Lessons from the Book of Micah
The name Micah means “Who is like Yahweh?” The prophet’s name showed that none can compare to Yahweh. He prophesied between 735 and 710 BC, during the reigns of Kings Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah (1:1). Micah prophesied concerning both Israel and Judah. The book serves to guide us in our lives today. There are many practical lessons we can learn from Micah:
God expects to be first.
At the beginning of the book, Micah prophesied, “All her images shall be beaten to pieces, all her wages shall be burned with fire, and all her idols I will lay waste” (1:7). Judah and Israel had replaced Yahweh with their idols. The Bible teaches that God is a jealous God (Ex. 20:5). God doesn’t want us to divide our interest. He wants our total devotion.
Some people don’t want the truth.
“‘Do not preach’—thus they preach—‘one should not preach of such things; disgrace will not overtake’” (2:6). Micah’s hearers did not want to hear want God wanted them to hear. They wanted to hear smooth words. Some people today don’t want the truth. But, like Micah, God’s servants must preach the truth anyway.
God has a remnant.
“I will surely gather all of you, O Jacob, I will gather the survivors of Israel; I will set them together like sheep in a fold, like a flock in its pasture; it will resound with people” (2:12). No matter how evil Judah and Israel became, some still stood for God’s truth. Not everyone turned from God. Today, even though things may at times look bleak, God has a remnant.
God doesn’t hear the prayers of the wicked.
“Then they will cry to the LORD, but he will not answer them; he will hide his face from them at that time, because they have acted wickedly” (3:4). Because people acted wickedly, God would not hear their prayers. God does not hear the prayers of wicked people. We need to live in such a way that God will hear our prayers.
God promised his church.
“In days to come the mountain of the LORD’s house shall be established as the highest of the mountain, and shall be raised up above the hills” (4:1). God promised his church. The church was not some after-thought, but God promised in the Old Testament to build his church.
Undesirables have a place in the church.
“In that day, says the LORD, I will assemble the lame and gather those who have been driven away, and those whom I have afflicted. The lame I will make the remnant, and those who were cast off, a strong nation” (4:6-7). Some people are not popular; society looks down on them. But, they have a place in the church. The church is a place where people can come together and be accepted by God.
God promised a Messiah.
“From you [Bethlehem] shall come forth for me one who is to rule in Israel, whose origin is from of old, from ancient days” (5:2). God knew man needed redemption. He did not send Jesus at the last minute, but he intended to send Jesus from all eternity.
God cares about our hearts.
“He has told you, O mortal, 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?” (6:8). god cares how we act outwardly, but as shown here he cares primarily about our heart. God is concerned that we act justly, love kindness, and walk humbly with him. We act justly in an outward way. But we love kindness and walk humbly with god more in an inward than outward way. In order to please God, our hearts must be right.
God forgives his people.
“Who is a God like you, pardoning iniquity and passing over the transgression of the remnant of your possession? He does not retain his anger forever, because he delights in showing clemency” (7:18). No matter how down and out man gets, God can forgive. God wants to forgive. Micah even says that God “delights in showing clemency.” Our God wants communion with his people. He will forgive us if we turn to him.
The book of Micah is rich. It teaches us much about our relationship with God. It shows us how we can please God. It shows us that God wants to be in our lives. It is truly “heaven sent.”