Micah (book of the Bible)

Prophet and author of the Book of Micah. Apparently originating from Moreset-gat (Mi. 1:14), undoubtedly in Judah , not far from Gat , the Philistine city on which Micah’s hometown depended for a certain time. He prophesied during the reigns of Jotham , [[ Ahaz and Hezekiah (Mi. 1: 1; Jer. 26:18); began his career shortly after Hosea and Isaiah]], his contemporaries (Mi. 1: 1; cf. Is. 1: 1; Hos. 1: 1). Micah, closer to Isaiah, deals with the same great themes as he, as Calvin correctly pointed out.

Summary

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  • 1 Micah (Book)
  • 2 Style
  • 3 Date
  • 4 Contents of the book
  • 5 Authenticity
  • 6 Bibliography

Micah (Book)

It is the sixth of the minor prophets.

Style

His style is simple, elegant, direct, The prophet openly denounces sin (Mi. 1: 5; 2: 1, 2; 6: 10-12). Transitions are often abrupt, but the reason can almost always be discerned. Micah throws up questions (Mi. 1: 5; 2: 7; 4: 9; 6: 3, 6, 7, 10, 11), ironizes (Mi. 2:11), uses a metaphor, prolongs it (Mi. 1 : 6; 3: 2, 3, 6; 4: 6-8, 13; 6:10, 11, 14, 15). He is fond of word games, using them abundantly in the first chapter, and perhaps one appears in the last paragraph of the book. His speech, in praise of Jehovah, is based on the question: “What God like you?”, A phrase that corresponds, in Hebrew, to the name Micah. Micah’s faith is based on what he knows about God by his law and by his way of acting towards the people and towards the individuals (Mi. 2: 7; 6: 3-5; 7:15). The Lord, a just judge, loves mercy. He demands that his people practice justice and charity. The prophet exhibits strength and courage wrapped in divine promises. He knows that the security of Israel rests on the covenant of God with his people, on the promise of salvation made to Abraham (Mi. 7:20) and that it focuses on the Son of David (Mi. 5: 2-6; cf. Lk. 1: 72-75). The enemies of the Kingdom could not prevail. The cap. 5 is based on the same messianic truth as that of Ps. 2; it is based on the declarations of God, like the sublime message of forgiveness and restoration of Me. 7: 8-20. 20) and that focuses on the Son of David (Mi. 5: 2-6; cf. Lk. 1: 72-75). The enemies of the Kingdom could not prevail. The cap. 5 is based on the same messianic truth as that of Ps. 2; it is based on the declarations of God, like the sublime message of forgiveness and restoration of Me. 7: 8-20. 20) and that focuses on the Son of David (Mi. 5: 2-6; cf. Lk. 1: 72-75). The enemies of the Kingdom could not prevail. The cap. 5 is based on the same messianic truth as that of Ps. 2; it is based on the declarations of God, like the sublime message of forgiveness and restoration of Me. 7: 8-20.

Date

The prophecy begins under Jotam (Mi. 1: 1) and runs from 745 to 715 BC. The context shows that, being after Omri and Ahab (Mi. 6:16), it dates back to the time when Israel feared the threatening power of Assyria (Mi. 5: 5, 6). The book was written, at least partially, during the time when Samaria and the northern kingdom still existed (Mi. 1: 6, 14). About my. 1: 5-7, it cannot be determined how long before the fall of Samaria these words were spoken. Indeed, from the time of Uzziah and Jotham, the prophets announced that the judgment of Samaria was imminent (Hos. 1: 6; 3: 4; 5: 9; Am. 2: 6; 3:12; 5: 1 -3, 27; 6: 1, 7-11, 14; Is. 7: 8, 9; 8: 4), and that Judah would be devastated (Hos. 5:10; Am. 2: 4; Jl. 6: 1, 11-13; 7: 17-25). The allusion to the devastation of Bashan and Gilead could be an indication of a period after 733-732 BC, the year in which Tiglat-pileser deported its inhabitants (Wed. 7:14). This verse mentions the establishment of the Israelites in this country since the conquest of Joshua (cf. Mi. 7:14, 20). My proclamation. 3:12 was given as early as Hezekiah, but Micah may have announced this catastrophe earlier.

Content of the book

Although centered on Judah and the southern kingdom, Micah’s prophecies deal with the whole of Israel (Mi. 1: 1, 5-7, 9-16). Abrupt transitions indicate that the book summarizes the prophet’s teaching, rather than constituting a transcript of his various discourses. The imperative “hear!” repeated three times introduces three sections, each of which ends with a note of hope.

Sanctions against Samaria, due to her idolatry (Mi. 1: 2-8) and against Judah for the same reason (Mi. 1: 9-16). Curse against the oppressors of the people; prophecy of ruin and deportation (Mi. 2: 4, 5), because of the lack of honesty and the injustice and corruption of the great (Mi. 2: 1-11); however, there will be a residue that will be restored (Mi. 2:12, 13).

