Today’s devotion comes from Nahum chapter 3.  Here is a link to this chapter – https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Nahum+3&version=NASB

My next devotion, God willing, will be February 26, 2018.  I will be going to areas of Arizona to hike, including the Grand Canyon, with 8 Christian high school classmates.  We go every 3 years.  This is our sixth trip.  It is a great time of adventure and Christian fellowship.  Please keep us in your prayers.  Thank you.

I quote only the following verses.

“Woe to the bloody city, completely full of lies and pillage;
Her prey never departs.
2 The noise of the whip,
The noise of the rattling of the wheel,
Galloping horses
And bounding chariots!
3 Horsemen charging,
Swords flashing, spears gleaming,
Many slain, a mass of corpses,
And countless dead bodies—
They stumble over the dead bodies!
4 All because of the many harlotries of the harlot,
The charming one, the mistress of sorceries,
Who sells nations by her harlotries
And families by her sorceries.
5 “Behold, I am against you,” declares the LORD of hosts;
“And I will lift up your skirts over your face,
And show to the nations your nakedness
And to the kingdoms your disgrace.
6 “I will throw filth on you
And make you vile,
And set you up as a spectacle.
7 “And it will come about that all who see you
Will shrink from you and say,
‘Nineveh is devastated!
Who will grieve for her?’
Where will I seek comforters for you?”  Nahum 3:1-7.

———————-

“O LORD, You are my God;
I will exalt You, I will give thanks to Your name;
For You have worked wonders,
Plans formed long ago, with perfect faithfulness.
2 For You have made a city into a heap,
A fortified city into a ruin;
A palace of strangers is a city no more,
It will never be rebuilt.
3 Therefore a strong people will glorify You;
Cities of ruthless nations will revere You.
4 For You have been a defense for the helpless,
A defense for the needy in his distress,
A refuge from the storm, a shade from the heat;
For the breath of the ruthless
Is like a rain storm against a wall.
5 Like heat in drought, You subdue the uproar of aliens;
Like heat by the shadow of a cloud, the song of the ruthless is silenced.”  Isaiah 25:1-5.

Posted by: Bill Hornbeck | February 13, 2018

“God will let me look triumphantly upon my foes.”

Today’s devotion comes from Nahum chapter 2.  Here is a link to this chapter – https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Nahum+2&version=NASB

I quote only the following verses.

“2 For the LORD will restore the splendor of Jacob
Like the splendor of Israel,
Even though devastators have devastated them
And destroyed their vine branches.

8 Though Nineveh was like a pool of water throughout her days,
Now they are fleeing;
“Stop, stop,”
But no one turns back.
9 Plunder the silver!
Plunder the gold!
For there is no limit to the treasure—
Wealth from every kind of desirable object.
10 She is emptied!  Yes, she is desolate and waste!
Hearts are melting and knees knocking!
Also anguish is in the whole body
And all their faces are grown pale!
11 Where is the den of the lions
And the feeding place of the young lions,
Where the lion, lioness and lion’s cub prowled,
With nothing to disturb them?
12 The lion tore enough for his cubs,
Killed enough for his lionesses,
And filled his lairs with prey
And his dens with torn flesh.

13 “Behold, I am against you,” declares the Lord of hosts.  “I will burn up her chariots in smoke, a sword will devour your young lions;  I will cut off your prey from the land, and no longer will the voice of your messengers be heard.”  Nahum 2:2 and 8-13.

———————

“Deliver me from my enemies, O my God;
Set me securely on high away from those who rise up against me.
2 Deliver me from those who do iniquity
And save me from men of bloodshed.”  Psalm 59:1-2.

“6 O God, shatter their teeth in their mouth;
Break out the fangs of the young lions, O LORD.
7 Let them flow away like water that runs off;
When he aims his arrows, let them be as headless shafts.
8 Let them be as a snail which melts away as it goes along,
Like the miscarriages of a woman which never see the sun.
9 Before your pots can feel the fire of thorns
He will sweep them away with a whirlwind, the green and the burning alike.

10 The righteous will rejoice when he sees the vengeance;
He will wash his feet in the blood of the wicked.
11 And men will say, “Surely there is a reward for the righteous;
Surely there is a God who judges on earth!”  Psalm 58:6-11.

