Mic. 4:1 But in the last days it shall come to pass, that the mountain of the house of the LORD shall be established in the top of the mountains, and it shall be exalted above the hills; and people shall flow unto it.
Mic. 4:2 And many nations shall come, and say, Come, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, and to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for the law shall go forth of Zion, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem.
“in the last days” – This is a reference to the time preceding the Lord’s second coming and including in context the establishment of His kingdom.
During the Kingdom it would seem that the temple mount will be on a higher elevation than other hills and mountains. It will be a place that is honored and exalted among the people on planet earth. It will be a place that people will be drawn to visit. Interesting to note is that many, not “all,” nations/Gentiles will seek to go to Jerusalem and the temple to be instructed about how God wants them to live. They will take to heart what they learn and act accordingly. This should be the mindset of every Christian—to learn God’s will as revealed in His word and to live accordingly. Jesus taught that those who loved Him would do as He commanded.
John 14:23 Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words….
These verses sounded very familiar, and no wonder, they were included in my study of Isaiah.
Is. 2:2 And it shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of the LORD’S house shall be established in the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow unto it.
Is. 2:3 And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem.
Is. 2:4 And he shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more.
Mic. 4:3 And he shall judge among many people, and rebuke strong nations afar off; and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up a sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more.
My thoughts have not changed since I studied this verse in Isaiah.
I think the better translation for the word judge would be govern (which includes judgments of guilt and innocence). The Lord will govern the Gentiles as well as Israel, and He will rebuke/correct/chasten many of these nations/peoples. The next phrase is a commentary on how He will govern. The nations will be forced to change their weapons of destruction into implements for use in agriculture. The nations will no longer be allowed to attack one another, or teach military tactics, or incite peoples against one another.
The Lord will rule as a dictator, but not like any dictator this world has ever known. He will rule with complete righteousness and holiness. In today’s society He would be seen as infringing upon the rights of the individual to make choices regarding his own welfare. He would be tagged as intolerant and not politically correct.
Following is a quote from an article at www.offthegridnews.com from July 2013 entititled “Swords into Plowshares.”
In the United Nations garden there is a bronze statue of a man swinging a hammer with one hand at a sword that he’s holding in the other. The statue is called, “Let Us Beat Swords into Plowshares.” It’s the work of the Russian-born sculptor Evgeniy Vuchetich. According to the United Nations’ website, the statue symbolizes “man’s desire to put an end to war and convert the means of destruction into creative tools for the benefit of all mankind.”
This will never happen until God is on the throne in the person of His Son Jesus and the whole world is subject to His rule.
Mic. 4:4 But they shall sit every man under his vine and under his fig tree; and none shall make them afraid: for the mouth of the LORD of hosts hath spoken it.
This is a continuation of the thought in the previous verse. The Lord is declaring that in His kingdom man will not have to fear other men. People will be safe on their own property. Scripture tells us that Jesus is going to rule with a rod of iron.
Psa. 2:6-9 Yet have I set my king upon my holy hill of Zion. I will declare the decree: the LORD hath said unto me, Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee. Ask of me, and I shall give thee the heathen for thine inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for thy possession. Thou shalt break them with a rod of iron; thou shalt dash them in pieces like a potter’s vessel.
Rev. 12:5 And she brought forth a man child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron: and her child was caught up unto God, and to his throne.
Rev. 19:15-16 And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.
“the mouth of the Lord…” – This is a statement of surety. Scripture is very clear in stating that anything and everything the Lord purposes will be done.
Is. 14:24 The LORD of hosts hath sworn, saying, Surely as I have thought, so shall it come to pass; and as I have purposed, so shall it stand….
Is. 46:9 Remember the former things of old: for I am God, and there is none else; I am God, and there is none like me,
Is. 46:10 Declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure:
Is. 46:11 Calling a ravenous bird from the east, the man that executeth my counsel from a far country: yea, I have spoken it, I will also bring it to pass; I have purposed it, I will also do it.
Mic. 4:5 For all people will walk every one in the name of his god, and we will walk in the name of the LORD our God for ever and ever.
This verse teaches an important truth. God never forces people to serve Him. Love and obedience that is forced is not true love or obedience. That is why God sovereignly chose to give man the freedom to make his own choices. The prophet is declaring a time when the people of Israel will choose to walk in obedience to YHWH as their Lord forever. As He does with all who choose to follow Him, YHWH is going to give His people a new heart and new spirit as declared by both Jeremiah and Ezekiel.
