Birthday Suit Prophet

Mark Fackler

READ : Micah 1:8-16

“I will make lamentation like the jackals.” (v. 8)

Sports teams have names like Lions, Tigers, Bears, and Eagles. All these creatures are fast, strong, and appealing. Have you ever heard of a team called the Jackals or the Ostriches? Few noble qualities attend these critters. So when Micah identifies Israel with these beasts (v. 8) his message can’t be good.

What was that message? Assyria was coming, and none of Israel’s towns have any chance to survive. So Micah turned the meanings of their names into derisive lament. Shaphir, “beauty town,” will be humiliated. Zaanan, “go-forth city,” will be hemmed in. Bethezel, “sanctuary,” will not offer protection. Maroth, “conqueror,” will be whipped (vv. 11-12).

Micah’s message is sorrow for Israel’s sin and God’s sure-to-come judgment. Yet the people were so busy being busy and so delighted with urban pleasures they didn’t hear a word of it. We too are surrounded with distractions, pleasures, and entertainments. For us, the road back to God may not be the easy choice. Still, we must hear God’s plea to return, and race back to faith—before it’s too late.

PRAYER

Lord, I am coming home.