This is the 3rd article in a series called “The 68Mission.” The series examines the potential impact of Micah 6:8 on the church today. In “Part 1 – God’s Case Against His People,” I described how Micah 6 is presented as a covenant lawsuit that God is bringing against Israel in Micah’s day. In “Part 2 – The Nature of God’s Requirements,” I examined the three timeless commands God gives to all people: do justice, love steadfastly, and walk humbly with God.
How does Micah 6:8 relate to churches today?
An application of Micah 6:8 would have us live in three directions at once: toward God (though humility), toward one another (with steadfast love), and toward the world (with justice). We must always be mindful that God created us for relationships. In Genesis 1:26-27, we relate to God as our Creator, to each other as male and female, and to the world by dominion/management of it.
This is the 2nd article in a series called “The 68Mission.” The series examines the potential impact of Micah 6:8 on the church today. In “Part 1 – God’s Case Against His People,” I described how Micah 6 is presented as a covenant lawsuit that God brought against Israel in Micah’s day.
Micah 6:8 establishes God’s most fundamental and universal demands on humans. The requirements placed upon ancient Israel here are essentially the same requirements placed on us. These are not requests, and God has not changed his standards.
In a recent study of Micah 6:8, I came across a 27-year-old journal article (“An Expository Exegesis: Micah 6:6-8,” Faith and Mission Vol. 2, No. 2) written by Elmo Scoggin on the passage. This important verse is part of a larger context—a “covenant lawsuit.” God has brought a lawsuit against his people, and he plays four different roles as the case progresses: prosecuting attorney, bailiff, judge, and plaintiff. The list below is a very brief summary of the verses leading up to Micah 6:8.
- Micah 6:1 – The defendant, Israel, is called to the stand and challenged to speak up in self-defense.
- Micah 6:2 – The court issues various witnesses—the mountains and the foundations of the earth—to hear the Lord’s complaint.
- Micah 6:3 – With Israel on the stand, the Lord asks, “How have I made you too weary to serve me?”
- Micah 6:4-5 – Each year, Israel recited God’s deliverance of their lives at Passover. Now, the Lord uses the very same tactic and turns the tables on Israel. He recites their history himself. Scoggin writes, “Why, then, not return, repent, and serve God with joy? Surprise! Israel has become so insensitive to the deeper spiritual values that she now misses the point entirely… The glamor of formal, ritualistic religion has acted as a narcotic that has desensitized God’s people to the essence of true religion.”
Then we get to the heart of the matter.
When you find yourself in a position to make a difference, you have a choice to make.
In Esther 4, Mordecai encouraged Queen Esther, who was Jewish and his own cousin, to appeal to the Persian King Ahaseurus to spare the lives of the Jewish people. The Jews were threatened with extinction due to the hatred of one of the king’s officials, Haman. Only an edict from the king could stop the wicked plan from being executed.
Esther, however, was scared. If she entered the presence of the king without being invited—even though he was her own husband—she faced the possibility of being executed herself. Mordecai reminded her that because she was a Jew, she was also in danger of Haman’s wrath. And then he added these words of hope: “And who knows whether you have not attained royalty for such a time as this?” (Esther 4:14).
Esther was convinced. She now believed that the unseen Lord was quietly orchestrating the events in her life so that she could make a difference. Esther chose to act, and the Jewish people were saved.
There are two questions that deserve reflection today. The first is this: Where has God placed you to make a difference? In other words, define your sphere of influence. Who can you persuade, convince, or nudge? Whose life can you impact with your words or actions?
Once you can answer the first question, the second becomes clear: What choice will you make? What will you say that can encourage faith, give hope, or express love? What can you do that will change someone’s life?
Perhaps you have been placed where you are “for such a time as this.”
Do you have goals for yourself? Perhaps some of them are major goals, like writing a book or visiting a foreign land. God has a goal for your life as well. And His goal is ultimately more satisfying than ours.
In this final message from the series “Grasping the Good: Encouragement for Troubling Times,” Dr. David Rhoades explains how God’s goal intersect with your own to give you everything you need for life and godliness.
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Our viewpoint is focused on our own lives, but God sees throughout all generations. In this final message from the series “The Story of Ruth: Covenantal Love for Common People,” Dr. David Rhoades explores how the birth of a baby can change history.
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