Jer. 31:33 But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the LORD, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people.
Jer. 31:34 And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the LORD: for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the LORD: for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.
Ezek. 36:24 For I will take you from among the heathen, and gather you out of all countries, and will bring you into your own land.
Ezek. 36:25 Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you, and ye shall be clean: from all your filthiness, and from all your idols, will I cleanse you.
Ezek. 36:26 A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh.
Ezek. 36:27 And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them.
Ezek. 36:28 And ye shall dwell in the land that I gave to your fathers; and ye shall be my people, and I will be your God.
2Cor. 5:17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
Gal. 6:15 For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision, but a new creature.
Mic. 4:6 In that day, saith the LORD, will I assemble her that halteth, and I will gather her that is driven out, and her that I have afflicted;
Mic. 4:7 And I will make her that halted a remnant, and her that was cast far off a strong nation: and the LORD shall reign over them in mount Zion from henceforth, even for ever.
“In that day” – Refers back to “in the last days” as established in verse 1.
“her that halteth…is driven out…I have afflicted” = Israel
YHWH is declaring His intention to receive/recover/put all together (all from the Hebrew) the pieces of the scattered nation of Israel. He is going to gather together all the people from where they had been scattered after being forced out of Israel. Point is made that it was God’s judgment that resulted in His people being scattered throughout the earth. Their dispersion and regathering was, in fact, prophesied by Moses.
Deut. 30:1 And it shall come to pass, when all these things are come upon thee, the blessing and the curse, which I have set before thee, and thou shalt call them to mind among all the nations, whither the LORD thy God hath driven thee,
Deut. 30:2 And shalt return unto the LORD thy God, and shalt obey his voice according to all that I command thee this day, thou and thy children, with all thine heart, and with all thy soul;
Deut. 30:3 That then the LORD thy God will turn thy captivity, and have compassion upon thee, and will return and gather thee from all the nations, whither the LORD thy God hath scattered thee.
When the Lord returns to re-gather His people and establish His kingdom, it will be to the response of the remnant that He is going to bring through the refining fires of the 70th week of Daniel—a people who will choose to follow Him in obedience and will plead for His return.
Matt. 23:37 O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not!
Matt. 23:38 Behold, your house is left unto you desolate.
Matt. 23:39 For I say unto you, Ye shall not see me henceforth, till ye shall say, Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord.
He will also make them a powerful/numerous nation. He will then personally rule over them forever from Mount Zion. This is another promise of God.
Mic. 4:8 And thou, O tower of the flock, the strong hold of the daughter of Zion, unto thee shall it come, even the first dominion; the kingdom shall come to the daughter of Jerusalem.
Scripture defines “the daughter of Zion” as Jerusalem.
Is. 10:32 As yet shall he remain at Nob that day: he shall shake his hand against the mount of the daughter of Zion, the hill of Jerusalem.
Is. 52:2 Shake thyself from the dust; arise, and sit down, O Jerusalem: loose thyself from the bands of thy neck, O captive daughter of Zion.
The Lord is often referred to in scripture as a shepherd and His people as a flock of sheep. The Hebrew for tower references a “bed of flowers.” I think the Lord is saying that He is going to restore Jerusalem to the beauty/glory she enjoyed during the reign of King Solomon. The Lord of lords and King of kings is going to rule from Jerusalem.
Jer. 3:16 And it shall come to pass, when ye be multiplied and increased in the land, in those days, saith the LORD, they shall say no more, The ark of the covenant of the LORD: neither shall it come to mind: neither shall they remember it; neither shall they visit it; neither shall that be done any more.
Jer. 3:17 At that time they shall call Jerusalem the throne of the LORD; and all the nations shall be gathered unto it, to the name of the LORD, to Jerusalem: neither shall they walk any more after the imagination of their evil heart.
Is. 24:23 Then the moon shall be confounded, and the sun ashamed, when the LORD of hosts shall reign in mount Zion, and in Jerusalem, and before his ancients gloriously.
Mic. 4:9 Now why dost thou cry out aloud? is there no king in thee? is thy counsellor perished? for pangs have taken thee as a woman in travail.
Mic. 4:10 Be in pain, and labour to bring forth, O daughter of Zion, like a woman in travail: for now shalt thou go forth out of the city, and thou shalt dwell in the field, and thou shalt go even to Babylon; there shalt thou be delivered; there the LORD shall redeem thee from the hand of thine enemies.
