Truth and Mercy to Israel
This study … is our last study in the book of Micah.
If we have learned one thing from the word of God in Micah, it is this one thing.
From the beginning to the end, we have learned that prophecy involves the future things … concerning the future events.
Again, prophecy is a foretelling; it is a prediction of something that is to happen; and lastly, it is a declaration of something to come.
History is [merely] the record of the fulfilled prophecy.
Micah 7:18 “Who is a God like unto thee,
that pardoneth iniquity, and passeth by the
transgression of the remnant of his heritage? he
retaineth not his anger for ever, because he
delighteth in mercy.
19 He will turn again, he will have compassion upon us; he will subdue our iniquities; and thou wilt cast all their sins into the depths of the sea.
20 Thou wilt perform the truth to Jacob, and the mercy to Abraham, which thou hast sworn unto our fathers from the days of old.”
Verse eighteen: “Who is a God like unto thee, that pardoneth iniquity, and passeth by the transgression of the remnant of his heritage? he retaineth not his anger for ever, because he delighteth in mercy."
Who can pardon sin? Is there any man on this earth that is able to pardon your sins, or my sins, in this New Testament Church Age? In particular, can a Roman Catholic priest actually pardon any ones sins, or “iniquity”?
My friend, not even the blood of an animal shed by the priest in the Old Testament could do that! The Bible shows us this in the book of Hebrews chapter ten, verse four: “For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and of goats should take away sins.” [Hebrews 10:4]
As a Roman Catholic, for the first twelve years of my life on this earth, I was taught that the Church of Rome‘s priests replaced [and continue] the Aaronic priesthood of Israel. This thing could not be further from the truth!
What we have here rather is this. The Scripture tells us, clearly, that only God can pardon a man’s sin. It is as clear as the nose on your face! The Holy Spirit is speaking through the prophet Micah rhetorically with this question; “Who is a God like unto thee”? Why there is NONE!
Now, something else, we will find in the Bible that to “pardoneth iniquity” means to receive forgiveness for sin. For instance, when King Saul asked forgiveness for his sin [in First Samuel chapter fifteen, verse twenty-five] he is going to a man … to an Old Testament prophet who was even not in the priesthood of Aaron! “Now therefore, I pray thee, pardon my sin, and turn again with me, that I may worship the Lord.” [1 Samuel 15:25] [Saul would make a good Roman Catholic!] Saul should have gone to God!
When will man learn?
What we have here [in verse eighteen] is a prophecy of a particular future event. In this future event, God is going to pardon the “remnant of his heritage”, which is Israel. Israel is going to receive forgiveness for their transgressions [for their iniquity].
This event will occur during the Great Tribulation [Revelation 7:14] … in those days as revealed by the prophet Jeremiah in Jeremiah chapter fifty, verse twenty: “In those days, and in that time, saith the Lord, the iniquity of Israel shall be sought for, and there shall be none; and the sins of Judah, and they shall not be found: for I will pardon them whom I reserve." [Jeremiah 50:20]
God pardons those HE has reserved! Amen!
Now, for verse nineteen: “He will turn again, he will have compassion upon us; he will subdue our iniquities; and thou wilt cast all their sins into the depths of the sea.”
Because God “delights in mercy”, He will turn again in His “compassion” to the nation of Israel.
This prophecy was laid out over 3,500 years ago through God’s prophet and priest – Moses, in Deuteronomy chapter thirty, verses three thru nine: “That then the Lord thy God will turn thy captivity, and have compassion upon thee, and will return and gather thee from all the nations, whither the Lord thy God hath scattered thee.
If any of thine be driven out unto the outmost parts of heaven, from thence will the Lord thy God gather thee, and from thence will he fetch thee:
And the Lord thy God will bring thee into the land which thy fathers possessed, and thou shalt possess it; and he will do thee good, and multiply thee above thy fathers.
And the Lord thy God will circumcise thine heart, and the heart of thy seed, to love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, that thou mayest live.
And the Lord thy God will put all these curses upon thine enemies, and on them that hate thee, which persecuted thee.
And thou shalt return and obey the voice of the Lord, and do all his commandments which I command thee this day.
And the Lord thy God will make thee plenteous in every work of thine hand, in the fruit of thy body, and in the fruit of thy cattle, and in the fruit of thy land, for good: for the Lord will again rejoice over thee for good, as he rejoiced over thy fathers:” [Deuteronomy 30:3-9].
Look at what God is doing for Jacob, and at what God will be doing for Jacob:
1. God is bringing Jacob back to their LAND.
2. God will be good to Jacob.
3. God will multiply Jacob.
4. God will circumcise Jacob in their hearts.
5. God will make Israel fruitful.
Now for verse twenty: ”Thou wilt perform the truth to Jacob, and the mercy to Abraham, which thou hast sworn unto our fathers from the days of old.”
God sends His prophets “early” so that the people might know the word of God, and perform the doing of it. There needs to be this “performance” of what God has told man!
This is what we see throughout the Old Testament concerning the Jewish nation.
For proof of this look at Jeremiah chapter thirty-five, verse fifteen: “I have sent also unto you all my servants the prophets, rising up early and sending them, saying, Return ye now every man from his evil way, and amend your doings, and go not after other gods to serve them, and ye shall dwell in the land which I have given to you and to your fathers: but ye have not inclined your ear, nor hearkened unto me.” [Jeremiah 35:15]
Israel failed to perform that which was given to them.
This is also what we see in the New Testament, concerning the born again believers in Jesus Christ. In Second Corinthians chapter eight, we see that we are to perform the doing of God’s word, which in this case, was the church of Corinth following through with their “love” gift [in verse 24]. “Now therefore perform the doing of it; that as there was a readiness to will, so there may be a performance also out of that which ye have.” [2 Corinthians 8:11]
Quite often we fail to perform that which was given to us.
But God never fails.
In the end, God brings what HE foretells to pass, and this, always happens without failure.
My friend, God will “perform the truth to Jacob, and the mercy to Abraham.”
You and I can count on the performance of it!
We close our study in the book of Micah with this promise made to us [the believers in Jesus Christ] who live in the Age of Grace.
Now, may I ask you this?
• WHO is a God like this God of the Bible?
• WHO is a God that pardons iniquity and passes by the transgression of men and nations?
• WHO is a God that has compassion upon us all?
• WHO is a God WHO subdued all our iniquities?
• WHO is this God that will cast all our sins into the depth of the sea?
HE is the same God WHO was manifest in the flesh [according to Second Timothy chapter two, verse sixteen].
Jesus Christ is JEHOVAH!
If you come to HIM God will perform mercy and truth to you!
1. HE will pardon you!
2. HE will have compassion on you!
3. HE will perform it for you!
“Faithful is he that calleth you, who also will do it.” [1 Thessalonians 5:24]