Repentance is also a major theme of Micah (3:8). He pronounces “woes” upon the people so that they might turn from their sin and return to God. In that kind of preaching, we find that God cares about how we live, and he cares about the damaging effects sin has on people. We’re told what God requires of us: “to do justice, to love kindness and to walk humbly with our God” (6:8). But such repentance also carries the promise of forgiveness. Micah promises that God will pardon our iniquity and pass over transgression and have compassion on us (7:18–19). We end this book with hope that we serve a God who is like none other (7:18).
While life on earth will always have injustice and sin, Micah gives us hope that a day is coming when “the mountain of the house of the LORD shall be established as the highest of the mountains, and it shall be lifted up above the hills; and peoples shall flow to it, and many nations shall come, and say: ‘Come let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob, that he may teach us his ways and that we may walk in his paths’” (4:1–2). That great day will not be accomplished politically or militarily, but rather through Christ: “He will stand and Shepherd his flock in the strength of the LORD his God, and they shall dwell secure…and shall be their peace (5:4–5).”
Our congregations will find hope for all of life as we shepherd them through the book of Micah.
3. Micah’s fruitfulness grows our confidence in the power of God’s Word.
Unlike the book of Jonah, we will not read in Micah’s book about masses of people repenting. It’s tempting to think that this nobody had no impact. Such is not the case. We learn from another prophet, 100 years after Micah, that his preaching was greatly used by God.
The prophet Jeremiah mentions the preaching ministry of Micah. It’s in Jeremiah 26, where the people want to kill the weeping prophet. But Jeremiah’s life is saved because one elder remembers hearing of Micah’s preaching ministry (Jeremiah 26:18). Not only was the prophet’s life saved, but we learn that during Micah’s day, his preaching led King Hezekiah to revival. It states, “Did he (King Hezekiah) not fear the Lord and entreat the favor of the Lord, and did not the Lord relent of the disaster that he had pronounced against them” (Jeremiah 26:19)? In two verses, we learn that Micah’s preaching was used by God to bring both revival during Micah’s day and pardon during Jeremiah’s day. If we’re ever tempted to doubt the power of God’s Word, let’s remember this moment in biblical history.
We probably don’t assume our sermons will be used by God to bring a national revival—or to save a man’s life long after we’re dead. Maybe our sermons will never have that kind of impact, but one thing is for certain: God’s Word will! Just as sure as God used Micah’s words centuries ago, he promises to surely use them now. So you can’t go wrong preaching this book.
Philipps, Richard D. Jonah and Micah. (New Jersey: P&R), 2010. An excellent resource that helps the reader think about the man and his mission. I love this whole series: Reformed Expository Commentary. All the titles are great, but Phillips does a good job engaging the reader, and helping us to see the times that Micah lived.
Waltke, Bruce. Micah. (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans), 2007. One of the best exegetical resources on the book of Micah. This commentary is referenced quite often in other resources, so going to this scholar will prove to be helpful to your preaching.
Prior, David. The Message of Joel, Micah, and Habakkuk (The Bible Speaks Today, 1999). This commentary series as a whole is a great tool for pastors. They help me think about the main point of the book, and see the book in light of the overarching narrative of Scripture.
This article originally appeared here.