Friday, 26 January 2021
“For this I will lament and wail; I will go stripped and naked; I will make lamentation like the jackals, and mourning like the ostriches.” –Micah 1:8
A contemporary of prophets like Isaiah, Hosea and Amos, the prophet of Micah portrays the pitiful plight of both Israel and Judah. Both are at the verge of God's impending judgment due to their sins. The most detestable sins mentioned by God against His people are idolatry and hypocritical religion. These sins detestable in God's eyes, He calls for severe punishment. All that is recorded in this prophesy as a whole is the just punishment against His people. It was accomplished by the Assyrian army who first invaded Samaria in 722 BC and Judah in 711 BC.
Keeping this historical fact and the realities of those people, let us ask God for its significance in our lives. When we read messages like this, we tend to get so distant and feel it is insignificant to our day to day lives. God's word has its significance in all ages. Hence we do also have to draw conclusions from the above reading. We also are often found with the same sins as that is mentioned here—idolatry and hypocritical religion. It is detestable to God in the same way as it was in those days. The idolatry in today's terms may not be the graven images of olden days but anything that takes importance in our life more than God. It can be our children, our possessions, our job, our relations, our money etc. If this consumes our deepest desires and likes, then it has become our modern day idols. These idols take the very place that is set for God to occupy in our lives. We may call it by any name, or clothe it differently; but like the rich young man who came to the Lord seeking the way to eternity and unwilling to part with his possessions, we too can go away sorrowful. For him his possessions were dearer to him than God himself. Is this the case with you today? Check yourself!
Another grievous sin is clothing oneself with piety that goes without any real power. 2Timothy 3:5 says: “…having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power. Avoid such people.” This is a passage where Paul gives warning at the end times regarding the falling away from faith. How grievous this sin is before a God who has done everything to restore us to Him into a rightful relationship. He gave His only begotten Son to die for our sins and He sends His messengers across our path to give us warnings and directions. These are the sins of our days and lives too. The only remedy against the impending judgment of God is to repent and turn to God. He is our Saviour and He will establish us in His ways.
Let us really lament and mourn for our sins and as it is written by James: “Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Be wretched and mourn and weep. Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom. Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will exalt you.” (James 4:8-10) Let us fast and mourn about our own short falls and turn away from our wicked ways. God will surely forgive us through Christ, heal us and prepare us for our eternity with Him.
“Therefore repent and return, so that your sins may be wiped away, in order that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord;”