“7 A thousand may fall at your side
And ten thousand at your right hand,
But it shall not approach you.
8 You will only look on with your eyes
And see the recompense of the wicked.
9 For you have made the LORD, my refuge,
Even the Most High, your dwelling place.”  Psalm 91:7-9.

“My God in His lovingkindness will meet me;
God will let me look triumphantly upon my foes.”  Psalm 59:10.

“2 A jealous and avenging God is the LORD;
The LORD is avenging and wrathful.
The LORD takes vengeance on His adversaries,
And He reserves wrath for His enemies.
3 The LORD is slow to anger and great in power,
And the LORD will by no means leave the guilty unpunished.
In whirlwind and storm is His way,
And clouds are the dust beneath His feet.
4 He rebukes the sea and makes it dry;
He dries up all the rivers.
Bashan and Carmel wither;
The blossoms of Lebanon wither.
5 Mountains quake because of Him
And the hills dissolve;
Indeed the earth is upheaved by His presence,
The world and all the inhabitants in it.
6 Who can stand before His indignation?
Who can endure the burning of His anger?
His wrath is poured out like fire
And the rocks are broken up by Him.”  Nahum 1:2-6.

—————————

“3 Fire goes before Him
And burns up His adversaries round about.
4 His lightnings lit up the world;
The earth saw and trembled.
5 The mountains melted like wax at the presence of the LORD,
At the presence of the Lord of the whole earth.”  Psalm 97:3-5.

“But I will warn you whom to fear:  fear the One who, after He has killed, has authority to cast into hell;  yes, I tell you, fear Him!”  Luke 12:5.

And yet, how many so foolishly treat the LORD without respect, even with contempt!  They rebel against Him.

But, “The LORD is avenging and wrathful.
The LORD takes vengeance on His adversaries,
And He reserves wrath for His enemies.
… the LORD will by no means leave the guilty unpunished.”  Verses 2-3.

“2 The kings of the earth take their stand
And the rulers take counsel together
Against the LORD and against His Anointed, saying,
3 “Let us tear their fetters apart
And cast away their cords from us!”

4 He who sits in the heavens laughs,
The Lord scoffs at them.
5 Then He will speak to them in His anger
And terrify them in His fury, saying,
6 “But as for Me, I have installed My King
Upon Zion, My holy mountain.”  Psalm 2:2-6.

“10 Now therefore, O kings, show discernment;
Take warning, O judges of the earth.
11 Worship the LORD with reverence
And rejoice with trembling.
12 Do homage to the Son, that He not become angry, and you perish in the way,
For His wrath may soon be kindled.
How blessed are all who take refuge in Him!”  Psalm 2:10-12.

Today’s devotion comes from Micah chapter 7.  Here is a link to this chapter – https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Micah+7&version=NASB

I quote only the following verses.

“18 Who is a God like You, who pardons iniquity
And passes over the rebellious act of the remnant of His possession?
He does not retain His anger forever,
Because He delights in unchanging love.
19 He will again have compassion on us;
He will tread our iniquities under foot.
Yes, You will cast all their sins
Into the depths of the sea.
20 You will give truth to Jacob
And unchanging love to Abraham,
Which You swore to our forefathers
From the days of old.”  Micah 7:18-19.

——————–

The theme of today’s devotion is God’s “unchanging love” that we see twice in the above quote.

Indeed, who is like our God Who even delights in His “unchanging love”?!

Not the god of other doctrine who only reacts to man and changes his love in granting it or withholding it based on whether or not man is worthy to receive it.

But, the God of Reformed Doctrine initiates His love for those whom He elects for salvation, not based on whether or not man is worthy to receive it, because no man is worthy to receive it, but rather based on His own purpose.  “For He says to Moses, “I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion.”  So then it does not depend on the man who wills or the man who runs, but on God who has mercy.”  Romans 9:15-16.  “… so that God’s purpose according to His choice would stand, not because of works but because of Him who calls, it was said to her, “The older will serve the younger.”  Just as it is written, “Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated.”  Romans 9:11-13.

“Yet on your fathers did the LORD set His affection to love them, and He chose their descendants after them, even you above all peoples, as it is this day.”  Deuteronomy 10:15.

