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Daily Devotional

June 12

THOU, BETHLEHEM EPHRATAH, OUT OF THEE SHALL HE COME FORTH THAT IS TO BE RULER IN ISRAEL

by Henry T. Vriesen

Micah 1–7

In the days of Jotham, Ahaz and Hezekiah, kings of Judah, when the great prophet Isaiah called the people of Judah to repentance, another man heard the call of God and became his prophet. It was Micah. He is called the Morasthite, because he was from Moresheth, a city in Judah. “Hear, all ye people,” so his message began, “hearken, O earth, and all that therein is: and let the Lord God be witness against you, the Lord from his holy temple. For behold, the Lord cometh forth out of his place, and will come down, and tread upon the high places of the earth … For the transgression of Jacob is all this, and for the sins of the house of Israel … fear 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. They build up Zion with blood, and Jerusalem with iniquity … 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.”

“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 into it. And many nations shall come and say, Come, 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 … 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 … And he shall stand and feed in the strength of the Lord, in the majesty of the name of the Lord his God; and they shall abide: for now shall he be great unto the ends of the earth. And this man shall be the peace.”

“Wherewith shall I come before the Lord, and bow myself before the high God? … He hath showed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the Lord require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God? … Therefore I will look unto the Lord; I will wait for the God of my salvation: my God will hear me. Rejoice not against me, O mine enemy: when I fall, I shall arise; when I sit in darkness, the Lord shall be a light unto me … Who is a God like unto thee, that pardoneth iniquity, and passeth by the transgression of the remnant of his heritage? he retaineth not his anger forever, because he delighteth in mercy. He will turn again, he will: have compassion upon us; he will subdue our iniquities; and thou wilt cast all their sins into the depths of the sea.”

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