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Sunday, February 17 2013

Micah: Swords Into Plowshares

The name "Micah" is derived from the Hebrew name pronounced mee-caw, which is an abbreviation of mee-caw-yaw, from which the English name Michael originated. Micah is equivalent to someone named Michael being called "Mike." The full name in the original Hebrew means who is like the LORD.

Micah was a prophet of the LORD to the southern kingdom (i.e. in Judea) of Judah, while the northern kingdom (i.e. in Samaria and Galilee) of Israel still existed (see Israel In History and Prophecy: Israel and Judah), although in Micah's time the northern kingdom was nearing its end, and seemingly oblivious to it. Passing nations almost always do so relatively slowly, so that most of the people regard each step downward as "normal" (the Western democracies have been in such a moral and economic descent for decades). Micah lived in a different era than the later prophets to Judah; the people of Judah heeded the LORD's warnings from Micah, while they ignored later warnings through prophets such as Jeremiah (see the list of studies below).

The people of Judah, in the time of Jeremiah (over a century after Micah), even used the example of Micah as a warning when their people were abusing Jeremiah: i.e. "This man [i.e. Jeremiah] is not worthy to die: for he hath spoken to us in the name of the LORD our God" in contrast to "Micah the Morasthite prophesied in the days of Hezekiah king of Judah" and "Did Hezekiah king of Judah and all Judah put him [i.e. Micah] at all to death? did he not fear the LORD, and besought the LORD, and the LORD repented him of the evil which he had pronounced against them?":

Swords Into Plowshares

"26:16 Then said the princes and all the people unto the priests and to the prophets; This man is not worthy to die: for he hath spoken to us in the name of the LORD our God.

26:17 Then rose up certain of the elders of the land, and spake to all the assembly of the people, saying, 26:18 Micah the Morasthite prophesied in the days of Hezekiah king of Judah, and spake to all the people of Judah, saying, Thus saith the LORD of hosts; Zion shall be plowed like a field, and Jerusalem shall become heaps, and the mountain of the house as the high places of a forest.

26:19 Did Hezekiah king of Judah and all Judah put him at all to death? did he not fear the LORD, and besought the LORD, and the LORD repented him of the evil which he had pronounced against them? Thus might we procure great evil against our souls." (Jeremiah 26:16-19 KJV)

Micah's prophecy of warning was nevertheless to both Israel and Judah, to "Samaria and Jerusalem" (Samaria was the capital city of Israel and Jerusalem was the capital city of Judah). Judah, at that time, heeded the warning of the LORD's prophets, while Israel did not. It's the reason that Judah lasted about 120 years longer than Israel.

"1:1 The word of the LORD that came to Micah the Morasthite in the days of Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah, kings of Judah [to understand Micah's time of prophecy, see Kings of Israel and Judah to find those kings of Judah in the history of the northern and southern kingdoms], which he saw concerning Samaria and Jerusalem.

1:2 Hear, all ye people; hearken, O earth, and all that therein is: and let the Lord GOD be witness against you, the Lord from his holy temple.

1:3 For, behold, the LORD cometh forth out of his place, and will come down, and tread upon the high places of the earth. 1:4 And the mountains shall be molten under him, and the valleys shall be cleft, as wax before the fire, and as the waters that are poured down a steep place. 1:5 For the transgression of Jacob is all this, and for the sins of the house of Israel. What is the transgression of Jacob? is it not Samaria? and what are the high places of Judah? are they not Jerusalem?" (Micah 1:1-5 KJV)

The governments of both Israel and Judah in the time of Micah had become "law of the jungle" thug-ship, not leadership (again, very much like the supposed Western democracies of today). True leaders are so because people "vote" (i.e. freely choose) to follow them, based on proclaimed principles that are lived by, while harlot politicians (see Forward, Not Froward) depend solely upon fear, deception and promises of anything to buy votes, to hypocritically misrule over their nation. So it was in the north and south at that time.

"2:1 Woe to them that devise iniquity, and work evil upon their beds! when the morning is light, they practice it, because it is in the power of their hand. 2:2 And they covet fields, and take them by violence; and houses, and take them away: so they oppress a man and his house, even a man and his heritage." (Micah 2:1-2 KJV)

"3:2 Who hate the good, and love the evil; who pluck off their skin from off them, and their flesh from off their bones; 3:3 Who also eat the flesh of my people, and flay their skin from off them; and they break their bones, and chop them in pieces, as for the pot, and as flesh within the caldron." (Micah 3:2-3 KJV)

In contrast to the endless stream of human war criminals and misfits over the ages who have claimed to "lead the world," Micah prophesied about the coming King who will rule all the world in truth and peace (see The Kingdom Of The LORD God). The famous "they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up a sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more" was prophesied by Micah.