Denunciation of the sins of the princes, followed by messianic prophecies. The civil and religious authorities did not care for the truth or the law; his way of ruling revealed his vanity (Mi. 3: 1-11). Jehovah will abandon Zion to his enemies (Mi 3:12). The future greatness of the Messianic Kingdom is revealed, which will exert a moral influence on all men in peace, prosperity, and power (Mi. 4: 1-8). The current perspective only presents clamor, pain and captivity (Mi. 4: 9, 10); but Zion will end up crushing his enemies, who oppose Jehovah (Mi. 4: 11-13). The prophet speaks of the dejection of Zion (Mi. 5: 1), a dejection that will cease to be when the One whose origin goes back to the days of eternity will reign over Israel (Mi. 5: 2-4). This divine predestination of the Messiah guarantees the liberation of the Assyrian yoke (Mi. 5: 5, 6; cf. Is. 7: 4-16), the survival of Israel, its final triumph over all its enemies; finally, the people will be molded to the divine ideal (Mi. 5: 7-14).

Requisition against all the people (Mi. 6: 1-5). Exposition of the demands of the true religion (Mi. 6: 6-8; cf. Is. 1: 11-17). The Lord stigmatizes iniquity (Mi. 6: 9-7: 6). The prophet concludes by proclaiming his faith in the glorious future that Jehovah’s merciful grace will bring, based on his covenant with Abraham (Mi. 7: 7-20). The passage of Mi. 4:13 is almost identical with Isa. 2: 2-4, but is more closely related to the following verses than to the Isaiah passage. Jl. 3:10 expresses the same messianic thought. It is quite possible that Isaiah is the one who quotes Micah. But the differences in terms between Isaiah and Micah could be explained by the assumption that each of them was based on a prediction current in his time. In any case, the people of God of those times could well rely on the known prophecies,

Authenticity

The authenticity of this book has been questioned. There are critics who do not assign Micah more than the first three chapters. But GA Smith, having said that “no other book in the Bible has sparked so many discussions regarding the dates of its different sections,” concludes by stating that the entire work dates back to the time of Micah (cf. GT Manley, “Le Nouveau Manuel de la Bible”, p. 252). On the other hand, the repetition of the expression: “Hear …” is an indication of the unity of style and author (Mi. 1: 2; 3: 1; 6: 1; cf. 5:14). The fact that the book summarizes the various messages proclaimed in various circumstances and for a sufficiently long time is sufficient to explain its lack of a strictly logical development. You can see in this text a good number of passages parallel to those written by other prophets who lived more or less contemporaneously. There’s P. eg, several points in common with Isaiah (Mi. 1: 9 and Is. 10: 28-32; Mi. 2: 2 and Is. 5: 8; Mi. 3: 6 and Is. 8:10; Mi. 5 : 3, 7, 8 and Is. 11:11; Wed. 7:11 and Is. 5: 5). Like Amos, Hosea, and Isaiah, the prophet Micah speaks of the greatness of God (Mi. 1: 2, 4), of his holiness (Mi. 6: 8), of the sin of unfaithful people (Mi. 6: 3 , 4), of social injustices (Mi. 6:10, 15), of the degeneration of the priesthood (Mi. 3: 5). Critical opinion is flawed by the theory of evolution (much in vogue since Wellhausen’s time), applied to the religious notions of prophets and sacred authors. According to the evolutionary conception, certain theological ideas of Micah (such as Isaiah, etc. ) could not have known a certain development before a late date. But it is all pure speculation that was believed to be plausible more than a hundred years ago, in the absence of concrete investigations. However, archaeological excavations have shown a very different scene (notably see EGYPT, MARDIKH, and see also Custance in Bibliography at the end of this article). It should also be noted that Micah knew the Pentateuch and that the legal framework of Deuteronomy (Mi. 3: 5-7; cf. Dt. 18: 15-22), with its prohibitions (Mi. 5:11; Dt. 18:10) and its punishments (Mi. 6:15; Dt. 28:38). The prophet mentions the exodus from Egypt (Mi. 6: 4; 7:15), the conquest (Mi. 6: 5), and quotes the great figures of Abraham, Jacob, Moses and Aaron (Mi. 7:20; 6 :4). What Micah says about servitude to foreign powers and deportation (Mi. 1: 15-16; 2: 3-5, 10) is within the line of Dt. 28: 31-37, 47-53 (cf. Is. 1: 19-20; 5:13; 6: 11-13; 7: 3). Micah 4:10 announces that the place of exile will beBabylon, like Is. 39: 6-7 (cf. Is. 11:11, Sinar). The messianic elements are also in perfect agreement with the previous and contemporary revelations: meeting of Israel, which triumphs thanks to its king (Mi. 2: 12-13); peace and prosperity of Zion, salvation of the Gentiles (Mi. 4: 1-8); the person of the Messiah, his birth and reign (Mi. 5: 1-8). It is indisputable that these truths were known in the time of Micah (cf. Is. 2: 2-4; 4: 2-6; 8: 23-9: 6; 10: 20-22; 11: 1-10; Am 9: 11-15; Hos. 11: 8-11). Finally, the universalist notion of the scope of salvation appears, not limited to a single nation, but reaching all nations (Mi. 4: 1-3; cf. Gen. 18:18, 25; Ps. 72: 8 -11; 15. 49: 6; 55: 5) and the eschatological idea of ​​an attack by all nations against the finally restored Zion also appears (Mi. 4: 11-13; cf. JI. 3: 2, 12; also Zac 12: 3, 9; 14: 2). The passage of Mi. 5: 1-3, quoted by Mt. 2: 5-6, is particularly dear to the heart of the Christian, and to Me. 6 and 7 are some of the most beautiful verses in Scripture.

 

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