Many churches throughout the world use a Bible reading schedule called a "lectionary." It's just a fancy word meaning "selected readings." Posts like this reflect on the readings for an upcoming Sunday or other Church holiday, as found in the three-year lectionary.
Our Old Testament reading for this week is Micah 6:1-8. In this reading, God accuses his people of neglecting him. He asks what has gone wrong. Has he been wearisome? Has he offended them? It isn’t uncommon for people to act as if they despise God. Why is this? History, as God reminds his people in this passage, shows that God is the one who rescues his people. When they are enslaved he redeems them from slavery. When they don’t know where to go or what to do he raises up prophets. He has created a sacrificial system so they can be forgiven of their sin. When they ignore God and reject him, he still guards them and draws them back to himself.
What is the response God desires? Should we give great offerings, burnt offerings, rich gifts? Thousands of rams? Rivers of oil, a precious offering? Do we give our children? That is what the false gods require.
Rather than those offerings, here is what God requires. Do justice. Love kindness. Walk in humility. Sadly, history has shown that these are not in our natural vocabulary. We want to define justice. We want to love kindness or mercy, but really just our own, as we have defined it. We want to walk humbly as long as everyone else recognizes it.
It would be easier for us to make the precious offerings described in verse seven than to actually meet the demands of verse eight. Our sinful state prevents us. It is nothing God has done. It is our doing. The prophecy of Micah declares us guilty.
What is the cure for that guilt? God has given us that as well. He gave his Son, God the Son, true man and true God, to die in our place, taking our guilt upon himself. Our response is to look to the righteousness of Christ, to do the justice he does, to love his mercy, and to see that we are not God.
If this brief meditation was helpful to you, I hope you will check out the other materials on our website at www.WittenbergCoMo.com and consider supporting us.