5/04/20 – Micah 4:4-7
This passage today continues to describe what to expect in the millennial reign of Christ. Note that there will still be people (or nations) who worship false gods, but not for ever and ever as is said of the worship of “the Lord our God” (Vs 2 below). Therefore it cannot be talking about heaven in eternity.
Micah 4:4 – But they shall sit every man under his vine and under his fig tree; and none shall make [them] afraid: for the mouth of the Lord of hosts hath spoken [it].
shall sit – to dwell; remain; sit; sit down; abide; stay.
every man – or “everyone” or “whosoever”. Here the best word would be “everyone”.
shall make (them) afraid – cause them to tremble; drive them (away) in terror.
the mouth – or “commandment”
the Lord of hosts – Yᵉhovah tsaba’
hath spoken (it) – or “promised (it)”
This verse suggests ownership of your property; that is, free of the oppression of foreign ownership or stolen ownership by the rulers and leaders of Israel (Judah) as per Micah 2:1-2 and emphasised in Micah 3:1-3. The common citizen of Judah was oppressed by his country’s government and then, because of the judgment brought upon those leaders, the common citizen continued to suffer deprivation of what should have been his. The captivity didn’t really change much for most citizens; it merely changed the people who persecuted them from their own leaders to the leaders of a foreign country.
Having your own vine and your own fig tree spoke of freedom from oppression. Rab–shakeh (“chief of the princes” or “royal cup-bearer” or “vizier” of Sennacherib of Assyria) “threatened” a besieged Jerusalem with the promise that if they surrendered, the citizens would be permitted to return to his own vine and his own fig tree and his own water supply, thus promising to not enslave them or their country.
2 Kings 18:31 – Hearken not to Hezekiah: for thus saith the king of Assyria, Make [an agreement] with me by a present, and come out to me, and [then] eat ye every man of his own vine, and every one of his fig tree, and drink ye every one the waters of his cistern:
In Solomon’s time everyone of Judah and Israel (all 12 tribes) dwelt freely and sovereignly on his own land without oppression.
1 Kings 4:25 – And Judah and Israel dwelt safely, every man under his vine and under his fig tree, from Dan even to Beer–sheba, all the days of Solomon.
Having your own vine and fig tree also spoke of prosperity and material possessions.
none shall make them afraid – They will not fear any enemy breaking in on their property at any time. Their possessions will be secure. Note that in the last days they will also be living without fear when suddenly destruction will come upon them.
1 Thessalonians 5:2-4 – 2For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night. 3For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape. 4But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief.
for the mouth of the Lord of hosts hath spoken – There is no greater authority than God to guarantee a promise.
Hebrews 6:13 – For when God made promise to Abraham, because he could swear by no greater, he sware by himself
If God promises, then it will happen!
Numbers 23:19 – God [is] not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do [it]? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good? (Of course, this was spoken by the false prophet, Balaam, yet Balaam was not able to speak anything against God’s people and therefore could only speak the truth.)
God, here, has promised (by His own word) that in the millennial reign of Christ, every person will be entitled to his own possessions (his vine and his fig tree), his own special inheritance, and none may be afraid that they would ever have anyone try to take that away from them. This verse is a statement of the safety and security that every person who trusts in God will have.
Isaiah 58:14 – Then shalt thou delight thyself in the Lord; and I will cause thee to ride upon the high places of the earth, and feed thee with the heritage of Jacob thy father: for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken [it].
Micah 4:5 – For all people (peoples; nations) will walk every one in the name of his god, and we will walk in the name of the Lord our God for ever and ever.
people – or “nation” A masculine plural noun (‘am), thus more than one people or more than one nation, so can mean peoples or nations in general, thus “all peoples” or “all nations”. This term can be used for Israel but here it appears to be used of all peoples, all nations of the world.
will walk – to go; walk; come; depart; proceed; move; go away; to live and die; figuratively manner of life (figuratively). It has to do with your philosophy of life, including your beliefs. (Note that “-do” on the end of a martial arts program denotes a way of living, a way of life. That is why such martial arts are spiritually dangerous.
Thus “all peoples will walk”
every one – same word used for “every man” in Vs 4 above. Could also be translated as “each one”, thus “each one in the name of his god”.
god – ‘elohiym (masculine plural, thus “gods”)
For all the Gentile nations will walk in the name of (will live according to the requirements of) their gods. Their lives will be governed by the gods they worship. But we (Micah is now talking of his nation, Judah or Israel) will walk according to the requirements of the Lord our God for ever and ever (without end).