And for God’s elect whom He loves, God does not change His love because man sins.

“For I, the LORD, do not change;  therefore you, O sons of Jacob, are not consumed.'”  Malachi 3:6.

And for God’s elect whom He loves, God does everything that they need for their salvation.

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we would be holy and blameless before Him.  In love He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, which He freely bestowed on us in the Beloved.  In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace which He lavished on us.  …”  Ephesians 1:3-8.

“But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the ages to come He might show the surpassing riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.”  Ephesians 2:4-7.

“And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.  For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren;  and these whom He predestined, He also called;  and these whom He called, He also justified;  and these whom He justified, He also glorified.”  Romans 8:28-30.

Today’s devotion comes from Micah chapter 6.  Here is a link to this chapter – https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Micah+6&version=NASB

I quote only the following verses.

“Hear now what the LORD is saying,
“Arise, plead your case before the mountains,
And let the hills hear your voice.
2 “Listen, you mountains, to the indictment of the LORD,
And you enduring foundations of the earth,
Because the LORD has a case against His people;
Even with Israel He will dispute.
3 “My people, what have I done to you,
And how have I wearied you?  Answer Me.
4 “Indeed, I brought you up from the land of Egypt
And ransomed you from the house of slavery,
And I sent before you Moses, Aaron and Miriam.
5 “My people, remember now
What Balak king of Moab counseled
And what Balaam son of Beor answered him,
And from Shittim to Gilgal,
So that you might know the righteous acts of the LORD.”

6 With what shall I come to the LORD
And bow myself before the God on high?
Shall I come to Him with burnt offerings,
With yearling calves?
7 Does the LORD take delight in thousands of rams,
In ten thousand rivers of oil?
Shall I present my firstborn for my rebellious acts,
The fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?
8 He has told you, O man, what is good;
And what does the LORD require of you
But to do justice, to love kindness,
And to walk humbly with your God?”  Micah 6:1-8.

———————-

In today’s chapter, the LORD justifies His indictment and punishment of Israel.

“Listen, you mountains, to the indictment of the LORD,
And you enduring foundations of the earth,
Because the LORD has a case against His people;
Even with Israel He will dispute.”  Verse 2.

Despite all the good that the LORD did for Israel, Israel acted wickedly.

The LORD did not require that Israel do many complex things for Him. “Does the LORD take delight in thousands of rams, In ten thousand rivers of oil? …” Verse 7.

Rather, the LORD required a few simple things, namely “to do justice, to love kindness, And to walk humbly with your God”.  Verse 8.

These were not burdensome things to do, but they were good, simple, decent, and reasonable things to do that the LORD had every right to expect Israel to do in any event, but especially considering all the goodness shown to Israel.

“Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.  For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”  Matthew 11:29-30.

“But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh.  For the flesh sets its desire against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh;  for these are in opposition to one another, so that you may not do the things that you please.  But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the Law.  …  But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control;  against such things there is no law.”  Galatians 5:16-18 and 22-23.

Today’s devotion comes from Micah chapter 5.  Here is a link to this chapter – https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Micah+5&version=NASB

I quote only the following verses.

“2 “But as for you, Bethlehem Ephrathah,
Too little to be among the clans of Judah,
From you One will go forth for Me to be ruler in Israel.
His goings forth are from long ago,
From the days of eternity.”
3 Therefore He will give them up until the time
When she who is in labor has borne a child.
Then the remainder of His brethren
Will return to the sons of Israel.
4 And He will arise and shepherd His flock
In the strength of the LORD,
In the majesty of the name of the LORD His God.
And they will remain,
Because at that time He will be great
To the ends of the earth.
5 This One will be our peace.
When the Assyrian invades our land,
When he tramples on our citadels,
Then we will raise against him
Seven shepherds and eight leaders of men.
6 They will shepherd the land of Assyria with the sword,
The land of Nimrod at its entrances;
And He will deliver us from the Assyrian
When he attacks our land
And when he tramples our territory.”  Micah 5:2-6.

————————–

Verses 2-6 contain a prophecy of the coming of a Savior from Bethlehem.  Jesus Christ is His name Who was born in Bethlehem and Who would be “ruler in Israel” and Who would “shepherd His flock In the strength of the LORD”.

