Micah 7:1-20

Israel Is Corrupt

1  I feel so empty inside—
    like someone starving
        for grapes or figs,
     after the vines and trees
        have all been picked clean.
2 No one is loyal to God;
        no one does right.
    Everyone is brutal
    and eager to deceive
        everyone else.
3  People cooperate to commit crime.
    Judges and leaders demand bribes,
        and rulers cheat in court.
4 The most honest of them
        is worse than a thorn patch.

    Your doom has come!
    Lookouts sound the warning,
        and everyone panics.
5 Don’t trust anyone,
        not even your best friend,
    and be careful what you say
        to the one you love.

6 Sons refuse to respect
        their own fathers,
    daughters rebel against
        their own mothers,
    and daughters-in-law despise
        their mothers-in-law.
    Your family is now your enemy.
7  But I trust the Lord God
        to save me,
    and I will wait for him
        to answer my prayer.

The Nation Turns to God

8 My enemies, don’t be glad
        because of my troubles!
    I may have fallen,
        but I will get up;
    I may be sitting in the dark,
        but the Lord is my light.
9  I have sinned against the Lord.
    And so I must endure his anger,
        until he comes to my defense.
    But I know that I will see him
    making things right for me
        and leading me to the light.

10 You, my enemies, said,
        “The Lord God is helpless.”
    Now each of you
    will be disgraced
        and put to shame.
    I will see you trampled
        like mud in the street.

A Bright Future

11 Towns of Judah, the day is coming
     when your walls will be rebuilt,
          and your boundaries enlarged.
12 People will flock to you
          from Assyria and Egypt,
     from Babylonia
          and everywhere else.
13 Those nations will suffer disaster
          because of what they did.

Micah’s Prayer and the Lord’s Answer

14 Lead your people, Lord!
          Come and be our shepherd.
     Grasslands surround us,
          but we live in a forest.
     So lead us to Bashan and Gilead,
     and let us find pasture
          as we did long ago.

15 I, the Lord, will work miracles
     just as I did when I led you
          out of Egypt.
16 Nations will see this
     and be ashamed because
          of their helpless armies.
     They will be in shock,
          unable to speak or hear,
17 because of their fear of me,
          your Lord and God.
     Then they will come trembling,
     crawling out of their fortresses
          like insects or snakes,
          lapping up the dust.

No One Is Like God

The people said:
18 Our God, no one is like you.
     We are all that is left
          of your chosen people,
     and you freely forgive
          our sin and guilt.
     You don’t stay angry forever;
     you’re glad to have pity
19      and pleased to be merciful.
     You will trample on our sins
          and throw them in the sea.
20 You will keep your word
     and be faithful to Jacob
          and to Abraham,
     as you promised our ancestors
          many years ago.

The Contemporary English Version, c1995 by the American Bible Society.
Selected texts provided for use with the Hypertext Bible Commentary