7 I feel so empty inside— like someone starving for grapes or figs, after the vines and trees have all been picked clean. 2 No one is loyal to God; no one does right. Everyone is brutal and eager to deceive everyone else. 3 People cooperate to commit crime. Judges and leaders demand bribes, and rulers cheat in court.[a] 4 The most honest of them is worse than a thorn patch.
Your doom has come! Lookouts sound the warning, and everyone panics. 5 Don’t trust anyone, not even your best friend, and be careful what you say to the one you love.
6 Sons refuse to respect their own fathers, daughters rebel against their own mothers, and daughters-in-law despise their mothers-in-law. Your family is now your enemy. 7 But I trust the Lord God to save me, and I will wait for him to answer my prayer.
The Nation Turns to God
8 My enemies, don’t be glad because of my troubles! I may have fallen, but I will get up; I may be sitting in the dark, but the Lord is my light. 9 I have sinned against the Lord. And so I must endure his anger, until he comes to my defense. But I know that I will see him making things right for me and leading me to the light.
10 You, my enemies, said, “The Lord God is helpless.” Now each of you will be disgraced and put to shame. I will see you trampled like mud in the street.
A Bright Future
11 Towns of Judah, the day is coming when your walls will be rebuilt, and your boundaries enlarged. 12 People will flock to you from Assyria and Egypt, from Babylonia[b] and everywhere else. 13 Those nations will suffer disaster because of what they did.
Micah’s Prayer and the Lord’s Answer
14 Lead your people, Lord! Come and be our shepherd. Grasslands surround us, but we live in a forest. So lead us to Bashan and Gilead,[c] and let us find pasture as we did long ago.
15 I, the Lord, will work miracles just as I did when I led you out of Egypt. 16 Nations will see this and be ashamed because of their helpless armies. They will be in shock, unable to speak or hear, 17 because of their fear of me, your Lord and God. Then they will come trembling, crawling out of their fortresses like insects or snakes, lapping up the dust.
No One Is Like God
The people said:
18 Our God, no one is like you. We are all that is left of your chosen people, and you freely forgive our sin and guilt. You don’t stay angry forever; you’re glad to have pity 19 and pleased to be merciful. You will trample on our sins and throw them in the sea. 20 You will keep your word and be faithful to Jacob and to Abraham, as you promised our ancestors many years ago.
7.3court: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text of verse 3.
7.12Babylonia: The Hebrew text has “the river,” meaning the Euphrates River, which stood for Babylonia.
7.14Bashan and Gilead: Two regions east of the Jordan River, known for their fertile pasturelands.
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