Better Days Ahead for Jerusalem
1 In the future the Lord’s Temple Mount will be the most important mountain of all;
it will be more prominent than other hills.
People will stream to it.
2 Many nations will come, saying,
“Come on! Let’s go up to the Lord’s mountain,
to the temple of Jacob’s God,
so he can teach us his commands
and we can live by his laws.”
For Zion will be the source of instruction;
the Lord’s teachings will proceed from Jerusalem.
3 He will arbitrate between many peoples
and settle disputes between many distant nations.
They will beat their swords into ploughshares,
and their spears into pruning hooks.
Nations will not use weapons against other nations,
and they will no longer train for war.
4 Each will sit under his own grapevine
or under his own fig tree without any fear.
The Lord who commands armies has decreed it.
5 Though all the nations follow their respective gods,
we will follow the Lord our God forever.
Restoration Will Follow Crisis
6 “In that day,” says the Lord, “I will gather the lame,
and assemble the outcasts whom I injured.
7 I will transform the lame into the nucleus of a new nation,
and those far off into a mighty nation.
The Lord will reign over them on Mount Zion,
from that day forward and for evermore.”
8 As for you, watchtower for the flock,
fortress of Daughter Zion –
your former dominion will be restored,
the sovereignty that belongs to Daughter Jerusalem.
9 Jerusalem, why are you now shouting so loudly?
Has your king disappeared?
Has your wise leader been destroyed?
Is this why pain grips you as if you were a woman in labour?
10 Twist and strain, Daughter Zion, as if you were in labour!
For you will leave the city
and live in the open field.
You will go to Babylon,
but there you will be rescued.
There the Lord will deliver you
from the power of your enemies.
11 Many nations have now assembled against you.
They say, “Jerusalem must be desecrated,
so we can gloat over Zion!”
12 But they do not know what the Lord is planning;
they do not understand his strategy.
He has gathered them like stalks of grain to be threshed at the threshing floor.
13 “Get up and thresh, Daughter Zion!
For I will give you iron horns;
I will give you bronze hooves,
and you will crush many nations.”
You will devote to the Lord the spoils you take from them,
and dedicate their wealth to the sovereign Ruler of the whole earth.
C H Spurgeon
Micah 4:1. But in the last days it shall come to pass, that the mountain of the house of the LORD shall be established in the top of the mountains, and it shall be exalted above the hills; and people shall flow unto it.
God’s cause and kingdom shall not be hidden away in a corner: “the mountain of the house of the Lord shall be established in the top of the mountains,” an Alp upon other Alps, higher than all the other hills. The day is coming when the kingdom of our Lord Jesus Christ shall be the most conspicuous thing in the whole world, “and people shall flow unto it.” The heathen, the people who knew nothing about it, shall flow to it like a great river.
Micah 4:2. And many nations shall come, and say, Come, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, and to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths:
That is the way the grace of God works in us; he teaches, and then we not only learn, but we obey.
Micah 4:2-3. For the law shall go forth of Zion, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem. And he shall judge among many people, and rebuke strong nations afar off;
The kingdom of Christ, the Son of David, shall attract people and nations that were far off from the holy city where he lived and died.
Micah 4:3. And they shall beat their swords into ploughshares, and their spears into pruning-hooks: nation shall not lift up a sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more.
They shall give up the study of the art of war. Their spirit shall be softened, in many cases renewed by grace and then they shall take to the useful arts; they shall not throw away their swords, but shall beat them into ploughshares, they shall not hurl their spears into the earth, but shall bend them into scythes or pruning-hooks. Oh, that the day were come when the wealth and ingenuity and power of nations were used in the pursuits of peace instead of in the arts of war! This is the tendency of the kingdom of Christ, for wherever he comes, he makes peace. Nothing is more opposed to the spirit of Christianity than war; and when men are Christians, not in name only, but in deed and in truth, wars must cease.
Micah 4:4. But they shall sit every man under his vine and under his fig tree: and none shall make them afraid: for the mouth of the LORD of hosts hath spoken it.
The best evidence that this will be the case is that the Lord of hosts, who has all power at his disposal, has said that it shall be so.
Micah 4:5. For all people will walk every one in the name of his god, and we will walk in the name of the LORD our God for ever and ever.
