Presentation on theme: "“The prophets speak with conviction and clarity, and at such a volume that they help us hear what we would never hear on our own.” (Ortberg, 92)"— Presentation transcript:
“The prophets speak with conviction and clarity, and at such a volume that they help us hear what we would never hear on our own.” (Ortberg, 92)
Micah Speaks c. 740 – 720 BCE Same time frame as Isaiah 1-39 Primarily addresses crooked politicians, lazy priests greedy “prophets” “They were not just wrongly optimistic, they were wickedly opportunistic.” (Hubbard, 75)
Micah 3:9-11 Hear this, you rulers of the house of Jacob and chiefs of the house of Israel, who abhor justice and pervert all equity, who build Zion with blood and Jerusalem with wrong! Its rulers give judgment for a bribe, its priests teach for a price, its prophets give oracles for money; yet they lean upon the L ORD and say, “Surely the L ORD is with us! No harm shall come upon us.”
Never confuse the patience of God with the approval of God.
So what does God want? Micah 6:6-8 “With what shall I come before the L ORD, and bow myself before God on high? Shall I come before him with burnt offerings, with calves a year old? Will the L ORD be pleased with thousands of rams, with ten thousands of rivers of oil? Shall I give my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?”
“Notice the escalation. Anyone could afford a burnt offering, which would be a small pigeon or a dove. A calf was an expensive gift which many families could never afford. ‘Thousands of rams’ would be an offering only a king could afford, and was almost beyond imagination. ‘10,000 rivers of oil’ was simply impossible. Micah escalates the discussion to the ridiculous. ‘my firstborn’?? He pushes the discussion as far as he can. (Ortberg, 97)
He has told you, O mortal, what is good; and what does the L ORD require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?
Luke 6:31 Do to others as you would have them do to you.
Notice “Let my heart be broken by the things that break the heart of God.” --Bob Pierce, World Vision Pray Pray for justice, and against injustice. Pray for people we encounter, those we read and hear about. Change behavior Be sure we treat the people around us with equity and fairness. Practice kindness. Make eye contact!
Courage “If there are patterns of injustice in our home, at our school, in our workplace, or in our neighborhood, we can learn to enter in and make a difference. This takes courage because we know how people responded to biblical prophets! We have to be ready for people to resist.” Generosity Support great work. International Justice Mission http://www.ijm.org/ Small kindnesses add up. (List from Ortberg, 99)
Looking ahead: During Lent, from March 16 – April 13, this book will shape our study and reflection: The Dangerous Act of Loving Your Neighbor, Mark Labberton, InterVarsity Press, 2010. Mark is on the board of International Justice Mission, and president of Fuller Seminary.