Journal Micah 1 (all references are from the ESV; changes in punctuation are mine)
Scripture: “Hear, you peoples, all of you; pay attention, O earth, and all that is in it, and let the Lord GOD be a witness against you, the Lord from his holy temple.
For behold, the LORD is coming out of his place, and will come down and tread upon the high places of the earth. And the mountains will melt under him, and the valleys will split open (like wax before the fire, like waters poured down a steep place).
All this is for the transgression of Jacob and for the sins of the house of Israel.” Micah 1:2-5
Observation: Aren’t I glad the Holy Spirit gave the New Testament? I would have to work 4-5 times as hard to learn the Gospel….
Analysis: I have been thinking about Micah the last few days; what am I trying to glean from Micah, what are You saying to me, Lord?
There are some books (minor prophets) and some chapters in the various books of the Old Testament that are very focused on that time of their life. In a contrary way, the New Testament is much of a well stated summary of the doctrines and principles found (with some difficulty) in the Old Testament.
So, what do I do when trying to seriously read in the OT?
I am aware I am looking for the “gotcha” statement; that verse or verses that I can pluck out and hang it on the wall of my house and say, “There is the promise of God.” (Of course, while it looks and sounds cool, maybe I took it out of context? Take a look at the context surrounding Philippians 4:4.)
Therefore, I must split that attention and not only be aware of those promises, but also look at the greater message: What was being communicated to Israel (and surrounding communities) at large? What was God saying to Israel specifically and the nations of the earth secondarily?
I am also aware that I need to look at the historical context…from God’s POV through the prophets. Taking Micah 1:5 as the “gain of function” statement (to pull the phrase out of today’s news), the objective/goal statement is succinct: “All this for the transgression of Jacob and for the sins of the house of Israel…”
There may not be a “gotcha” statement available. There is always a “God’s objective” statement—it wouldn’t be the Living Word of God if it was not. It is where Doctrines, Principles, and Precepts are found.
We stand on the shoulders of the Apostles, Prophets, Fathers, Scholars, Leaders of the Faith because of their ability to shrink down the Word of God into things that we can remember.
Musicians are in this group as well. They allow us to sing the Doctrines of the Church in catchy, easy to remember songs and lyrics to reinforce the Faith. While certainly there were others, Charles and John Wesley led the pack in the 1700’s by putting godly lyrics to catchy music of the time. We still sing them today.
What has this to do with Micah this morning? Nothing directly, I suppose. This is what dropped in my heart meditating before the Lord God.
Prayer: Lord, thank you for dropping this in my heart in the last few days. I hope I got it right, and for me, it will affect the process of the reading of your Word.