When we learn to know God in truth, we do not give him up, but we walk in his name for ever and ever. God’s covenant with us is an everlasting covenant, reaching beyond time, and enduring throughout eternity. Some nations have discarded their idol gods; but those who really know and love the Lord will walk in his name for ever and ever.
Micah 4:6. In that day, saith the LORD will I assemble her that halteth, —
God will bring to himself you that limp, that hesitate, that tremble, that fear: “I will assemble her that halteth,” —
Micah 4:6. And I will gather her that is driven out —
Hunted by Satan, and harassed by care, frightened by depression of spirit, “I will gather her that is driven out,” —
Micah 4:6. And her that I have afflicted;
If God has laid his hand upon one of you so that you have a special affliction from himself, you have this gracious promise that he will gather you to himself.
Micah 4:7. And I will make her that halted a remnant, and her that was cast far off a strong nation: and the LORD shall reign over them in mount Zion from henceforth, even for ever.
Little scattered communities, churches which have been weak and feeble shall have the strengthening of God, and they shall be, through his sovereign grace, a remnant saved by grace to his praise and glory. Note how everything here is done by God; you keep on reading, “I will,” “I will, “I will.” Oh, those blessed “I wills” of God! Our wills are often defeated and disappointed, but God’s “I wills” stand fast for ever.
Micah 4:8. And thou, O tower of the flock, the stronghold of the daughter of Zion, unto thee shall it come, even the first dominion; the kingdom shall come to the daughter of Jerusalem.
So it did. “Beginning at Jerusalem,” was Christ’s order concerning the preaching of the gospel after his resurrection. The first servants of Christ were of that ancient people who might be called the “tower of the flock, the strong hold of the daughter of Zion.” Oh, that Christ would soon return in mercy to the —
“Chosen seed of Israel’s race,
A remnant weak and small,” —
and gather them to himself, for that would be the fullness of the Gentiles also!
Micah 4:9. Now why dost thou cry out aloud? is there no king in thee? is thy Counsellor perished?
Sometimes, our prayers may be the utterance of our fears rather than of our faith, and then the question comes, “Is there no king in thee? Is thy Counsellor perished?” Can we not trust to him whose name is “Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace”?
Micah 4:10. For pangs have taken thee as a woman in travail.
They are sharp pangs, but they lead to life, and therefore they are blessed pangs after all.
Micah 4:10. Be in pain, and labour to bring forth, O daughter of Zion, like a woman in travail: for now shalt thou go forth out of the city, and thou shalt dwell in the field, and thou shalt go even to Babylon: there shalt thou be delivered; there the LORD shall redeem thee from the hand of thine enemies.
It looks more like a threat than a promise that God would send his people to Babylon, but there they were to be delivered; and it often-times happens with us that we must be brought into captivity before we are set free, we must feel the weight of the iron bondage of sin and Satan before we are brought out into the glorious liberty wherewith Christ makes his people free.
Micah 4:11. Now also many nations are gathered against thee, that say, Let her be defiled, and let our eye look upon Zion.
All the enemies of Israel came together, hoping to destroy her, they saw that God had left her for a while in their hands, so they maliciously sought her destruction.
Micah 4:12. But they know not the thoughts of the LORD, —
They had their own thoughts, and they thought that the Lord meant what they meant, — the entire destruction of the chosen race. So the prophet says, “But they know not the thoughts of the Lord,” —
Micah 4:12. Neither understand they his counsel: for he shall gather them as the sheaves into the floor.
God let them come together, great hosts of them, like the sheaves of wheat upon the threshing-floor. Then see what the Lord says: —
Micah 4:13. Arise and thresh, O daughter of Zion: for I will make thine horn iron, and I will make thy hoofs brass; and thou shalt beat in pieces many people:
She was to be like the ox that treadeth out the corn, and she was to have horns of iron and hoofs of brass with which to break in pieces those that had oppressed her.
Micah 4:13. And I will consecrate their gain unto the LORD, and their substance unto the Lord of the whole earth.
So that, when they expected to destroy her, she destroyed them, and there may come a day when all the great men and the wise men and the proud men of the world will come together to destroy the Church of Christ, but, oh, how mistaken they will be! For when their pride is at its height, then will the poor weak Church of Christ be suddenly strengthened by the Most High, and she shall tread them under her foot, and they shall be utterly defeated, to the praise of the glory of the God of Zion who liveth for ever and ever.