He would also defend His people.  “This One will be our peace.”  Verses 5-6.

“Why are the nations in an uproar
And the peoples devising a vain thing?
2 The kings of the earth take their stand
And the rulers take counsel together
Against the LORD and against His Anointed, saying,
3 “Let us tear their fetters apart
And cast away their cords from us!”

4 He who sits in the heavens laughs,
The Lord scoffs at them.
5 Then He will speak to them in His anger
And terrify them in His fury, saying,
6 “But as for Me, I have installed My King
Upon Zion, My holy mountain.”  Psalm 2:1-6.

Q. 45.  How doth Christ execute the office of a king?

A.  Christ executeth the office of a king, in calling out of the world a people to himself, and giving them officers, laws, and censures, by which he visibly governs them;  in bestowing saving grace upon his elect, rewarding their obedience, and correcting them for their sins, preserving and supporting them under all their temptations and sufferings, restraining and overcoming all their enemies, and powerfully ordering all things for his own glory, and their good;  and also in taking vengeance on the rest, who know not God, and obey not the gospel.”  Westminster Larger Catechism.

“6 For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us;
And the government will rest on His shoulders;
And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Eternal Father, Prince of Peace.
7 There will be no end to the increase of His government or of peace,
On the throne of David and over his kingdom,
To establish it and to uphold it with justice and righteousness
From then on and forevermore.
The zeal of the Lord of hosts will accomplish this.”  Isaiah 9:6-7.

Today’s devotion comes from Micah chapter 4.  Here is a link to this chapter – https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Micah+4&version=NASB

I quote only the following verses.

“And it will come about in the last days
That the mountain of the house of the LORD
Will be established as the chief of the mountains.
It will be raised above the hills,
And the peoples will stream to it.
2 Many nations will come and say,
“Come and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD
And to the house of the God of Jacob,
That He may teach us about His ways
And that we may walk in His paths.”
For from Zion will go forth the law,
Even the word of the LORD from Jerusalem.
3 And He will judge between many peoples
And render decisions for mighty, distant nations.
Then they will hammer their swords into plowshares
And their spears into pruning hooks;
Nation will not lift up sword against nation,
And never again will they train for war.
4 Each of them will sit under his vine
And under his fig tree,
With no one to make them afraid,
For the mouth of the LORD of hosts has spoken.”  Micah 4:1-4.

———————–

We read similar Scripture in Isaiah 2:1-4.

There is one type of fulfillment when the remnant of Judah was rescued by God and returned home from their exile and captivity in Babylon.

“10 “Writhe and labor to give birth,
Daughter of Zion,
Like a woman in childbirth;
For now you will go out of the city,
Dwell in the field,
And go to Babylon.
There you will be rescued;
There the LORD will redeem you
From the hand of your enemies.”  Verse 10.

But, there is another type of fulfillment, a much broader and much richer and final fulfillment, that all of God’s people will experience in heaven.

“Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth;  for the first heaven and the first earth passed away, and there is no longer any sea.  And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, made ready as a bride adorned for her husband.  And I heard a loud voice from the throne, saying, “Behold, the tabernacle of God is among men, and He will dwell among them, and they shall be His people, and God Himself will be among them, and He will wipe away every tear from their eyes;  and there will no longer be any death;  there will no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain;  the first things have passed away.”  Revelation 21:1-4.

For our citizenship is in heaven, from which also we eagerly wait for a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ;  who will transform the body of our humble state into conformity with the body of His glory, by the exertion of the power that He has even to subject all things to Himself.”  Philippians 3:20-21.

“For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us.  For the anxious longing of the creation waits eagerly for the revealing of the sons of God.  For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of Him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself also will be set free from its slavery to corruption into the freedom of the glory of the children of God.  For we know that the whole creation groans and suffers the pains of childbirth together until now.  And not only this, but also we ourselves, having the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our body.  For in hope we have been saved, but hope that is seen is not hope;  for who hopes for what he already sees?  But if we hope for what we do not see, with perseverance we wait eagerly for it.”  Romans 8:18-25.

Posted by: Bill Hornbeck | February 6, 2018

“Hear now, … rulers … Is it not for you to know justice?”

Today’s devotion comes from Micah chapter 3.  Here is a link to this chapter – https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Micah+3&version=NASB

I quote only the following verses.