Those who worship false gods will be ashamed and confounded; this particularly includes those who make their idols. It is Israel who will have everlasting salvation in the Lord. There is only one God (God Himself) who can promise this, and none else.
Isaiah 45:16-18 – 16They shall be ashamed, and also confounded, all of them: they shall go to confusion together [that are] makers of idols. 17[But] Israel shall be saved in the Lord with an everlasting salvation: ye shall not be ashamed nor confounded world without end. 18For thus saith the Lord that created the heavens; God himself that formed the earth and made it; he hath established it, he created it not in vain, he formed it to be inhabited: I [am] the Lord; and [there is] none else.
There is only one God who can do what He promises to do; all other gods are unable to do anything.
Psalm 115:1-8 – 1Not unto us, O Lord, not unto us, but unto thy name give glory, for thy mercy, [and] for thy truth’s sake. 2Wherefore should the heathen say, Where [is] now their God? 3But our God [is] in the heavens: he hath done whatsoever he hath pleased.4Their idols [are] silver and gold, the work of men’s hands. 5They have mouths, but they speak not: eyes have they, but they see not: 6They have ears, but they hear not: noses have they, but they smell not: 7They have hands, but they handle not: feet have they, but they walk not: neither speak they through their throat. 8They that make them are like unto them; [so is] every one that trusteth in them.
This is a comparison between false gods and the one true God. Only those who walk in the name of the Lord God will do it for ever and ever. All other gods will fail but only the Lord God will never fail.
Micah 4:6 – In that day, saith the Lord, will I assemble her that halteth, and I will gather her that is driven out, and her that I have afflicted;
In that day – This refers to “the last days” as mentioned in Micah 4:1. This is the millennial reign of Christ, not to be confused with eternity in heaven.
will assemble – gather; gather in; assemble; collect; bring up the rear; gather and take away; remove; withdraw. Used for “will assemble” in Micah 2:12 and translated “are gathered” in Micah 4:11.
will gather – to gather; collect; assemble. Used for “will gather” in Micah 2:12.
Carefully compare Micah 4:6-7 with Micah 2:12-13, noting the underlined terms.
Micah 2:12-13 – 12I will surely assemble, O Jacob, all of thee; I will surely gather the remnant of Israel; I will put them together as the sheep of Bozrah, as the flock in the midst of their fold: they shall make great noise by reason of [the multitude of] men. 13The breaker is come up before them: they have broken up, and have passed through the gate, and are gone out by it: and their king shall pass before them, and the Lord on the head of them.
Micah 4:6-7 – 6In that day, saith the Lord, will I assemble her that halteth, and I will gather her that is driven out, and her that I have afflicted; 7And I will make her that halted a remnant, and her that was cast far off a strong nation: and the Lord shall reign over them in mount Zion from henceforth, even for ever.
These two words (“will assemble” and “will gather”) are identical to these same words in Micah 2:12, and used in the same order. (In fact, in Micah 2:12 these two terms are doubled apparently for extra emphasis.) It will be no coincidence that they are both used again here. A major difference between the 2 verses is that Micah 2:12 does not state “In that day” or anything similar. This does suggest that the 2 verses may be to do with the same thing, yet probably on 2 different yet related occasions. Note also that “remnant” in Vs 7 below is the same “remnant” used in Micah 2:12. The context appears to be the same, yet applied to 2 different circumstances: firstly (Micah 2:12-13) the remnant going off to captivity, and secondly (Micah 4:6-7) the remnant returning from their captivity. In the first case, Israel has rejected the authority of their God, and in the second case Israel has now affirmed the authority of their God. It almost seems like 2 sides of the same coin: one side rebellious, the other side obedient!
halteth – limp; are lame. Those who have been handicapped (spiritually) by their rebellion against God. Note that in Deuteronomy 28 it gives the choice between obeying God and receiving blessing, or disobeying God and receiving cursing. In Micah’s day Israel had rebelled so much that she was receiving cursing rather than blessing. This severely impeded their ability to live a good life. Effectively they had been made spiritually lame because they had departed from God’s good blessing. This led to their captivity, after which they still did not heed God’s warnings, and thus Israel was mostly blinded, put aside from being God’s priesthood which was then handed over to the Gentiles (Romans 11). It would only be after the completion of the task given to the Gentiles that Israel would finally have her spiritual eyes opened again and she would see (Romans 11:22-27). In that day (during the great tribulation) God would call His people Israel back to Himself and once again give to them His calling to serve Him. This time they will heed God’s voice and the remnant will finally be gathered together at the end of the 7-year tribulation to go into the millennial reign of Christ their Messiah.
