June 03, 2021 – Thursday
Micah 6:8 NIV
8 He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.
Micah 6:8 NKJV
8 He has shown you, O man, what is good; And what does the Lord require of you But to do justly, To love mercy, And to walk humbly with your God?
This is a lovely verse and has been made into a song of praise and taught on in some depth by Pastor Chuck Smith for almost 35 minutes among others teaching on it as well. But as wonderful as this verse is, a question arises as to why is it there?
To know why it is there we could go back to verse one through seven, but will limit ourselves to verses six and seven as providing the answer to our question, With what shall I come before the Lord and bow down before the exalted God? Shall I come before him with burnt offerings, with calves a year old? Will the Lord be pleased with thousands of rams, with ten thousand rivers of olive oil? Shall I offer my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul? The questions asked in verses six and seven are thought to be asked by the people of Israel in the voice of Micah in a self-righteous manner as if they had done all the sacrifices listed. And all those sacrifices should be enough in acknowledging their sin and payment for the sin in a manner acceptable to God.
But God is once again more concerned about the condition of their hearts as opposed to their sacrifices. For if we read the first five verses of this chapter it is clear the people have forgotten all God had done for them. Then the subsequent verses reveal they have been using dishonest scales, the rich have become violent, and the people liars who speak deceitfully. Their hearts are in trouble with God.
Thus, verse eight provides a path for them to follow so they and their hearts might once again be right with God, He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God. Boiling the requirements down we have a requirement to act justly and love mercy. And finally, to walk humbly with your God. The first is the most obvious for they would stop using dishonest scales, quit lying and being deceitful. The second is tougher as to love mercy would mean showing mercy to those in their lives and to look forward to showing mercy. Difficult for those who had become rich, self-centered and violent. A real change of heart is necessary here.
Then how about the last requirement, to walk humbly with your God? Even more difficult for the arrogant and prideful who took full credit for all they had achieved in life, never giving God one iota of real credit. They think and believe it has all been only their own effort. God fully intends to disabuse them of such a false notion as He states in the last part of verse 16, Therefore I will give you over to ruin and your people to derision; you will bear the scorn of the nations. He will let them find out just how poorly they do without the benefit of His blessings.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, I know all my achievements come through Your blessings and not by my effort alone. Help me to always be aware and never forget how necessary Your blessings are to my life.– In Jesus’ Name. Amen.