New English Translation
14 Therefore you[a] will have to say farewell[b] to Moresheth Gath.
The residents[c] of Achzib[d] will be as disappointing
as a dried up well[e] to the kings of Israel.[f]
15 Residents of Mareshah,[g] a conqueror will attack you;[h]
the leaders of Israel shall flee to Adullam.[i]
16 Shave your heads bald as you mourn for the children you love;[j]
shave your foreheads as bald[k] as an eagle,[l]
for they are taken from you into exile.
- Micah 1:14 tn The subject of the feminine singular verb is probably Lachish.
- Micah 1:14 tn Heb “you will give a dowry to”; NAB, NASB, NIV, NRSV “give parting gifts to.” Lachish is compared to a father who presents wedding gifts to his daughter as she leaves her father’s home to take up residence with her husband. In similar fashion Lachish will bid farewell to Moresheth Gath, for the latter will be taken by the invader.
- Micah 1:14 tn Heb “houses.” By metonymy this refers to the people who live in them.
- Micah 1:14 sn The place name Achzib (אַכְזִיב, ʾakhziv, “place on the dried up river”; see HALOT 45 s.v. אַכְזָב) creates a word play on the similar sounding term כָּזָב (kazav, “lie, deception”; HALOT 468 s.v. כָּזָב). Like the dried up river upon which its name was based, the city of Achzib would fail to help the kings of Israel in their time of need.
- Micah 1:14 tn Or “will be a deception.” The term אַכְזָב (ʾakhzav) is often translated “deception,” derived from the verb I כָּזָב (“to deceive, lie”; HALOT 467-68 s.v. I כזב). However, it probably means “what is dried up,” since (1) the noun elsewhere refers to an empty well or dried river in summer (Jer 15:18; cf. Job 6:15-20) (HALOT 45 s.v. אַכְזָב); (2) the place-name “Achzib” (אַכְזִיב) literally means “place on the אַכְזָב [dried up river]” (HALOT 45 s.v. אַכְזָב); and (3) it is derived from the verb II כָּזָב (“to dry up [brook]”; Isa 58:11), which also appears in Mishnaic Hebrew and Arabic. The point of the metaphor is that Achzib will be as disappointing to the kings of Israel as a dried up spring in the summer is to a thirsty traveler in the Jordanian desert.
- Micah 1:14 sn Because of the enemy invasion, Achzib would not be able to deliver soldiers for the army and/or services normally rendered to the crown.
- Micah 1:15 sn The place name Mareshah sounds like the Hebrew word for “conqueror.”
- Micah 1:15 tn Heb “Again a conqueror I will bring to you, residents of Mareshah.” The first person verb is problematic, for the Lord would have to be the subject (cf. NAB, NASB, NIV, NRSV, NLT). But the prophet appears to be delivering this lament and the Lord is referred to in the third person in v. 12. Consequently many emend the verb to a third person form (יָבוֹא, yavoʾ) and understand the “conqueror” as subject.
- Micah 1:15 tn Heb “to Adullam the glory of Israel will go.” This probably means that the nation’s leadership will run for their lives and, like David of old, hide from their enemy in the caves of Adullam. Cf. NIV’s “He who is the glory of Israel will come to Adullam,” which sounds as if an individual is in view, and could be understood as a messianic reference.
- Micah 1:16 tn Heb “over the sons of your delight.”
- Micah 1:16 tn Heb “make wide your baldness.”
- Micah 1:16 tn Or “a vulture” (cf. NIV, TEV); CEV “a buzzard.” The Hebrew term נֶשֶׁר (nesher) refers to the griffon vulture or eagle.