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WEEKLY DEVOTIONS

TO THIS LORD'S DAY READING

How to Use These Devotions

Each devotion reflects the sermon's passage for any given week. So, you may use these:

  • to prepare for Sunday (use the devotion before Sunday morning worship), or to reflect back on Sunday (use the devotion after Sunday's worship). Whatever works best for you and your family.

  • to foster family worship with your spouse and/or children.

  • (parents) to help your children learn about Jesus from God's word, along with the rest of the church! Modify the questions for your children's needs. Or, read the "Learning with the Littles" section.

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Ths Suday's Devo

Lord's Day, 5/19/24

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LAMENTING JUDGMENT

As we established in the previous devotion, sin is a terrible tragedy which God hates. All people will be judged according to their sins. Recall how, in the first seven verses of Micah’s prophesy, Micah described with vivid terror what judgment will look like for Israel. Micah said that mountains would melt, valleys would split, Samaria would be made a heap, and carved images would be smashed to pieces. Here, in verse 8, Micah says, “For this, I will lament and wail”. Micah didn’t say this because the judgment was wrong. No, the judgment was good and right, prescribed by the holy, living, just God. Micah said it because the wicked actions of the nation of Israel lead to it. Micah presented himself as a mourner to show the people of Israel that they were in a very precarious position. If they did not repent from their wickedness, promiscuity, and idolatry, they would be held accountable for it with their lives.  

 

As children of the new covenant, it is difficult to imagine such a predicament. Because of the Gospel of the life, death and resurrection of Jesus, the just punishment for our sin is placed on him. Amen, and amen! But we shouldn’t deprive our thoughts of this tragedy, or else we run the risk of undermining the glory of the Gospel. It would help us to think about the way in which our God judges sin. They are judged; make no mistake about it. They are judged by the same God as we see in Micah, with the same severity, and ferocity. We think of Jesus, bearing the weight of God’s wrath. This was not a lesser version of God’s wrath, but the fullness of it. It was not a toned-down wrath, adjusted lower, for the Son of God. It was the pure, unfiltered, unadulterated wrath of God. It wasn’t a wrath meant for one sinful man; it was a wrath meant for the sins of the entire world, placed on one man, Jesus Christ.  

 

What does it look like for a born-again, raised-with-Christ believer to mourn for their judgement? It looks like faith and obedience. It looks like turning from our sin, our filth, and our wickedness, and walking in the Spirit of the Lord. We mourn for our sin and the judgement of our sin, but we rejoice in the love of him who took our place for that judgement. 

REFLECT

  • In verses 10-15, Micah talks about several different cities. If you have a good study bible, or access to the internet, investigate the symbolism behind these cities. Micah is using the names of these cities to communicate some interesting motifs. Otherwise, let this question whet your curiosity. Pastor will go into this in the sermon!

  • Where else in the Bible may we read about the idea of lamenting for judgment to come?​

  • What does Micah mean when he says, “her wound is incurable”, in verse 9? 

LEARNING WITH THE LITTLES

Parents, read Micah 1:7–16 with your kids, and say (or paraphrase, to the effect):

God is very serious about sin. The bible says that the wages of sin is death (Romans  6:23). That means, when we sin, the only fair punishment for sin is being separated from God  forever. In Micah 1:8-16, it says that God’s judgment is to be mourned. It is a very bad thing  that humans have brought sin into God’s world! The great thing is, God has a plan to correct  this. He sent Jesus, his only son, the God-man, to come to earth, live a life of perfect obedience  and die on the cross to pay for the sins of God’s people! We show our thankfulness for this by  living obedient lives in Christ until the end.

Lord's Day, 6/2/24

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God the Witness

In order for us to have a proper understanding of our sin, we must have a proper understanding of God’s holiness. If God were just some indifferent, cuddly, friendly guy in the sky, our sin would not be serious. If we lie, cheat, steal, or kill, it might hurt God’s feelings, but nothing more. He’ll just forgive us and we don’t have to worry about it, right? Wrong— very wrong.

 

God is perfectly, infinitely, awfully holy— beyond any man’s deepest understanding. Because of this, the sins of fallen men are deserving of the fullest extent of God’s just, holy, crushing wrath. This is why it is so important to rightly understand who God is, and who we are in relation to him. In Micah chapter 1, the Israelites are not taking God seriously, and because of this, they aren’t taking their sin seriously. This passage has a very grave tone to it, almost like a father coming home to find that chores were not done yet and bad grades were reported from school.

 

“Hear, you peoples... Pay attention” (verse 2). If you weren’t serious before, you better get serious. Micah warns that God himself is coming down as a witness against the people. This would be incredibly bleak news for the Israelites. Imagine there is a witness against you, and it’s God. Now, this isn’t just a witness who saw you sin; this is a witness who is also the one you offended. Furthermore, he is not just a witness and the offended party, but he is also the Judge, who will decide your fate. This is not looking good. The witness, the offended and the Judge are all one being— and that being is God. Verse 3 says that he is “coming out of his place and will come down.” God, patient as he is, was waiting for the right time to exercise his wrath; like his wrath was in some sort of hibernation, but was now to be made manifest. In the next few verses, Micah describes how God plans to carry out that wrath. He will undo creation (verse 4), he will decimate Samaria (verse 6), and he will lay waste to their idols (verse 7).

 

We must remember, as God’s people, that when we are not serious about our sin, God is.

He has eradicated our sinfulness on the cross and he has made us holy in Christ. The good news is that he is patient. He chose us to be made new, yet we still sin, yet we still blaspheme him and abuse his grace. We must continually repent of our sin until Jesus returns, in the fullness of time, to defeat sin and evil once and for all.

REFLECT

  • Verse 1 gives the historical context for Micah’s prophecies. What are some reasons why this is important for how we understand this book? (If you don’t know, pastor will explain some of that in his sermon.)

  • What does Micah mean by “high places” in verse 3?

  • Notice the language used in verse 7: “from the fee of a prostitute she gathered them, and to the fee of the prostitute they shall return.” Where else in the Bible do we hear language like this? Is this related, and if so, how?

PRAYER

Father, we praise you for your faithfulness in being a just God, who is true to his holy  standard. We ask you to bless us with obedience in Christ, and to help us pursue holiness in  response to the Gospel, which gives us life in you. Amen.

SONGS FOR SUNDAY

#101, Come Thou Almighty King

#261, What Wondrous Love Is This

#281, I Know That My Redeemer Lives—Glory Hallelujah!

Our hymnal is online.

LEARNING WITH THE LITTLES

Parents, read the passage (Micah 1:1–7) with your kids, and say—or paraphrase—to the effect:

Why is sin so bad? Sin is so bad because God is so good! There is nothing better and more righteous than God himself. That means what God calls good is the truly good, and what God calls bad is the truly bad. If we live in a way that is not God’s way, we are living in the worst possible way we can. Because of what Christ has done for us, we have been set free from our bandage to sin! We need to pursue what is good and not what is evil. If we do not, we are not living like those who are free from sin.

PRAYER

Precious, holy God, thank you for saving us, despite our complacency towards holiness. Help us to be more serious about our sin. Conform us to your image, more and more, every single day. Remind us, constantly, that your wrath—which was described in Micah with such convicting detail—has been satisfied in Christ. Allow us to meditate on that truth every minute of the day. We pray this in the precious name of Jesus, amen.

SONGS FOR SUNDAY

#100, Holy, Holy, Holy

#246, Man of Sorrows

#44, How Great Thou Art

Our hymnal is online.

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