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Hope: A Path To Fulfillment     Micah 4:1-4; 5:1-4     May 24, 2009


Introduction

       This lesson contains prophecy already fulfilled and some yet to come. Micah predicted the fall of the puppet King Zedekiah, and the Bethlehem birth of Christ. But also predicts events yet to happen during the millennium. The question is often asked how could prophecy about the millennial reign of Christ benefit the people of Micah’s day. I think it would bless those people in a similar manner as it blesses us. It presents a well founded hope based on many scriptures. The Christian’s ultimate expectation can be called, Hope: A Path To Fulfillment.

 

 

1.   The . . Guidance For Hope: A Path To Fulfillment. 4:1-2

       A.   Establishing . . The Guidance To Hope. 4:1

1 In the last days the mountain of the Lord's house will be established at the top of the mountains and

              will be raised above the hills. Peoples will stream to it,

 

       B.   Encountering . . The Guidance To Hope. 4:2

2 and many nations will come and say, "Come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house

              of the God of Jacob. He will teach us about His ways so we may walk in His paths." For instruction

              will go out of Zion and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.


       Micah speaks of the guidance to hope that is established in the last days. People will come from all over the world to encounter these blessings in Jerusalem. Jewish people returning to Israel ever since 1948 gives a tinge of resemblance to what this text predicts. Someday the Lord will gather all of His children to the Holy City!


 

2.   The . . Gratitude For Hope: A Path To Fulfillment. 4:3-4

       A.   Gratitude For The . . Peace Included In This Hope. 4:3

3 He will settle disputes among many peoples and provide arbitration for strong nations that are far away. They will beat their swords into plows, and their spears into pruning knives. Nation will not take

              up the sword against nation, and they will never again train for war.

 

       B.   Gratitude For The . . Promise Included In This Hope. 4:4

4 But each man will sit under his grapevine and under his fig tree with no one to frighten him. For the mouth of the Lord of Hosts has promised this HCSB


       Every healthy person desires peace. It has a quality about it that enables people to relax and enjoy life.

The cares of everyday life fade in the serenity of peace. This text tells us the Lord of Host promises this peace. It is a peace unlike the peace the world gives. It is a peace that passes understanding. It can only be explained in the context of what the Lord gives. All who participate will be grateful to the Lord for His promise of peace and its reality.


 

3.   The . . Gravity Of The Situation For Hope: A Path To Fulfillment. 5 :1-2

       A.   The Grave Situation Calls for The Judgement Of . . Jerusalem. 5:1

              1 Now daughter who is under attack, you slash yourself in grief; a siege is set against us! They are

              striking the judge of Israel on the cheek with a rod.

 

       B.   The Grave Situation Calls for The Bethlehem Birth Of . . Jesus. 5:2

2 Bethlehem Ephrathah, you are small among the clans of Judah; One will come from you to be ruler over Israel for Me. His origin is from antiquity, from eternity.


       Many commentators say this passage speaks to the seizure of King Zedekiah. It represents a grave situation in the life of the city of Jerusalem. The text next speaks of the birth of Jesus in Bethlehem. It seems a little strange to bounce around like this but in the midst of a seizure of your king what would give hope and peace?

The answer is the Prince Of Peace whose origin comes from eternity. It is interesting to know when the wise men came to see the baby Jesus Herod gathered all the chief priests and scribes and they knew this passage in our text referred to Christ’s birth.


 

4.   The . . Greatness Of The Situation For Hope: A Path To Fulfillment. 5 :3-4

       A.   The Greatness Of The Situation Calls for The . . Return To Jerusalem. 5:3

3 Therefore, He will abandon them until the time when she who is in labor has given birth; then the rest of His brothers will return to the people of Israel.

 

       B.   The Greatness Of The Situation Calls for The . . Reign Of Jesus. 5:4

4 He will stand and shepherd them in the strength of Yahweh, in the majestic name of Yahweh His God. They will live securely, for then His greatness will extend to the ends of the earth. HCSB


       Most of the commentators I respect believe these verses refer to the present time when the Gentiles receive the gospel and most of Israel rejects it. However in the future Israel will come back to the Lord. The word “return” does not seem to apply to the Gentiles but could easily refer to the return of Israel. In verse four the millennial reign of Christ is spoken of and, Hope: A Path To Fulfillment, is finally realized. Amen? Amen!