driven out – to be impelled; to be thrust out; be banished; cast out; driven away; thrust aside. Those who were driven out of their land and taken into captivity to Babylon will one day be finally gathered together again for the 1000-year reign of Christ.
have afflicted – to do injury to; to hurt; to do evil or wickedly; do mischief; to break or shatter. This would mean those whom God has deliberately punished for their rebellion. Israel was afflicted for her rebellion against God and eventually dispersed among all the Gentile nations (the diaspora – the Great Dispersion). Finally, after the tribulation 7-years they will have been purified by the extreme persecution before being gathered together in Jerusalem to await God’s redemption during and after Armageddon.
Israel has failed in her initial requirement to serve God as a nation of priests. However, in the millennium, they will then serve God with a willing heart, finally being God’s people as He is their God.
Ezekiel 37:21-28 – 21And say unto them, Thus saith the Lord God; Behold, I will take the children of Israel from among the heathen, whither they be gone, and will gather them on every side, and bring them into their own land: 22And I will make them one nation in the land upon the mountains of Israel; and one king shall be king to them all: and they shall be no more two nations, neither shall they be divided into two kingdoms any more at all: 23Neither shall they defile themselves any more with their idols, nor with their detestable things, nor with any of their transgressions: but I will save them out of all their dwellingplaces, wherein they have sinned, and will cleanse them: so shall they be my people, and I will be their God. 24And David my servant [shall be] king over them; and they all shall have one shepherd: they shall also walk in my judgments, and observe my statutes, and do them. 25And they shall dwell in the land that I have given unto Jacob my servant, wherein your fathers have dwelt; and they shall dwell therein, [even] they, and their children, and their children’s children for ever: and my servant David [shall be] their prince for ever. 26Moreover I will make a covenant of peace with them; it shall be an everlasting covenant with them: and I will place them, and multiply them, and will set my sanctuary in the midst of them for evermore. 27My tabernacle also shall be with them: yea, I will be their God, and they shall be my people. 28And the heathen shall know that I the Lord do sanctify Israel, when my sanctuary shall be in the midst of them for evermore.
In those days God will gather again His people whom He had afflicted for their rebellion.
Zephaniah 3:18-20 – 18I will gather [them that are] sorrowful for the solemn assembly, [who] are of thee, [to whom] the reproach of it [was] a burden. 19Behold, at that time I will undo all that afflict thee: and I will save her that halteth, and gather her that was driven out; and I will get them praise and fame in every land where they have been put to shame. 20At that time will I bring you [again], even in the time that I gather you: for I will make you a name and a praise among all people of the earth, when I turn back your captivity before your eyes, saith the Lord.
Micah 4:7 – And I will make her that halted (limped) a remnant, and her that was cast far off a strong nation: and the Lord shall reign over them in mount Zion from henceforth, even for ever.
cast far off – to be removed far away; be removed far off.
remnant – rest; residue; remainder; remnant; what is left; descendants. Same word as used in Micah 2:12a – I will surely assemble, O Jacob, all of thee; I will surely gather the remnant of Israel;
strong – mighty; vast; numerous; strong (in number); numerous; countless. This has the idea of having such great numbers as to be seen as mighty.
nation – goy. Generally used of non-Jewish or Gentile nations.
In Micah 1:2 we had “people” (masculine plural, thus “peoples” or “nations”) – ‘am – nation; people; persons; countrymen; kinsmen; kindred. This can represent Israel, or nations in general, while the others are called Gentiles (who are usually named goy). ‘am is used also in Micah 1:9; 2:4; 2:8; 2:11; 3:3; 3:5; 4:1; 4:3. In most places here it should be seen as representing Israel or Judah but occasionally it can mean all nations in general without distinction.
Yet here it is goy, those who are generally not of Israel. Is this Israel this time, or is it the Gentiles who will be made a strong nation? It does appear that this strong nation is Israel, an Israel gathered from the ranks of the Gentiles perhaps.
And God shall reign over them (literally “shall be made King”) in Zion, from His city of Jerusalem (Micah 4:1-2).
