Micah 6:6-8 “With what shall I come before the Lord, and bow myself before God on high? Shall I come before him with burnt offerings, with calves a year old? Will the Lord be pleased with thousands of rams, with ten thousands of rivers of oil? Shall I give my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?” He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?”
When Israel lost their vision of who God was. When they were divided into two kingdoms (about 750 BC), God sent Micah to speak the truth to a back-slidden nation. When Israel was relying on who they were and what they did for their relationship with God. Micah told them how God viewed their religious life. What Micah said still has great meaning for those who desire to know the Lord today.
First, Micah asks the hard question; “What offering cna I bring to worship God?” Today, like then, people want to appease God with financial giving, self-denial, religious activities, group affiliation, or how they dress. So, Micah asks questions to provoke thought: “Just what allows people to come to a holy God?”
It’s not sacrifices, the price of a person’s soul is greater than the death of an animal. And it’s not costly offerings, God is not concerned about the value of your gift, but how much it cost you. Once Jesus was watching the offering box as many wealthy people put in large amounts of money, making sure everyone knew how much they gave. But, when a poor widow put in two copper coins worth about a half a penny, Jesus said of her; (Luke 21:3) “...This poor widow has put in more than all the others.” She gave out of a desire to hear from God while the others gave out of their surplus.
Lesson for us; sacrifice or offering won’t help you know God. Micah wonders if perhaps giving his oldest child would appease God. Of course, that’s ridiculous, because that’s what the pagans did, offering their children to false gods.
But there is a Son who was sacrificed that can bring us to God. The only price that proved to be enough to purchase people from the sin that separates everyone from the living God. 2 Corinthians 5:21 says; For our sake he (God) made him to be sin who knew no sin (Jesus), so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
Micah, looking though time, knew there was one coming who would show just what “the LORD requires.” So, Jesus Christ became the justice, mercy and humility that bridges the gap to God. By faith in him and what he did, suddenly the only sacrifice that could remove our sin, gives us access to the living God. By faith in Jesus, and though God’s grace, you can be saved. Now empowered by the Holy Spirit we live out what the Lord requires, and that’s a life of justice, mercy, and walking in humility with God.
Pastor Rich Lammay of High Sierra Fellowship is a member of the Carson Valley Ministers’ Association.
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