micah wanted them to listen to what he had to say.  They hated the good things, but loved the evil things.  They were skinning the people, tearing off their flesh, and eating them like cannibals.  They were breaking their bones and chopping them up to boil them like meat in a kettle.  This was despicable behavior.

The breaking of the peace (Mic 2:8-2:10)“But you rise Against my people As an enemy. You strip the robe From the peaceful, From those who pass by Trustingly, With no thought of war. You drive out The women Of my people From their pleasant houses. You take away From their young children My glory forever. Arise! Go! This is no place To rest. Because uncleanness Destroys With a grievous destruction.” Micah pointed out that this was no longer a time of peace. The people of Israel had treated their own people, the people of Yahweh in Israel, like they were an enemy. They had taken their clothes, including the robes of the peaceful and trusting ones, as if there was a war. They had driven out the young women from their pleasant homes. They had taken away the glory of Yahweh from the young children. Israel was no longer a restful place anymore, because uncleanliness had brought great destruction to this place.

“But you rise

Against my people

As an enemy.

You strip the robe

From the peaceful,

From those who pass by

Trustingly,

With no thought of war.

You drive out

The women

Of my people

From their pleasant houses.

You take away

From their young children

My glory forever.

Arise!

Go!

This is no place

To rest.

Because uncleanness

Destroys

With a grievous destruction.”

Micah pointed out that this was no longer a time of peace.  The people of Israel had treated their own people, the people of Yahweh in Israel, like they were an enemy.  They had taken their clothes, including the robes of the peaceful and trusting ones, as if there was a war.  They had driven out the young women from their pleasant homes.  They had taken away the glory of Yahweh from the young children.  Israel was no longer a restful place anymore, because uncleanliness had brought great destruction to this place.

Against Lachish (Mic 1:13-1:13)

“Harness the steeds

To the chariots!

Inhabitants of Lachish!

It was here that

The beginning of sin came

To the daughter of Zion.

The transgressions

Of Israel

Were found in you.”

Lachish was the most famous and well know city of the Shephelah low land area of Israel.  Lachish was the 2nd most important city in Judah, but not a holy city like Jerusalem.  This might indicate that these other towns were close to Lachish in the same area.  The people of Lachish were to get their horses and chariots ready, because they were the cause of the sin and the beginning of the transgressions for Zion and Israel.  The Assyrians had captured this city in 701 BCE.