“And I said,

Hear now, heads of Jacob
And rulers of the house of Israel.
Is it not for you to know justice?

9 Now hear this, heads of the house of Jacob
And rulers of the house of Israel,
Who abhor justice
And twist everything that is straight,
10 Who build Zion with bloodshed
And Jerusalem with violent injustice.
11 Her leaders pronounce judgment for a bribe,
Her priests instruct for a price
And her prophets divine for money.
Yet they lean on the LORD saying,
“Is not the LORD in our midst?
Calamity will not come upon us.”
12 Therefore, on account of you
Zion will be plowed as a field,
Jerusalem will become a heap of ruins,
And the mountain of the temple will become high places of a forest.”  Micah 3:1 and 9-12.

———————-

“Pay attention to Me, O My people,
And give ear to Me, O My nation;
For a law will go forth from Me,
And I will set My justice for a light of the peoples.”  Isaiah 51:4.

Justice is based on God’s law, and a summary of God’s law as it relates to man’s relationship to man is contained in the following commandments.

“13 “You shall not murder.

14 “You shall not commit adultery.

15 “You shall not steal.

16 “You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.

17 “You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife or his male servant or his female servant or his ox or his donkey or anything that belongs to your neighbor.” Exodus 20:13-17.

A fundamental principle in the administration of justice is to be impartial.

“You shall not show partiality in judgment;  you shall hear the small and the great alike.  You shall not fear man, for the judgment is God’s. …”  Deuteronomy 1:17.

“You shall not distort justice;  you shall not be partial, and you shall not take a bribe, for a bribe blinds the eyes of the wise and perverts the words of the righteous.  Justice, and only justice, you shall pursue, that you may live and possess the land which the Lord your God is giving you.”  Deuteronomy 16:19-20.

Rulers should not be partial in judgment to the rich, powerful, or popular.  But, rulers should also not even be partial to the poor:  “nor shall you be partial to a poor man in his dispute.”  Exodus 23:3.

But, the biggest tendency and danger is to be partial to the rich, powerful, and popular, and so much more is written in Scripture about justice protecting the poor.

“6 “You shall not pervert the justice due to your needy brother in his dispute.  7 Keep far from a false charge, and do not kill the innocent or the righteous, for I will not acquit the guilty.

8 “You shall not take a bribe, for a bribe blinds the clear-sighted and subverts the cause of the just.

9 “You shall not oppress a stranger, since you yourselves know the feelings of a stranger, for you also were strangers in the land of Egypt.”  Exodus 23:6-9.

“God takes His stand in His own congregation;
He judges in the midst of the rulers.
2 How long will you judge unjustly
And show partiality to the wicked?  Selah.
3 Vindicate the weak and fatherless;
Do justice to the afflicted and destitute.
4 Rescue the weak and needy;
Deliver them out of the hand of the wicked.”  Psalm 82:1-4.

Today’s devotion comes from Micah chapter 2.  Here is a link to this chapter – https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Micah+2&version=NASB

I quote only the following verses.

“Woe to those who scheme iniquity,
Who work out evil on their beds!
When morning comes, they do it,
For it is in the power of their hands.
2 They covet fields and then seize them,
And houses, and take them away.
They rob a man and his house,
A man and his inheritance.

3 Therefore thus says the LORD,

“Behold, I am planning against this family a calamity
From which you cannot remove your necks;
And you will not walk haughtily,
For it will be an evil time.

8 “Recently My people have arisen as an enemy—
You strip the robe off the garment
From unsuspecting passers-by,
From those returned from war.
9 “The women of My people you evict,
Each one from her pleasant house.
From her children you take My splendor forever.

12 “I will surely assemble all of you, Jacob,
I will surely gather the remnant of Israel.
I will put them together like sheep in the fold;
Like a flock in the midst of its pasture
They will be noisy with men.
13 “The breaker goes up before them;
They break out, pass through the gate and go out by it.
So their king goes on before them,
And the LORD at their head.”  Micah 2:1-3 and 8-9 and 12-13.

————————————-

Although there are those who do evil as stated in verses 1-2 and 8-9, the LORD will punish them as stated in verse 3, and the LORD will gather and protect His elect, “the remnant of Israel”, as stated in verses 12-13.

