New International Version - UK

Micah 5

A promised ruler from Bethlehem

1[a]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.

‘But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah,
    though you are small among the clans[b] 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.’

Therefore Israel will be abandoned
    until the time when she who is in labour bears a son,
and the rest of his brothers return
    to join the Israelites.

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.

And he will be our peace
    when the Assyrians invade our land
    and march through our fortresses.
We will raise against them seven shepherds,
    even eight commanders,
who will rule[c] the land of Assyria with the sword,
    the land of Nimrod with drawn sword.[d]
He will deliver us from the Assyrians
    when they invade our land
    and march across our borders.

The remnant of Jacob will be
    in the midst of many peoples
like dew from the Lord,
    like showers on the grass,
which do not wait for anyone
    or depend on man.
The remnant of Jacob will be among the nations,
    in the midst of many peoples,
like a lion among the beasts of the forest,
    like a young lion among flocks of sheep,
which mauls and mangles as it goes,
    and no one can rescue.
Your hand will be lifted up in triumph over your enemies,
    and all your foes will be destroyed.

10 ‘In that day,’ declares the Lord,

‘I will destroy your horses from among you
    and demolish your chariots.
11 I will destroy the cities of your land
    and tear down all your strongholds.
12 I will destroy your witchcraft
    and you will no longer cast spells.
13 I will destroy your idols
    and your sacred stones from among you;
you will no longer bow down
    to the work of your hands.
14 I will uproot from among you your Asherah poles[e]
    when I demolish your cities.
15 I will take vengeance in anger and wrath
    on the nations that have not obeyed me.’


  1. Micah 5:1 In Hebrew texts 5:1 is numbered 4:14, and 5:2-15 is numbered 5:1-14.
  2. Micah 5:2 Or rulers
  3. Micah 5:6 Or crush
  4. Micah 5:6 Or Nimrod in its gates
  5. Micah 5:14 That is, wooden symbols of the goddess Asherah

New International Reader's Version

Micah 5

A Promised Ruler Will Come From Bethlehem

1Jerusalem, you are being attacked.
    So bring your troops together.
Our enemies have surrounded us.
    They want to slap the face of Israel’s ruler.

The Lord says,

“Bethlehem Ephrathah, you might not be
    an important town in the nation of Judah.
But out of you will come for me
    a ruler over Israel.
His family line goes back
    to the early years of your nation.
It goes all the way back
    to days of long ago.”

The Lord will hand over his people to their enemies.
    That will last until the pregnant woman bears her promised son.
Then the rest of his relatives in Judah
    will return to their land.

That promised son will stand firm
    and be a shepherd for his flock.
The Lord will give him the strength to do it.
    The Lord his God will give him
    the authority to rule.
His people will live safely.
    His greatness will reach
    from one end of the earth to the other.
And he will be our peace
    when the Assyrians attack our land.
    They will march through our forts.
But we will raise up against them many shepherds.
    We’ll send out against them
    as many commanders as we need to.
They will use their swords to rule over Assyria.
    They’ll rule the land of Nimrod
    with swords that are ready to strike.
The Assyrians will march across our borders
    and attack our land.
    But the promised ruler will save us from them.

Jacob’s people who are still left alive
    will be scattered among many nations.
They will be like dew the Lord has sent.
    Dew doesn’t depend on any human being.
They will be like rain that falls on the grass.
    Rain doesn’t wait for someone to give it orders.
So Jacob’s people will be scattered
    among many nations.
They will be like a lion
    among the animals in the forest.
They’ll be like a young lion
    among flocks of sheep.
Lions attack and tear apart their prey as they move along.
    No one can keep them
    from killing what they want.
Lord, your power will win the battle
    over your enemies.
    All of them will be destroyed.

10 “At that time I will destroy
    your war horses,” announces the Lord.
    “I will smash your chariots.
11 I will destroy the cities in your land.
    I will tear down all your forts.
12 I will destroy your worship of evil powers.
    You will no longer be able
    to put a spell on anyone.
13 I will destroy the statues of your gods.
    I will take your sacred stones away from you.
You will no longer bow down
    to the gods your hands have made.
14 I will pull down the poles you used
    to worship the female god named Asherah.
    That will happen when I completely destroy your cities.
15 I will pay back the nations
    that have not obeyed me.
    I will direct my anger against them.”