Summary: All of us want to please God. No greater joy is there than to know that you are a pleasing vessel unto the Lord. What does it take to please God?
Introduction: As a contemporary of Isaiah, Micah was born in Judah and prophesied in Jerusalem.
Micah was a country preacher, he was poor and he spoke to the poor or common person.
After sharing the prophecy concerning the birthplace of the Messiah (Micah 5:2), Micah now shares with the people about becoming someone God is pleased with.
Although many people believe that various offerings with calves of a year (vs. 6), the number of offerings made, giving your child or the fruit of your body as an offering, and even massive anointing services are pleasing to God (vs. 7), yet, Micah would dispel these teachings and share what it takes to please God (vs. 8).
What does God want in order to please Him?
1. God Wants A Person Willing To Do Right In A World Choosing To Do Wrong (vs. 8).
A. Acting justly means that you are fair, honest, and full of integrity.
B. A good example of a person of this stature was Job. He was known as being fair, honest, and full of integrity. So much was his testimony valued that even God challenged Satan to shake this man's faith. As we all know, Satan could not break Job's faithfulness to God, and Job maintained his integrity through a series of calamities (Job 1).
C. The person who would be defined as doing that which is right by God is a person who doesn't simply act right outwardly, but one who is committed to God inwardly. David wrote in Psalm 51:6, "Behold, thou desirest truth in the inward parts: and in the hidden part thou shalt make me to know wisdom."
D. Salvation comes from a change from within, so also inwardly, the true person is revealed. The man, thus, who would please God, must be full of integrity (Hebrews 10:22), one who does not waiver from his faith (Hebrews 10:23), and one who wants others to choose to follow God also (Hebrews 10:24).
2. God Wants A Person Who Loves Mercy. (vs. 8).
A. It is clear that God needs people who are compassionate, and who show kindness toward others. Jesus said in Matthew 5:43-45, the natural man teaches us to love our neighbors, but hate our enemies. Jesus teaches us differently. Rather than hate He teaches us to love our enemies, bless those who curse us, do good to them that hate us, pray for them which use us, and persecute us. The reason we do this is because we are the children of God.
B. Paul told the Romans in Romans 12:1-2, "I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God." In order to love mercy, you must be totally dedicated to the God of mercy.
C. Paul later told the Romans in Romans 12:17-21, "Recompense to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest in the sight of all men. If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men. Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord. Therefore if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing thou shalt heap coals of fire on his head. Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good." Paul recognized that being the type of sacrifice we should be to please God, is not one defined by man, which was animal sacrifice, but by God, a living sacrifice. Showing love, care, compassion, kindness, and longsuffering even to our enemies.
D. Remember Jesus said, in Matthew 5:7, "Blessed are the merciful; for they shall obtain mercy." Every one should examine their heart, are they capable of caring for others? The answer will determine if you meet the definition of the merciful that God is please with in our text. Mercy, by the way, is defined as God not giving us what we deserve. If we got what we deserved, we should all be cast into hell, but God gives us something else, Himself as our refuge. Thus, we should treat others with a compassion, that does not measure up to their treatment of us, but that should measure up to God's standard of acceptance.
3. God Wants A Person Who Will Walk Humbly With Him. (vs. 8).
A. Paul wrote to the Romans in Romans 3:10-18, that there are many reasons why God would declare, "...all have sinned, and come short of His glory." (Romans 3:23). Each of the reasons that God gave, reveal man in his pride, puffed up, being led by his lusts, and not led by the Spirit of God.