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Micah 6-7New International Version - UK (NIVUK)

The Lord’s case against Israel

Listen to what the Lord says:

‘Stand up, plead my case before the mountains;
    let the hills hear what you have to say.

‘Hear, you mountains, the Lord’s accusation;
    listen, you everlasting foundations of the earth.
For the Lord has a case against his people;
    he is lodging a charge against Israel.

‘My people, what have I done to you?
    How have I burdened you? Answer me.
I brought you up out of Egypt
    and redeemed you from the land of slavery.
I sent Moses to lead you,
    also Aaron and Miriam.
My people, remember
    what Balak king of Moab plotted
    and what Balaam son of Beor answered.
Remember your journey from Shittim to Gilgal,
    that you may know the righteous acts of the Lord.’

With what shall I come before the Lord
    and bow down before the exalted God?
Shall I come before him with burnt offerings,
    with calves a year old?
Will the Lord be pleased with thousands of rams,
    with ten thousand rivers of oil?
Shall I offer my firstborn for my transgression,
    the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?
He has shown you, O mortal, what is good.
    And what does the Lord require of you?
To act justly and to love mercy
    and to walk humbly[a] with your God.

Israel’s guilt and punishment

Listen! The Lord is calling to the city –
    and to fear your name is wisdom –
    ‘Heed the rod and the One who appointed it.[b]
10 Am I still to forget your ill-gotten treasures, you wicked house,
    and the short ephah,[c] which is accursed?
11 Shall I acquit someone with dishonest scales,
    with a bag of false weights?
12 Your rich people are violent;
    your inhabitants are liars
    and their tongues speak deceitfully.
13 Therefore, I have begun to destroy you,
    to ruin[d] you because of your sins.
14 You will eat but not be satisfied;
    your stomach will still be empty.[e]
You will store up but save nothing,
    because what you save[f] I will give to the sword.
15 You will plant but not harvest;
    you will press olives but not use the oil,
    you will crush grapes but not drink the wine.
16 You have observed the statutes of Omri
    and all the practices of Ahab’s house;
    you have followed their traditions.
Therefore I will give you over to ruin
    and your people to derision;
    you will bear the scorn of the nations.’[g]

Israel’s misery

What misery is mine!
I am like one who gathers summer fruit
    at the gleaning of the vineyard;
there is no cluster of grapes to eat,
    none of the early figs that I crave.
The faithful have been swept from the land;
    not one upright person remains.
Everyone lies in wait to shed blood;
    they hunt each other with nets.
Both hands are skilled in doing evil;
    the ruler demands gifts,
the judge accepts bribes,
    the powerful dictate what they desire –
    they all conspire together.
The best of them is like a brier,
    the most upright worse than a thorn hedge.
The day God visits you has come,
    the day your watchmen sound the alarm.
    Now is the time of your confusion.
Do not trust a neighbour;
    put no confidence in a friend.
Even with the woman who lies in your embrace
    guard the words of your lips.
For a son dishonours his father,
    a daughter rises up against her mother,
a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law –
    a man’s enemies are the members of his own household.

But as for me, I watch in hope for the Lord,
    I wait for God my Saviour;
    my God will hear me.

Israel will rise

Do not gloat over me, my enemy!
    Though I have fallen, I will rise.
Though I sit in darkness,
    the Lord will be my light.
Because I have sinned against him,
    I will bear the Lord’s wrath,
until he pleads my case
    and upholds my cause.
He will bring me out into the light;
    I will see his righteousness.
10 Then my enemy will see it
    and will be covered with shame,
she who said to me,
    ‘Where is the Lord your God?’
My eyes will see her downfall;
    even now she will be trampled underfoot
    like mire in the streets.

11 The day for building your walls will come,
    the day for extending your boundaries.
12 In that day people will come to you
    from Assyria and the cities of Egypt,
even from Egypt to the Euphrates
    and from sea to sea
    and from mountain to mountain.
13 The earth will become desolate because of its inhabitants,
    as the result of their deeds.

Prayer and praise

14 Shepherd your people with your staff,
    the flock of your inheritance,
which lives by itself in a forest,
    in fertile pasture-lands.[h]
Let them feed in Bashan and Gilead
    as in days long ago.

15 ‘As in the days when you came out of Egypt,
    I will show them my wonders.’

16 Nations will see and be ashamed,
    deprived of all their power.
They will put their hands over their mouths
    and their ears will become deaf.
17 They will lick dust like a snake,
    like creatures that crawl on the ground.
They will come trembling out of their dens;
    they will turn in fear to the Lord our God
    and will be afraid of you.
18 Who is a God like you,
    who pardons sin and forgives the transgression
    of the remnant of his inheritance?
You do not stay angry for ever
    but delight to show mercy.
19 You will again have compassion on us;
    you will tread our sins underfoot
    and hurl all our iniquities into the depths of the sea.
20 You will be faithful to Jacob,
    and show love to Abraham,
as you pledged on oath to our ancestors
    in days long ago.

