The Old Testament is filled with prophetic passages in which God is declaring judgement upon His people. Their waywardness has pressed His patience and His holiness commands a response. Every time I read these foreboding passages, I’m reminded of how life is always best when lived in obedience to God–especially as one of His children.
We have such a passage in Micah 5. In fact, the chapters and verses the precede this give a very dark picture of Israel’s future. Chapter 5:1 states:
Marshal your troops now, city of troops,
for a siege is laid against us.
They will strike Israel’s ruler
on the cheek with a rod.
With that final warning, the motif totally changes. Suddenly, we see hope, grace, providence, and God’s amazing plan expressed.
2 “But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah,
though you are small among the clanst of Judah,
out of you will come for me
one who will be ruler over Israel,
whose origins are from of old,
from ancient times.”
3 Therefore Israel will be abandoned
until the time when she who is in labor bears a son,
and the rest of his brothers return
to join the Israelites.
4 He will stand and shepherd his flock
in the strength of the Lord,
in the majesty of the name of the Lord his God.
And they will live securely, for then his greatness
will reach to the ends of the earth.
5 And he will be our peace
Here, in the midst of darkness and a foreboding future, God brings light and hope and peace. The messiah is promised DESPITE their waywardness. In the depth of Israel’s sin, God assures the wayward nation that He will STILL provide a redeemer. No matter how dark things have become, God assures His people that the Light of the World will still be sent. In the midst of chaos and despair, “He will be our peace.”
Nothing has changed with God. No matter what life is like for you, no matter how far you have wandered away, when life feels out of control and hopeless, He declares to us again, “He (Jesus) will be our peace.”
Don’t miss “Peace is Here” this Sunday. Invite everyone you can! It’s going to be an AWESOME day!