In this masterful commentary, respected biblical scholar Bruce Waltke carefully interprets the message of the prophet Micah, building a bridge between Micah’s ancient world and our life today.
Waltke’s Commentary on Micah quickly distinguishes itself from other commentaries on this book by displaying an unprecedented exegetical thoroughness, an expert understanding of historical context, and a keen interest in illuminating the contribution of Micah to Christian theology. Tackling hard questions about date and authorship, Waltke contends that Micah himself wrote and edited the nineteen sermons comprising the book. Waltke’s clear analytical outline leads readers through the three cycles of Micah, each beginning with an oracle of doom and ending with an oracle of hope, decisively showing that hope wins over doom.
Learned yet amazingly accessible, combining scholarly erudition with passion for Micah’s contemporary relevance, this book will well serve teachers, pastors, and students alike.
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Bruce K. Waltke (1930– ) is an Old Testament scholar, distinguished professor of Old Testament at Knox Theological Seminary, and professor emeritus of Old Testament studies at Regent College. He has also taught at Dallas Theological Seminary, Westminster Theological Seminary, Reformed Theological Seminary, and Regent College. He has served as president of the Evangelical Theological Society.
“To judge from these parallels, Micah’s identification as a Moreshtite (Mic 1:1, 14; see the commentary) implies that he was an outsider to the capitals. Were he ministering in his hometown, he would probably have been called, ‘Micah son of so and so.’ Unlike Amos, who did not regard himself and was not regarded by others as a prophet but as a shepherd, Micah had the identity of a ‘professional’ prophet, that is, he belonged to a recognized class of charismatic figures in Israel who shaped the nation’s foreign policies through their prophecies. Micah’s powerful voice changed Hezekiah’s heart, reshaped Judah’s policies, and so saved the nation from immediate catastrophe (cf. Jer 26:17–19).” (Page 3)
“In a breathtaking turn, Micah shifts from the judicial sentence reducing Jerusalem into a heap of rubble and its temple into a pagan high place in a deadly forest to a vision of a hidden future in which Jerusalem and its temple will become the center of global justice and righteousness and of international peace and prosperity.” (Page 204)
“Suffice it here to note that each section commences with the imperative ‘hear’ or ‘listen’ (1:2; 3:1; 6:1) and that the hope sections all contain the motif of shepherding (2:12; 4:8; 5:3; 7:14) and, more importantly, mention the remnant (2:12–13; 4:6–7; 5:6–7[7–8]; 7:18).” (Page 15)
“It is now apparent that the practice of ḥesed is closely related to mišpāṭ: both pertain to the deliverance of an oppressed, weaker party by the stronger party, but whereas mišpāṭ puts the emphasisis on the action, ḥesed puts it on the attitude behind the action. Although I AM practices both justice and ḥesed toward Israel, Israel failed to respond by extending these virtues to one another (see chs. 2 and 3). Mic 6:8 shows that the I AM Jesus in his famous Sermon on the Mount did not abolish torah but indicated its true spiritual nature (cf. Matt 5:17–48).” (Page 394)