Footnotes:

  1. Micah 6:8 Or prudently
  2. Micah 6:9 The meaning of the Hebrew for this line is uncertain.
  3. Micah 6:10 An ephah was a dry measure.
  4. Micah 6:13 Or Therefore, I will make you ill and destroy you; / I will ruin
  5. Micah 6:14 The meaning of the Hebrew for this word is uncertain.
  6. Micah 6:14 Or You will press toward birth but not give birth, / and what you bring to birth
  7. Micah 6:16 Septuagint; Hebrew scorn due to my people
  8. Micah 7:14 Or in the middle of Carmel
New International Version - UK (NIVUK)

Holy Bible, New International Version® Anglicized, NIV® Copyright © 1979, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

2 Chronicles 32:1-8New International Version - UK (NIVUK)

Sennacherib threatens Jerusalem

32 After all that Hezekiah had so faithfully done, Sennacherib king of Assyria came and invaded Judah. He laid siege to the fortified cities, thinking to conquer them for himself. When Hezekiah saw that Sennacherib had come and that he intended to wage war against Jerusalem, he consulted with his officials and military staff about blocking off the water from the springs outside the city, and they helped him. They gathered a large group of people who blocked all the springs and the stream that flowed through the land. ‘Why should the kings[a] of Assyria come and find plenty of water?’ they said. Then he worked hard repairing all the broken sections of the wall and building towers on it. He built another wall outside that one and reinforced the terraces[b] of the City of David. He also made large numbers of weapons and shields.

He appointed military officers over the people and assembled them before him in the square at the city gate and encouraged them with these words: ‘Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or discouraged because of the king of Assyria and the vast army with him, for there is a greater power with us than with him. With him is only the arm of flesh, but with us is the Lord our God to help us and to fight our battles.’ And the people gained confidence from what Hezekiah the king of Judah said.

Footnotes:

  1. 2 Chronicles 32:4 Hebrew; Septuagint and Syriac king
  2. 2 Chronicles 32:5 Or the Millo
New International Version - UK (NIVUK)

Holy Bible, New International Version® Anglicized, NIV® Copyright © 1979, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

2 Kings 18:13-18New International Version - UK (NIVUK)

13 In the fourteenth year of King Hezekiah’s reign, Sennacherib king of Assyria attacked all the fortified cities of Judah and captured them. 14 So Hezekiah king of Judah sent this message to the king of Assyria at Lachish: ‘I have done wrong. Withdraw from me, and I will pay whatever you demand of me.’ The king of Assyria exacted from Hezekiah king of Judah three hundred talents[a] of silver and thirty talents[b] of gold. 15 So Hezekiah gave him all the silver that was found in the temple of the Lord and in the treasuries of the royal palace.

16 At this time Hezekiah king of Judah stripped off the gold with which he had covered the doors and doorposts of the temple of the Lord, and gave it to the king of Assyria.

Sennacherib threatens Jerusalem

17 The king of Assyria sent his supreme commander, his chief officer and his field commander with a large army, from Lachish to King Hezekiah at Jerusalem. They came up to Jerusalem and stopped at the aqueduct of the Upper Pool, on the road to the Washerman’s Field. 18 They called for the king; and Eliakim son of Hilkiah the palace administrator, Shebna the secretary, and Joah son of Asaph the recorder went out to them.

Footnotes:

  1. 2 Kings 18:14 That is, about 10 metric tons
  2. 2 Kings 18:14 That is, about one metric ton
New International Version - UK (NIVUK)

Holy Bible, New International Version® Anglicized, NIV® Copyright © 1979, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Isaiah 36:1-3New International Version - UK (NIVUK)

Sennacherib threatens Jerusalem

36 In the fourteenth year of King Hezekiah’s reign, Sennacherib king of Assyria attacked all the fortified cities of Judah and captured them. Then the king of Assyria sent his field commander with a large army from Lachish to King Hezekiah at Jerusalem. When the commander stopped at the aqueduct of the Upper Pool, on the road to the Launderer’s Field, Eliakim son of Hilkiah the palace administrator, Shebna the secretary, and Joah son of Asaph the recorder went out to him.

New International Version - UK (NIVUK)

Holy Bible, New International Version® Anglicized, NIV® Copyright © 1979, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

2 Kings 18:19-37New International Version - UK (NIVUK)

19 The field commander said to them, ‘Tell Hezekiah:

‘“This is what the great king, the king of Assyria, says: on what are you basing this confidence of yours? 20 You say you have the counsel and the might for war – but you speak only empty words. On whom are you depending, that you rebel against me? 21 Look, I know you are depending on Egypt, that splintered reed of a staff, which pierces the hand of anyone who leans on it! Such is Pharaoh king of Egypt to all who depend on him. 22 But if you say to me, ‘We are depending on the Lord our God’– isn’t he the one whose high places and altars Hezekiah removed, saying to Judah and Jerusalem, ‘You must worship before this altar in Jerusalem’?

23 ‘“Come now, make a bargain with my master, the king of Assyria: I will give you two thousand horses – if you can put riders on them! 24 How can you repulse one officer of the least of my master’s officials, even though you are depending on Egypt for chariots and horsemen[a]? 25 Furthermore, have I come to attack and destroy this place without word from the Lord? The Lord himself told me to march against this country and destroy it.”’

