Micah 5

1 Now you shall gather yourself in troops, daughter of troops. He has laid siege against us. They will strike the judge of Israel with a rod on the cheek. 2 But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, being small amongst the clans of Judah, out of you one will come out to me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings out are from of old, from ancient times. 3 Therefore he will abandon them until the time that she who is in labor gives birth. Then the rest of his brothers will return to the children of Israel. 4 He shall stand, and shall shepherd in the strength of the LORD, in the majesty of the name of the LORD his God: and they will live, for then he will be great to the ends of the earth. 5 He will be our peace when Assyria invades our land, and when he marches through our fortresses, then we will raise against him seven shepherds, and eight leaders of men. 6 They will rule the land of Assyria with the sword, and the land of Nimrod in its gates. He will deliver us from the Assyrian, when he invades our land, and when he marches within our border. 7 The remnant of Jacob will be amongst many peoples, like dew from the LORD, like showers on the grass, that don’t wait for man, nor wait for the sons of men. 8 The remnant of Jacob will be amongst the nations, amongst many peoples, like a lion amongst the animals of the forest, like a young lion amongst the flocks of sheep; who, if he goes through, treads down and tears in pieces, and there is no one to deliver. 9 Let your hand be lifted up above your adversaries, and let all of your enemies be cut off. 10 “It will happen in that day”, says the LORD, “that I will cut off your horses out from amongst you, and will destroy your chariots. 11 I will cut off the cities of your land, and will tear down all your strongholds. 12 I will destroy witchcraft from your hand; and you shall have no soothsayers. 13 I will cut off your engraved images and your pillars out from amongst you; and you shall no more worship the work of your hands. 14 I will uproot your Asherah poles out from amongst you; and I will destroy your cities. 15 I will execute vengeance in anger, and wrath on the nations that didn’t listen.”

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Questions about today’s reading? See if Matthew Henry can help.
Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary, 1706

Verses 1–6

Having showed how low the house of David would be brought, a prediction of the Messiah and his kingdom is added to encourage the faith of God’s people. His existence from eternity as God, and his office as Mediator, are noticed. Here is foretold that Bethlehem should be his birthplace. Hence it was universally known among the Jews, Mt 2:5. Christ’s government shall be very happy for his subjects; they shall be safe and easy. Under the shadow of protection from the Assyrians, is a promise of protection to the gospel church and all believers, from the designs and attempts of the powers of darkness. Christ is our Peace as a Priest, making atonement for sin, and reconciling us to God; and he is our Peace as a King, conquering our enemies: hence our souls may dwell at ease in him. Christ will find instruments to protect and deliver. Those that threaten ruin to the church of God, soon bring ruin on themselves. This may include the past powerful effects of the preached gospel, its future spread, and the ruin of all antichristian powers. This is, perhaps, the most important single prophecy in the Old Testament: it respects the personal character of the Messiah, and the discoveries of himself to the world. It distinguishes his human birth from his existing from eternity; it foretells the rejection of the Israelites and Jews for a season, their final restoration, and the universal peace to prevail through the whole earth in the latter days. In the mean time let us trust our Shepherd’s care and power. If he permits the assault of our enemies, he will supply helpers and assistance for us.

Verses 7–15

The remnant of Israel, converted to Christ in the primitive times, were among many nations as the drops of dew, and were made instruments in calling a large increase of spiritual worshippers. But to those who neglected or opposed this salvation, they would, as lions, cause terror, their doctrine condemning them. The Lord also declares that he would cause not only the reformation of the Jews, but the purification of the Christian church. In like manner shall we be assured of victory in our personal conflicts, as we simply depend upon the Lord our salvation, worship him, and serve him with diligence.

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