Welcome to BibleBum where we are exploring the entire Bible in one year to better learn how to follow God’s instructions and discover the purpose for our lives. The BibleBum blog uses The One Year Chronological Bible, the New Living Translation version. At the end of each day’s reading, Rob, a cultural history aficionado and seminary graduate, answers questions from Leigh An, the blogger host, about the daily scripture. To start from the beginning, click on “Index” and select Day 1.
Questions & Observations
Q. (Isaiah 34:1-7): This is all speaking metaphorically, right? V. 5 says that “when my sword has finished its work in the heavens, it will fall upon Edom.” Why would God need to “clean house” in the heavens?
A. This will sound a bit odd, but it refers to the destruction and displacement of the stars/heavens in the previous verses. I’m not exactly sure what he is saying, but it appears to mean that God will violently destroy the heavens on the Day of Judgment (to make the way for the new Heaven and Earth), and the metaphorical extension of this metaphor is to say that God will destroy these heavenly bodies with His sword. It should as you say, in NO WAY be taken literally.
Q. (34:16): This is very clever prose. The verse makes an emphasis on the fact that the new inhabitants of Edom — jackals, owls, desert animals, hyenas, wild goats, night creatures and buzzards — will live there with mates, ensuring that they will have offspring and continue to inhabit the land.
A. Clever isn’t it? My notes indicate the Edom is used here as a symbolic nation that represents all the enemy nations of Israel.
Q. (Micah 2:3): I like the ring of that “I will reward evil with evil.”
A. That is God’s prerogative. We are called to something different: Matthew 5:43-48, Romans 12:14-21.
Q. (2:6-11): Basically, this says that a crime against people is a sin against God. You hurt his people, you answer to Him.
A. Yes, all sin is ultimately against God, including evil against other people. It is part of the reason that when Jesus was asked about the greatest commandment, He gave two answers: love God, and love your neighbor (Matthew 22:36-40).
Q. (4:6-13): I had a thought from this passage: God is punishing the other nations for influencing them to worship other idols and act wicked. Thus, He is destroying them and making Jerusalem a beacon to show that He is Lord of lords. Is this accurate?
A. I would say it is.
Q. (5:2): Is Jesus the one Micah is speaking of?
A. The writer of Matthew’s Gospel sure thought so: see Matthew 2:3-6.