"4:1 But in the last days it shall come to pass, that the mountain of the house of the LORD shall be established in the top of the mountains, and it shall be exalted above the hills; and people shall flow unto it. 4:2 And many nations shall come, and say, Come, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, and to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for the law shall go forth of Zion, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem. 4:3 And he shall judge among many people, and rebuke strong nations afar off; and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up a sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more." (Micah 4:1-3 KJV)

Micah prophesied the birth of the Messiah in Bethlehem, a prophecy of Micah that was quoted in the New Testament (see also Bethlehem In History And Prophecy).

"5:2 But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting." (Micah 5:2 KJV)

"2:5 And they said unto him, In Bethlehem of Judaea: for thus it is written by the prophet, 2:6 And thou Bethlehem, in the land of Juda, art not the least among the princes of Juda: for out of thee shall come a Governor, that shall rule my people Israel." (Matthew 2:5-6 KJV)

Studies For The Book Of Micah

2 Chronicles: Judah From Solomon To Babylon
1 Chronicles: From Adam To King David
2 Kings: The Rise And Fall Of Israel and Judah
1 Kings: From Empire To Divided Kingdom
2 Samuel: The Kingdom Of David
1 Samuel: From Judges To Kings
Amos: A Shepherd Of Tekoa
Joel: The Day Of The LORD
Hosea: A Wife And Children Of Whoredoms
Lamentations: The Desolation Of The Rebel Kingdom
Jeremiah: The Prophet's Conception
Isaiah: Visions Of The Messiah

Fact Finder: How is the Messiah going to bring about "swords into plowshares"?
See What Happens After The Messiah Returns?


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This Day In History, February 17

364: Roman Emperor Jovian died; he reigned only eight months (see also A History Of Jerusalem: Pompey And The Caesars).

1370: The Battle of Rudau during the "Crusades" (see A History Of Jerusalem: Constantine and Muhammad).

1461: During the Wars of the Roses, the Yorkists were defeated by the Lancastrians at the Battle of St. Albans.

1600: Giordano Bruno, scientist and mathematician whose theories were ahead of his time, was burned as a "heretic" in Rome during the Inquisition.

1759: General Wolfe sailed from Britain to capture Quebec.

1772: The first partition of Poland, by Russia and Prussia (Prussia is in Germany), also later by Austria.

1776: The first volume of Gibbon's "Decline and Fall of The Roman Empire" was published.

1864: A Confederate hand-propelled submarine, armed with a ram torpedo, sunk a Union ship off the coast of Charleston, South Carolina. It is considered the first successful attack by a submarine.

1875: Friedrich Argelander died at age 76. The Prussian (Prussia is in Germany) astronomer established the study of variable stars as an independent branch of astronomy. He is renowned for his catalog which lists the positions and magnitudes of 324,188 stars - the Bonner Durchmusterung was the result of 25 years of observational work.

1909: Apache chief Geronimo died at age 80.

1919: Sir Wilfred Laurier died. He was the first French-Canadian to become Prime Minister of Canada (1896-1911).

1934: Albert I died at age 59. As Belgian king from 1909 to 1934, he commanded Belgian army during the First World War. He refused the German ultimatum of August 2 1914, demanding free passage of German troops across Belgium; the German invasion followed 2 days later. Albert was the son of Philip count of Flanders and Princess Marie of Hohenzollern. He married Elisabeth, the daughter of the duke of Bavaria.

1955: Britain announced that it had hydrogen bombs.

1957: The Suez Canal reopened.

1969: Russian-born, U.S.-raised, Golda Meir was sworn in as Israel's first female Prime Minister.

1972: The British House of Commons voted to join the European Community.

1996: World champion Garry Kasparov beat the "Deep Blue" supercomputer in a chess match.

1998: Voyager 1 became the most distant human-made object in space as it passed the distance set by the previous record holder Pioneer 10. On that day it was 6.5 billion miles from earth, traveling at 39,000 mph. It had been launched just over 20 years previous, on September 5 1977.

1998: Ernst Juenger died at age 102. The German writer was involved in the July 20 1944 plot to kill Adolf Hitler (see Presidential Quotes On War, Terrorism, Religion).





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