Micah stood, like ever-so-many prophets of God before and after him, and called out, “Hear, you people, all of you; pay attention, O earth, and all that is in it” (Micah 1:2). He declared a message of judgment, a message repeated as often as needed, which explains why there are seventeen books of the prophets in the Hebrew Bible. “Hear,” cried the prophets. “Do not preach,” responded the people. “One should not preach of such things; disgrace will not overtake us” (Micah 2:6). Actually, it will, and it did–Israel in 722 BC, Judah in 586 BC.
“Hear this, you heads of the house of Jacob and rulers of the house of Israel, who detest justice and make crooked all that is straight” (Micah 3:9)–You had it coming. But every prophet of judgment brings a prospect of hope, “Come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob, that he may teach us his ways and that we may walk in his paths” (Micah 4:2). The path made crooked may again be straightened.
“But you, O Bethlehem Ephrathah, who are too little to be among the clans of Judah, from you shall come forth for me one who is to be ruler in Israel” (Micah 5:2). In a little over seven centuries, wise men will read these words and say, “Wow! He knew.”
But a prophet not only foretells, he forth tells, “He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?” (Micah 6:8). Micah’s main task was immediate, to announce the plan of God and prepare the people to meet their future and forever King of kings.
Lord God, Lest I say to myself, “I have plenty of good things laid up for many years. Take life easy; eat, drink and be merry,” may I never forget that each day is a gift from You. May I store up treasures in Your Kingdom, may I be heavenly minded, may my first love always be You. Then truly will I have life and life to the full. Then truly may I eat, drink, and be glad.