Isaiah 24:21-23 – 21And it shall come to pass in that day, [that] the Lord shall punish the host of the high ones [that are] on high, and the kings of the earth upon the earth. 22And they shall be gathered together, [as] prisoners are gathered in the pit, and shall be shut up in the prison, and after many days shall they be visited. 23Then the moon shall be confounded, and the sun ashamed, when the Lord of hosts shall reign in mount Zion, and in Jerusalem, and before his ancients gloriously.
God will reclaim His people, His remnant whom He will redeem because they were those of Israel who called upon the name of the Lord to be saved.
Joel 2:31-32 – 31The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and the terrible day of the Lord come. 32And it shall come to pass, [that] whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be delivered: for in mount Zion and in Jerusalem shall be deliverance, as the Lord hath said, and in the remnant whom the Lord shall call.
And God will make her that was lame a remnant (to be redeemed) and her that was removed far off (rejected as My nation) shall become a strong nation again. God shall reign over them in Jerusalem from the start of the millennium and forevermore.
Sin created a barrier between God and man but Jesus overcame that barrier (the middle wall of partition) – note the temple veil split from top to bottom.
Ephesians 2:13-14 – 13But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ. 14For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition [between us];
Those who were made enemies by their sin have now been reconciled through the cross of Jesus.
Colossians 1:20-22 – 20And, having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, [I say], whether [they be] things in earth, or things in heaven. 21And you, that were sometime alienated and enemies in [your] mind by wicked works, yet now hath he reconciled 22In the body of his flesh through death, to present you holy and unblameable and unreproveable in his sight:
Calvinists are one group that denies Israel to come back as a nation in her own right. There are other splinter groups who do the same, such as British Israelites who teach that they are the ten lost tribes of Israel. This appears to have been first taught by a Huguenot (calvinist) magistrate named LeLayer (or LeLoyer) in his book “The Lost Ten Tribes Found” (or “The Ten Lost Tribes”?) published in 1590. Later, John Sadler (1615-1674), a British member of parliament, Neoplatonist, and private secretary to his good friend (and calvinist) Oliver Cromwell, took up LeLayer’s ideas. Subsequently he wrote “The Rights of the Kingdom” (published 1649). (He was also at one stage a member of Committee for Lunatics!) His book became the basis for founding documents for British Israelites.
In 1791, Richard Brothers took up these British Israelite views, producing his first British Israelist publication in 1794 in which he wrote: A REVEALED KNOWLEDGE OF THE PROPHECIES AND TIMES, Book the First, wrote [sic] under the direction of the LORD GOD and published by His Sacred Command, it being the first sign of Warning for the benefit of All Nations; Containing with other great and remarkable things not revealed to any other Person on Earth, the Restoration of the Hebrews to Jerusalem by the year of 1798 under their revealed Prince and Prophet (i.e., Richard Brothers). London, Printed in the year of Christ 1794.
Brothers claimed to hear the voice of an attending angel which proclaimed to him the fall of Babylon the Great, which was in fact London. Apparently upon Brothers's plea for mercy, God decided to spare London for a time and the destruction was halted. Around this time, Brothers was also expectant of a heavenly lady who would descend from the clouds showering him with money, love and happiness. In February 1792 Brothers declared himself a healer and claimed he could restore sight to the blind. He drew large crowds, but not due to his healing ability as much as his small gifts of money to those he prayed for. (Wikipedia)
Thus Britain was claimed to be Israel in exile. However, not to be outdone, Edward Hine then in 1871 published a document “Identification of the British Nation with Lost Israel”. In it he promoted America as also part of the 10 lost tribes of Israel. George Gawler, a prominent British-Israelite, promoted Jewish settlement in Palestine in 1849 and his son published a blueprint for this settlement using funds from Edmund Rothschild. It was blow to this movement when the Balfour Declaration (1917) promised resettlement of Jews in Israel to the original Jews, not British Israelites.
British Israelism rebounded again in the 1960s when Herbert W Armstrong (Worldwide Church of God) promoted it vigorously. In 2009 his church changed its name to Grace Communion International. (Why grace? Isn’t that a calvinist term?)
The point of interest here is that all this was started by a calvinist Huguenot (LeLayer), and taken up by another calvinist (John Sadler). Between these two, the main thrust of British Israelitism was set in motion. And to what end? It appears that the main idea was to somehow prove that if Israel were to come back, it could only do so as part of the new Israel, Britain. Calvinism also generally claims that Israel can only return as part of the church, not in its own right. Coincidence? Not really.