You’ll Lose It All!
Good and loving Lord, You have generously given me so very much in so many areas. I’m so very grateful.
Read Micah 1:1-2:5
 The word of the LORD that came to Micah of Moresheth during the reigns of Jotham, Ahaz and Hezekiah, kings of Judah-the vision he saw concerning Samaria and Jerusalem.  Hear, you peoples, all of you, listen, earth and all who live in it, that the Sovereign LORD may bear witness against you, the Lord from his holy temple.  Look! The LORD is coming from his dwelling place; he comes down and treads on the heights of the earth.  The mountains melt beneath him and the valleys split apart, like wax before the fire, like water rushing down a slope.  All this is because of Jacob’s transgression, because of the sins of the people of Israel. What is Jacob’s transgression? Is it not Samaria? What is Judah’s high place? Is it not Jerusalem?  “Therefore I will make Samaria a heap of rubble, a place for planting vineyards. I will pour her stones into the valley and lay bare her foundations.  All her idols will be broken to pieces; all her temple gifts will be burned with fire; I will destroy all her images. Since she gathered her gifts from the wages of prostitutes, as the wages of prostitutes they will again be used.”  Because of this I will weep and wail; I will go about barefoot and naked. I will howl like a jackal and moan like an owl.  For Samaria’s plague is incurable; it has spread to Judah. It has reached the very gate of my people, even to Jerusalem itself.  Tell it not in Gath; weep not at all. In Beth Ophrah roll in the dust.  Pass by naked and in shame, you who live in Shaphir. Those who live in Zaanan will not come out. Beth Ezel is in mourning; it no longer protects you.  Those who live in Maroth writhe in pain, waiting for relief, because disaster has come from the LORD, even to the gate of Jerusalem.  You who live in Lachish, harness fast horses to the chariot. You are where the sin of Daughter Zion began, for the transgressions of Israel were found in you.  Therefore you will give parting gifts to Moresheth Gath. The town of Akzib will prove deceptive to the kings of Israel.  I will bring a conqueror against you who live in Mareshah. The nobles of Israel will flee to Adullam.  Shave your head in mourning for the children in whom you delight; make yourself as bald as the vulture, for they will go from you into exile.  Woe to those who plan iniquity, to those who plot evil on their beds! At morning’s light they carry it out because it is in their power to do it.  They covet fields and seize them, and houses, and take them. They defraud people of their homes, they rob them of their inheritance.  Therefore, the LORD says: “I am planning disaster against this people, from which you cannot save yourselves. You will no longer walk proudly, for it will be a time of calamity.  In that day people will ridicule you; they will taunt you with this mournful song: ‘We are utterly ruined; my people’s possession is divided up. He takes it from me! He assigns our fields to traitors.'”  Therefore you will have no one in the assembly of the LORD to divide the land by lot. Scripture taken from the THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION, NIV Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
ReflectWhat is the terrible promise from God, and why?
Micah summons the whole world to witness the judgment God will bring upon Israel (2). Jacob (the northern kingdom), Judah (the southern kingdom) and Israel (both kingdoms) have sinned against God and by worshiping idols (5,7). God’s people have found that life is much easier when they create their own gods. These gods really don’t mind how the people behave as long as they feed them with sacrifices. Any kind of sexual behavior is allowed–the wages of the Temple prostitutes can even be used to make more expensive idols (7). Greed and fraud are also allowed, so the rich and powerful can take land (the main form of wealth) from the poor (2:2). But, although the people can create their own gods, they cannot prevent their true God from acting in judgment. Micah is distraught about the message he has to bring (8), but bring it he must. He is a bit of a punster. “Those who live in Reading will have red faces” gives the feel of the puns on place names in verses 10-15. The towns he mentioned form a circle around his home town of Moresheth. But the message Micah brings is no joke.
Talk to God about how you use your money, possessions and time. You may find some surprising new ways to live.
Lord God, I know I may have some blind spots. If so, open my eyes to them so I can change.