The image of the LORD’s care for them is that of a shepherd who gathers, protects, and provides for his sheep.  And, the LORD will lead them.

“I will surely assemble all of you, Jacob,
I will surely gather the remnant of Israel.
I will put them together like sheep in the fold;
Like a flock in the midst of its pasture …”  Verse 12.

“… So their king goes on before them,
And the LORD at their head.”  Verse 13.

Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ is our Good Shepherd Who said:  “I am the good shepherd, and I know My own and My own know Me, even as the Father knows Me and I know the Father;  and I lay down My life for the sheep.  I have other sheep, which are not of this fold;  I must bring them also, and they will hear My voice;  and they will become one flock with one shepherd.”  John 10:14-16.

“The LORD is my shepherd,
I shall not want.
2 He makes me lie down in green pastures;
He leads me beside quiet waters.
3 He restores my soul;
He guides me in the paths of righteousness
For His name’s sake.

4 Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I fear no evil, for You are with me;
Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.
5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies;
You have anointed my head with oil;
My cup overflows.
6 Surely goodness and lovingkindness will follow me all the days of my life,
And I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever.”  Psalm chapter 23.

Today’s devotion comes from Micah chapter 1.  Here is a link to this chapter – https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Micah+1&version=NASB

I quote only the following verses.

“The word of the LORD which came to Micah of Moresheth in the days of Jotham, Ahaz and Hezekiah, kings of Judah, which he saw concerning Samaria and Jerusalem.

2 Hear, O peoples, all of you;
Listen, O earth and all it contains,
And let the Lord God be a witness against you,
The Lord from His holy temple.
3 For behold, the Lord is coming forth from His place.
He will come down and tread on the high places of the earth.
4 The mountains will melt under Him
And the valleys will be split,
Like wax before the fire,
Like water poured down a steep place.
5 All this is for the rebellion of Jacob
And for the sins of the house of Israel.
What is the rebellion of Jacob?
Is it not Samaria?
What is the high place of Judah?
Is it not Jerusalem?
6 For I will make Samaria a heap of ruins in the open country,
Planting places for a vineyard.
I will pour her stones down into the valley
And will lay bare her foundations.
7 All of her idols will be smashed,
All of her earnings will be burned with fire
And all of her images I will make desolate,
For she collected them from a harlot’s earnings,
And to the earnings of a harlot they will return.”

8 Because of this I must lament and wail,
I must go barefoot and naked;
I must make a lament like the jackals
And a mourning like the ostriches.
9 For her wound is incurable,
For it has come to Judah;
It has reached the gate of my people,
Even to Jerusalem.”  Micah 1:1-9.

————–

The LORD’s judgment and punishment, the melting of the mountains in verse 4, the shame on those who serve idols in 7, and the overall sovereignty of the LORD remind us of Psalm chapter 97.

But, in sharp contrast to Micah chapter 1 which is sorrowful and focuses on the lament of Micah for Israel and Judah who will be destroyed, Psalm chapter 97 is joyful and focuses on the righteous there and everywhere whom the LORD preserves and their attitude to the LORD’s judgments.

“The LORD reigns, let the earth rejoice;
Let the many islands be glad.
2 Clouds and thick darkness surround Him;
Righteousness and justice are the foundation of His throne.
3 Fire goes before Him
And burns up His adversaries round about.
4 His lightnings lit up the world;
The earth saw and trembled.
5 The mountains melted like wax at the presence of the LORD,
At the presence of the Lord of the whole earth.
6 The heavens declare His righteousness,
And all the peoples have seen His glory.

7 Let all those be ashamed who serve graven images,
Who boast themselves of idols;
Worship Him, all you gods.
8 Zion heard this and was glad,
And the daughters of Judah have rejoiced
Because of Your judgments, O LORD.
9 For You are the LORD Most High over all the earth;
You are exalted far above all gods.

10 Hate evil, you who love the LORD,
Who preserves the souls of His godly ones;
He delivers them from the hand of the wicked.
11 Light is sown like seed for the righteous
And gladness for the upright in heart.
12 Be glad in the LORD, you righteous ones,
And give thanks to His holy name.”  Psalm chapter 97.

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