At this point the prophet begins declaring the response of the people as they realize their threat from mighty Babylon. (Note: At the time Micah was prophesying Babylon was yet to rise to power.) Their time in exile is described as a time of labor pains that will result in the rebirth of the nation when YHWH redeems them from their enemies.
There was a time when I would only have seen a reference to the kingdom of Nebuchadnezzar in these verses, and that application is valid. However, in context with the rest of this chapter I believe there is a future final fulfillment regarding the kingdom of Antichrist and the Babylon of end times as referenced in Revelation 18-19.
“is there no king in thee?” – At the time of Micah’s prophecy there was a king though he would be unable to protect them from the judgment to come; in the end times they will have no king until they call for King Jesus to return.
“is there no counselor in thee?” – I think this would be a reference to the priests who were supposed to provide spiritual guidance to the people. In Micah’s day there was a priesthood, such as it was; in the end times there will be no priesthood until the 70th week, and that will only be allowed for a short time.
Mic. 4:11 Now also many nations are gathered against thee, that say, Let her be defiled, and let our eye look upon Zion.
Mic. 4:12 But they know not the thoughts of the LORD, neither understand they his counsel: for he shall gather them as the sheaves into the floor.
Mic. 4:13 Arise and thresh, O daughter of Zion: for I will make thine horn iron, and I will make thy hoofs brass: and thou shalt beat in pieces many people: and I will consecrate their gain unto the LORD, and their substance unto the Lord of the whole earth.
I think the NLT gives a clear understanding of these verses.
True, many nations have gathered together against you, calling for your blood, eager to gloat over your destruction. But they do not know the LORD’s thoughts or understand his plan. These nations don’t know that he is gathering them together to be beaten and trampled like bundles of grain on a threshing floor. “Rise up and destroy the nations, O Jerusalem!” says the LORD. “For I will give you iron horns and bronze hooves, so you can trample many nations to pieces. Then you will give all the wealth they acquired as offerings to me, the Lord of all the earth.”
Again, I think the reference here is to the final regathering of Israel when the Lord establishes her as the glory among the nations and who becomes wealthy through the tribute of the nations.
Is. 14:2 And the people shall take them, and bring them to their place: and the house of Israel shall possess them in the land of the LORD for servants and handmaids: and they shall take them captives, whose captives they were; and they shall rule over their oppressors.
Is. 49:22 Thus saith the Lord GOD, Behold, I will lift up mine hand to the Gentiles, and set up my standard to the people: and they shall bring thy sons in their arms, and thy daughters shall be carried upon their shoulders.
Is. 49:23 And kings shall be thy nursing fathers, and their queens thy nursing mothers: they shall bow down to thee with their face toward the earth, and lick up the dust of thy feet; and thou shalt know that I am the LORD: for they shall not be ashamed that wait for me.
Is. 60:3 And the Gentiles shall come to thy light, and kings to the brightness of thy rising.
Is. 60:4 Lift up thine eyes round about, and see: all they gather themselves together, they come to thee: thy sons shall come from far, and thy daughters shall be nursed at thy side.
Is. 60:5 Then thou shalt see, and flow together, and thine heart shall fear, and be enlarged; because the abundance of the sea shall be converted unto thee, the forces of the Gentiles shall come unto thee.
Is. 60:6 The multitude of camels shall cover thee, the dromedaries of Midian and Ephah; all they from Sheba shall come: they shall bring gold and incense; and they shall shew forth the praises of the LORD.
Is. 60:7 All the flocks of Kedar shall be gathered together unto thee, the rams of Nebaioth shall minister unto thee: they shall come up with acceptance on mine altar, and I will glorify the house of my glory.
Is. 60:8 Who are these that fly as a cloud, and as the doves to their windows?
Is. 60:9 Surely the isles shall wait for me, and the ships of Tarshish first, to bring thy sons from far, their silver and their gold with them, unto the name of the LORD thy God, and to the Holy One of Israel, because he hath glorified thee.
Is. 60:14 The sons also of them that afflicted thee shall come bending unto thee; and all they that despised thee shall bow themselves down at the soles of thy feet; and they shall call thee, The city of the LORD, The Zion of the Holy One of Israel.
Is. 60:21 Thy people also shall be all righteous: they shall inherit the land for ever, the branch of my planting, the work of my hands, that I may be glorified.
Is. 60:22 A little one shall become a thousand, and a small one a strong nation: I the LORD will hasten it in his time.
These verses were too wonderful to leave out. God is not finished with Israel. No one can say that these words describe Israel at any time since this prophecy. This is a day yet future—a day when Jesus will rule on the throne of David as King of kings.