26 Then Eliakim son of Hilkiah, and Shebna and Joah said to the field commander, ‘Please speak to your servants in Aramaic, since we understand it. Don’t speak to us in Hebrew in the hearing of the people on the wall.’

27 But the commander replied, ‘Was it only to your master and you that my master sent me to say these things, and not to the people sitting on the wall – who, like you, will have to eat their own excrement and drink their own urine?’

28 Then the commander stood and called out in Hebrew, ‘Hear the word of the great king, the king of Assyria! 29 This is what the king says: do not let Hezekiah deceive you. He cannot deliver you from my hand. 30 Do not let Hezekiah persuade you to trust in the Lord when he says, “The Lord will surely deliver us; this city will not be given into the hand of the king of Assyria.”

31 ‘Do not listen to Hezekiah. This is what the king of Assyria says: make peace with me and come out to me. Then each of you will eat fruit from your own vine and fig-tree and drink water from your own cistern, 32 until I come and take you to a land like your own – a land of grain and new wine, a land of bread and vineyards, a land of olive trees and honey. Choose life and not death!

‘Do not listen to Hezekiah, for he is misleading you when he says, “The Lord will deliver us.” 33 Has the god of any nation ever delivered his land from the hand of the king of Assyria? 34 Where are the gods of Hamath and Arpad? Where are the gods of Sepharvaim, Hena and Ivvah? Have they rescued Samaria from my hand? 35 Who of all the gods of these countries has been able to save his land from me? How then can the Lord deliver Jerusalem from my hand?’

36 But the people remained silent and said nothing in reply, because the king had commanded, ‘Do not answer him.’

37 Then Eliakim son of Hilkiah the palace administrator, Shebna the secretary, and Joah son of Asaph the recorder went to Hezekiah, with their clothes torn, and told him what the field commander had said.

Footnotes:

  1. 2 Kings 18:24 Or charioteers
New International Version - UK (NIVUK)

Holy Bible, New International Version® Anglicized, NIV® Copyright © 1979, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Isaiah 36:4-22New International Version - UK (NIVUK)

The field commander said to them, ‘Tell Hezekiah:

‘“This is what the great king, the king of Assyria, says: on what are you basing this confidence of yours? You say you have counsel and might for war – but you speak only empty words. On whom are you depending, that you rebel against me? Look, I know you are depending on Egypt, that splintered reed of a staff, which pierces the hand of anyone who leans on it! Such is Pharaoh king of Egypt to all who depend on him. But if you say to me, ‘We are depending on the Lord our God’– isn’t he the one whose high places and altars Hezekiah removed, saying to Judah and Jerusalem, ‘You must worship before this altar’?

‘“Come now, make a bargain with my master, the king of Assyria: I will give you two thousand horses – if you can put riders on them! How then can you repulse one officer of the least of my master’s officials, even though you are depending on Egypt for chariots and horsemen[a]? 10 Furthermore, have I come to attack and destroy this land without the Lord? The Lord himself told me to march against this country and destroy it.”’

11 Then Eliakim, Shebna and Joah said to the field commander, ‘Please speak to your servants in Aramaic, since we understand it. Don’t speak to us in Hebrew in the hearing of the people on the wall.’

12 But the commander replied, ‘Was it only to your master and you that my master sent me to say these things, and not to the people sitting on the wall – who, like you, will have to eat their own excrement and drink their own urine?’

13 Then the commander stood and called out in Hebrew, ‘Hear the words of the great king, the king of Assyria! 14 This is what the king says: do not let Hezekiah deceive you. He cannot deliver you! 15 Do not let Hezekiah persuade you to trust in the Lord when he says, “The Lord will surely deliver us; this city will not be given into the hand of the king of Assyria.”

16 ‘Do not listen to Hezekiah. This is what the king of Assyria says: make peace with me and come out to me. Then each of you will eat fruit from your own vine and fig-tree and drink water from your own cistern, 17 until I come and take you to a land like your own – a land of corn and new wine, a land of bread and vineyards.

18 ‘Do not let Hezekiah mislead you when he says, “The Lord will deliver us.” Have the gods of any nations ever delivered their lands from the hand of the king of Assyria? 19 Where are the gods of Hamath and Arpad? Where are the gods of Sepharvaim? Have they rescued Samaria from my hand? 20 Who of all the gods of these countries have been able to save their lands from me? How then can the Lord deliver Jerusalem from my hand?’

21 But the people remained silent and said nothing in reply, because the king had commanded, ‘Do not answer him.’

22 Then Eliakim son of Hilkiah the palace administrator, Shebna the secretary and Joah son of Asaph the recorder went to Hezekiah, with their clothes torn, and told him what the field commander had said.

Footnotes:

  1. Isaiah 36:9 Or charioteers
New International Version - UK (NIVUK)

Holy Bible, New International Version® Anglicized, NIV® Copyright © 1979, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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