Micah was a contemporary of Isaiah, and
prophesied during the reigns of Jotham, Ahaz, and
Hezekiah. Jotham and Hezekiah were good kings who
helped the nation, but Ahaz was a wicked man who sold
the nation into idolatry. Thus the great prophet Micah
saw his nation go through both good and bad times.
The Book of Micah is composed of three sermons
preached to the people, and each message begins with
the word, “Hear.” The theme of chapters 1 and 2 is the
coming judgment of God. God had spoken to Micah and
warned him that the sins of the people were so great
that He must send judgment. He names the capital
cities–Jerusalem, the capital of Judah, the Southern
Kingdom; and Samaria, the capital of Israel, the
Northern Kingdom (chapter 1). In fact, in his first
message, Micah names twelve cities and points out their
sins, which were polluting the whole nation.
In chapter 1:5 God names the sin of idolatry
that was being committed by the people. They insisted
on worshiping the works of their own hands.
In chapter 2:1 we see the sin of covetousness.
The people were not only covetous, but used illegal
means to get what they wanted. Verse 2 says they used
fraud, threats, and violence. The rich took advantage
of the poor, and the rulers did not follow the Word of
Micah’s heart was broken when he heard the
awful message of judgment from God. He wept and
mourned, then he sent a personal message to each of the
wicked cities, warning them that the day of God’s wrath
was imminent. The people reacted to Micah’s warnings by
trying to stop him from preaching. But Micah continued
to preach as the Spirit of God compelled him to do. He
knew the people did not want to hear his preaching;
they preferred that of their drunken false prophets who
lived as wickedly as they did.
In chapter 4 Micah’s preaching turns from
judgment to hope. His message is one of hope for future
peace on the earth, with righteousness reigning
supreme. He explains in our reading tomorrow that peace
would be a reality because the Deliverer would come.