JEHOVAH GOD IS COMING . . .
This was the beginning of Micah’s message. It was not a reference to the coming of Jesus Christ in the end times. It was a call to see God coming upon that generation. God’s coming was a disturbing thing to see.
He will come down and tread on the high places of the earth.
Valleys will be split
like wax before a fire
like water poured down from the steep mountains
As He came to Sinai in His glory and power - He is coming again to us. But “why” is He coming? That is what Micah answered here in this first chapter.
God is coming because of the rebellion of His people - for their sin. What was their sin? God says is was because of Samaria and the high place of Judah. What may shock us is that these were places of worship. Samaria was the center of the false religion of Israel that was set up by a former king who made up his own religion for the people to follow. Jerusalem was referred to as “the high place of Judah.” Yes the temple was there - the very one God said to build. But - Judah had turned the worship of the true and living God into a farce - a fraud. It had become “their religion” rather than what God intended.
God told them He was going to make these places a ruin. All of it was going to be burned and the idols of their own making - would be smashed. The money - all the money collected by these religious organizations - were called “harlot’s earnings.” They had prostituted God - especially His worship and what He desired to do among and in the people. In the end - it all was going to be gone.
MICAH IS WEEPING . . .
Micah wept as he saw the vision of this. The Word of the Lord was clear. This all was coming down - and would be destroyed. The people of Israel and Judah may have rejoiced in their false religion - but God was grieved by it. Micah grieved too - as he knew it was coming to an end - a very bad one. He spoke of how it was going to be taken - the gate would fall - the people would be taken into captivity - and destruction was coming. All this . . . because of their sin. They had used God for their own ends - and in the end - God was going to have none of it.
Micah called their wounds, “incurable.” The sin had reached all the way to Jerusalem - it was affecting the whole nation - both Israel and Judah. He didn’t want it told to their enemies. He warned them they would become weak waiting for the good to come. Things were going downward - and they would continue to do so. God was bringing calamity to them. But before we give up completely we should understand something very clearly. God was doing this because He loved them. They were not the nations - they were His people - and they were a part of His covenant. When they rebelled - God promised He would bring discipline on them. It would be stern and was designed to turn them from their evil to seek God again. It is something we should remember - that there is actually hope. But that hope is for those who repent and turn from evil. That hope is for those who return to their God - to worship Him in truth as He is revealed in Scripture. Their self-made religion would have to go. The extent of the judgment was often based on the extent of their rebellion and stubbornness.
WHAT ABOUT US?
Is America any better than Israel and Judah of the 8th century BC? Unfortunately we are not. The religion of our day has steadily moved away from the God of the Scriptures. We’ve taken God and have given Him a supposed upgrade (downgrade is the truth). Today we are blind to what is happening in the world. We are blind to the financial meltdown that IS coming. We blew through the 15 and 20 trillion dollar debt barriers like they were nothing. We think we will continue in prosperity and plenty - while our debt is shaking the financial pillars which were already cracked and faltering. We continue in gross sin - both sexual sin and religious sin. We now call acceptable what God calls immorality - we are hardly concerned at the continued murder of the innocents, as well as the injustice to the innocent - and we continue in a religious hypocrisy that justifies hating those who oppose what we “believe” and stand for - being far too politically minded and far less concerned at the powerlessness of the church.
Indeed God is coming - not in the second coming of Christ. That day is also fast approaching. But the coming of God to America sounds like the coming promised to Israel and Judah in Micah’s day. It is a fearful thing - what is coming. He comes to judge the earth (something He is praised for in the Psalms - but often escapes our worship-lite songs where the word “I” is used far more than His great name). Whether we grasp it or not - mountains melt like wax - valleys split - rocks tremble - and the oceans are troubled at the sound of His arrival. It will not be a judgment upon “them” - but rather a judgment upon “us.” It is meant to discipline and call us to Him anew. It is meant to purify His sons and daughters. It will call us away from selfishness and self-centered religion - and call us to the centrality of the gospel - making it known to a generation that desperately needs to hear it. They need to hear it - but won’t until they first SEE it in our lives.
What should be our response? It should be as Micah’s response. We should weep over what is coming - and what has come before leading up to it. Our hearts should be broken over the “nones” who want nothing to do with God because of what they’ve seen from the outside of the church. We should also be broken over the “dones” - who are done with religion, with the Bible, and with God because of what they’ve seen from the inside of the church. We should first fall to our own knees - crying out to God for a return - that our hearts would return to Him. We should also cry for Him to be exalted once gain in our thinking - in our hearts - and in our churches. I need to give you a loving warning if you continue to read this set of posts about Micah. This is going to be a difficult set of articles to read - but I promise that I will do my best to only write what is written in the Scriptures. There will also be precious promises for those who return - of God’s restoration among His people who repent. But I write these things as one who is very aware that such a message as this is not common - nor is it very welcome in our day - in the days of Clinton, Bush, Obama, and Trump. Honestly though - it is so very needed - even as it was in the days of Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah.