Saturday, December 19, 2015

A three-part test for living

scales, gavel & book symbolizing justice
TODAY'S SPECIAL: Micah 6:1-16

TO CHEW ON: "He has shown you, O man, what is good;
And what does the Lord require of you
But to do justly
To love mercy
And to walk humbly with your God?" Micah 6:8

On analyzing the law, the rabbis found 613 statutes to keep.*

In Psalm 15, David tells us how to "…abide in Your tabernacle, dwell in Your holy hill … never be moved" in 11 principles.

In Isaiah 33:15, these are restated in six commands.

But here in Micah, the way to live pleasing to God is further distilled into three precepts:
  • Do justly
  • Love mercy
  • Walk humbly with your God.

Justice. Mercy. Humility.

Restated in plain speech:
  • Do what is right, fair, honest and above-board.
  • Love mercy [chesed  - kindness, unfailing love, tenderness, faithfulness] and so live in a rounded-edge way as we act out that justice.
  • Live humbly with an attitude that puts itself under God and His direction and is realistic before people (lives with the knowledge, for example, that all one's gifts, talents, successes are many-faceted—the result of the way God made us, orchestrated our circumstances, lavished on us the gifts of the parents, upbringing, education, modern conveniences of our time, etc.).

Here is Micah 6:8 from The Message:

But he’s already made it plain how to live, what to do,
    what God is looking for in men and women.
It’s quite simple: Do what is fair and just to your neighbor,
    be compassionate and loyal in your love,
And don’t take yourself too seriously—
    take God seriously.

We could use these three things in a simple test for every thought, action, reaction, plan, goal:

- Is it just?
- Is it kind, merciful, faithful?
- Is it humbly submitted to God?

PRAYER: Dear God, help me to not only know these principles in my head, but to apply them in my everyday life. Amen.


* Facts from the commentary on Micah by Willard S. Elijahson, New Spirit-Filled Life Bible, p. 1210.

Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture is taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Scripture taken from The Message. Copyright © 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2002. Used by permission of NavPress Publishing Group.

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