1The word of the LORD that came to Micah the Morasthite in the days of Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah, kings of Judah, which he saw concerning Samaria and Jerusalem. 2Hear, all ye people; hearken, O earth, and all that therein is: and let the Lord GOD be witness against you, the Lord from his holy temple.1.2 all ye…: Heb. ye people, all of them1.2 all that…: Heb. the fulness thereof 3For, behold, the LORD cometh forth out of his place, and will come down, and tread upon the high places of the earth. 4And the mountains shall be molten under him, and the valleys shall be cleft, as wax before the fire, and as the waters that are poured down a steep place.1.4 a steep…: Heb. a descent 5For the transgression of Jacob is all this, and for the sins of the house of Israel. What is the transgression of Jacob? is it not Samaria? and what are the high places of Judah? are they not Jerusalem? 6Therefore I will make Samaria as an heap of the field, and as plantings of a vineyard: and I will pour down the stones thereof into the valley, and I will discover the foundations thereof. 7And all the graven images thereof shall be beaten to pieces, and all the hires thereof shall be burned with the fire, and all the idols thereof will I lay desolate: for she gathered it of the hire of an harlot, and they shall return to the hire of an harlot.
8Therefore I will wail and howl, I will go stripped and naked: I will make a wailing like the dragons, and mourning as the owls.1.8 owls: Heb. daughters of the owl 9For her wound is incurable; for it is come unto Judah; he is come unto the gate of my people, even to Jerusalem.1.9 her…: or, she is grievously sick of her wounds
10¶ Declare ye it not at Gath, weep ye not at all: in the house of Aphrah roll thyself in the dust.1.10 Aphrah: that is, Dust 11Pass ye away, thou inhabitant of Saphir, having thy shame naked: the inhabitant of Zaanan came not forth in the mourning of Beth-ezel; he shall receive of you his standing.1.11 thou…: or, thou that dwellest fairly1.11 inhabitant: Heb. inhabitress1.11 Zaanan: or, The country of flocks1.11 Beth-ezel: or, A place near 12For the inhabitant of Maroth waited carefully for good: but evil came down from the LORD unto the gate of Jerusalem.1.12 inhabitant: Heb. inhabitress1.12 waited…: or, was grieved 13O thou inhabitant of Lachish, bind the chariot to the swift beast: she is the beginning of the sin to the daughter of Zion: for the transgressions of Israel were found in thee.1.13 inhabitant: Heb. inhabitress 14Therefore shalt thou give presents to Moresheth-gath: the houses of Achzib shall be a lie to the kings of Israel.1.14 to…: or, for Moresheth-gath1.14 Achzib: that is, A lie 15Yet will I bring an heir unto thee, O inhabitant of Mareshah: he shall come unto Adullam the glory of Israel.1.15 inhabitant: Heb. inhabitress1.15 he…: or, the glory of Israel shall, etc 16Make thee bald, and poll thee for thy delicate children; enlarge thy baldness as the eagle; for they are gone into captivity from thee.
1A message from the Lord came to Micah. He was from the town of Moresheth. The message came while Jotham, Ahaz and Hezekiah were kings of Judah. This is the vision Micah saw concerning Samaria and Jerusalem. Here is what he said.
2Listen to me, all you nations!
Earth and everyone who lives in it, pay attention!
The Lord and King will be a witness against you.
The Lord will speak from his holy temple in heaven.
The Lord Will Judge Samaria and Jerusalem
3The Lord is about to come down
from his home in heaven.
He rules over even the highest places on earth.
4The mountains will melt under him
like wax near a fire.
The valleys will be broken apart
by water rushing down a slope.
5All this will happen because
Jacob’s people have done what is wrong.
The people of Israel
have committed many sins.
Who is to blame
for the wrong things Jacob has done?
Who is to blame for the high places
where Judah’s people worship other gods?
6So the Lord says,
“I will turn Samaria into a pile of trash.
It will become a place for planting vineyards.
I will dump its stones down into the valley.
And I will destroy it
down to its very foundations.
7All the statues of Samaria’s gods
will be broken to pieces.
All the gifts its people gave to temple prostitutes
will be burned with fire.
I will destroy all the statues of its gods.
Samaria collected gifts that were paid to temple prostitutes.
So the Assyrians will use the gifts
to pay their own temple prostitutes.”
Micah Weeps Over His People
8I will weep and mourn because Samaria will be destroyed.
I’ll walk around barefoot and naked.
I’ll bark like a wild dog.
I’ll hoot like an owl.
9Samaria’s plague can’t be healed.
The plague has spread to Judah.
It has spread right up to the gate of my people.
It has spread to Jerusalem itself.
10Don’t tell the people of Gath about it.
Don’t let them see you weep.
People in Beth Ophrah, roll in the dust.
11You who live in the town of Shaphir,
leave naked and in shame.
Those who live in Zaanan
won’t come out to help you.
The people in Beth Ezel will mourn.
They won’t be able to help keep you safe any longer.
12Those who live in Maroth will groan with pain
as they wait for help.
That’s because the Lord will bring trouble on them.
It will reach the very gate of Jerusalem.
13You who live in Lachish,
get your fast horses ready to pull their chariots.
You trust in military power.
Lachish was where sin began
for the people of Zion.
The wrong things Israel did
were also done by you.
14People of Judah, you might as well say goodbye
to Moresheth near Gath.
The town of Akzib won’t give any help
to the kings of Israel.
15An enemy will attack
you who live in Mareshah.
Israel’s nobles will have to run away
and hide in the cave of Adullam.
16The children you enjoy so much
will be taken away as prisoners.
So shave your heads and mourn.
Make them as bare as the head of a vulture.