Come and present your case to the hills and mountains. 2 Israel, I am bringing charges against you— I call upon the mountains and the earth’s firm foundation to be my witnesses.
3 My people, have I wronged you in any way at all? Please tell me. 4 I rescued you from Egypt, where you were slaves. I sent Moses, Aaron, and Miriam to be your leaders. 5 Don’t forget the evil plans of King Balak of Moab or what Balaam son of Beor[a] said to him. Remember how I, the Lord, saved you many times on your way from Acacia to Gilgal.[b]
6 What offering should I bring when I bow down to worship the Lord God Most High? Should I try to please him[c] by sacrificing calves a year old? 7 Will thousands of sheep or rivers of olive oil make God satisfied with me? Should I sacrifice to the Lord my first-born child as payment for my terrible sins? 8 The Lord God has told us what is right and what he demands: “See that justice is done, let mercy be your first concern, and humbly obey your God.”
Cheating and Violence
9 I am the Lord, and it makes sense to respect my power to punish. So listen to my message for the city of Jerusalem:[d] 10 You store up stolen treasures and use dishonest scales.[e] 11 But I, the Lord, will punish you for cheating with weights and with measures. 12 You rich people are violent, and everyone tells lies.
13 Because of your sins, I will wound you and leave you ruined and defenseless. 14 You will eat, but still be hungry; you will store up goods, but lose everything— I, the Lord, will let it all be captured in war. 15 You won’t harvest what you plant or use the oil from your olive trees or drink the wine from grapes you grow.
16 Jerusalem, this will happen because you followed the sinful example of kings Omri and Ahab.[f] Now I will destroy you and your property. Then the people of every nation will make fun and insult you.
6.5Acacia to Gilgal: Acacia was where the Israelites camped after the experience with Balaam (see Numbers 25.1; Joshua 2.1; 3.1); Gilgal was where they camped while waiting to attack Jericho (see Joshua 4.19—5.12).
6.6try to please him: This refers to what are traditionally called “burnt sacrifices,” which were offered as a way of pleasing the Lord.
6.9Jerusalem: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text of verse 9.
6.10scales: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text of verse 10.
6.16Omri and Ahab: King Ahab was the son of Omri and the husband of the evil Jezebel. Almost two centuries before Micah, the prophet Elijah had spoken against the idolatry and the other sinful practices that Ahab had encouraged in Israel (see 1 Kings 16.21-34; 18.1-18; 21.1-26).
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