Micah 3 – Israel’s Sins Denounced & Execution by Assumption

Finger Pointing UpAfter this chapter let’s look at…

Micah 3
Israel’s Sins Denounced

1 And I said, Hear, I pray you, O heads of Jacob, and ye princes of the house of Israel; Is it not for you to know judgment?

1 The Assyrian Empire
The Assyrian Empire during Micah’s time.

2 Who hate the good, and love the evil; who pluck off their skin from off them, and their flesh from off their bones;

3:2-3 – “Pluck of their skin…as flesh within the caldron” – a series of figures of speech describing the cruel way the leaders treat the people.  This is some of the harshest language in the whole prophetic corpus.  Yet, things that the Assyrians in Nineveh did.

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.

4 Then shall they cry unto the LORD, but he will not hear them: he will even hide his face from them at that time, as they have behaved themselves ill in their doings.

2“He will not hear them” see Isa 59:1-2.

“Hide his face” – disobedience leads to separation from God.

5  Thus saith the LORD concerning the prophets that make my people err, that bite with their teeth, and cry, Peace; and he that putteth not into their mouths, they even prepare war against him.

“Cry, Peace” – the false prophets predicted peace for Judah while Micah predicted destruction and captivity.  Perhaps the best example of this is Jer 26, where the true prophets, Jerusalem and Urijah, are persecuted for not preaching peace.

6 Therefore night shall be unto you that ye shall not have a vision; and it shall be dark unto you, that ye shall not divine; and the sun shall go down over the prophets, and the day shall be dark over them.

3 This image shows the archaeological
This image shows the archaeological site at Jerusalem’s Mt. Zion, beneath the city’s (Turkish) wall. The site reveals many layers of the city’s cultural history, including a first-century mansion, which was then in Jerusalem’s elite district.

7 Then shall the seers be ashamed, and the diviners confounded: yea, they shall all cover their lips; for there is no answer of God.

8 But truly I am full of power by the spirit of the LORD, and of judgment, and of might, to declare unto Jacob his transgression, and to Israel his sin.

One of the chief purposes of Micah was to declare to Judah its sin.

“Full of power by the spirit” – the prophets were Spirit-filled messengers in contrast with “a man walking in the spirit and falsehood,” (2:11, here “spirit” suggests “breath”).  The false prophets were full of hot air.

9 Hear this, I pray you, ye heads of the house of Jacob, and princes of the house of Israel, that abhor judgment, and pervert all equity.

10 They build up Zion with blood, and Jerusalem with iniquity.

11 The heads thereof judge for reward, and the priests thereof teach for hire, and the prophets thereof divine for money: yet will they lean upon the LORD, and say, Is not the LORD among us? none evil can come upon us.

4 1“For money” – or “for a bribe.”

12 Therefore shall Zion for your sake be plowed as a field, and Jerusalem shall become heaps, and the mountain of the house as the high places of the forest.

The destruction of Jerusalem occurred in 586 B.C.  This verse was quoted a century later in Jer 26:18.  Jer 26:19 indicates that Micah’s preaching may have been instrumental in the revival under King Hezekiah.

Execution by Assumption

Macedonian general Parmenio served as patron and protector of young Alexander, whose father was assassinated when he was 20 years old. Alexander himself was at risk of assassination, but Parmenio sided with him and had the culprits seized and executed.

5 The Battle of Issus
The Battle of Issus
The Battle of Issus occurred in southern Anatolia, in November 333 BC. The invading Macedonian troops, led by Alexander the Great, defeated an army led by Darius III of Achaemenid Persia in the second great battle of Alexander’s conquest of Asia.

More than 30 years older than Alexander, Parmenio counseled the young king to marry and produce an heir before he waged war on the Persians. It was good advice, because Alexander later died without a Macedonian heir, which set the stage for a bloody power struggle between his generals that fractured his empire.

Alexander, however, was too impatient for glory to delay his campaign against the Persians for domestic or dynastic reasons.

Parmenio was Alexander’s second in command. In battle, Parmenio led the cavalry on one wing and played a supporting role while Alexander commanded the other wing and mounted heroic charges.

Alexander would not tolerate a rival, and Parmenio’s position as the conqueror’s right-hand man placed him at risk. After the Persians’ defeat, Parmenio’s son Philotas was accused on slender evidence of conspiring against Alexander and was executed.

Parmenio, the man who had been like a second father to the young king and shielded him, was judged guilty by association, and Alexander had him put to death.

6 Philotas was the eldest son of Parmenion
Philotas was the eldest son of Parmenion, Alexander’s most experienced and talented general. When Alexander became king of Macedonia with Parmenion’s support, he and his relations were rewarded with offices and commissions.

Alexander’s Empire
After His Death

Alexander’s empire fractured after he died. But the Macedonian dynasties established by his generals Ptolemy in Egypt and Seleucus elsewhere in the Near East had a profound impact on that region by infusing it with Greek culture and Greek colonists.

Among the many Middle Eastern t cities founded by Macedonians or Greeks was Alexandria in Egypt, commissioned by Ptolemy as his capital and dedicated to Alexander.  That port’s great library and museum embodied the cosmopolitan spirit of the larger Greek world that Alexander brought into being.

The third dynasty emerged under Antigonus when Alexander’s generals divided his realm did not last long.  Greeks never fully accepted imperial rule by Macedonians and tried to break free, only to fall subject to a greater power when Romans took control of their country in the 2nd century B.C.

By embracing the concept of citizenship applying it to other Italians, Romans created with military prowess put Rome almost in a class by itself—with the notable great rival, Carthage.


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