Summary: He has peace in Himself, and bestows it on His people.
Do you know what “Bethlehem” means? “The house of bread”.
Know what “Ephrathah” means? “Fruitful”
So from Bethlehem Ephrathah, comes the One whose body was broken for us (like the Passover bread), but Who was the firstfruits of the resurrection.
Isn’t God’s Word wonderful!?!?
As Micah comes to the ‘promise’ portion of his prophecy, he introduces a baby. He doesn’t say ‘baby’, but when someone ‘comes forth’ from an earthly location, they pretty much have to come forth as a baby.
But then he immediately establishes who this baby is.
“His goings forth are from long ago, from the days of eternity.”
Everyone knew who the prophet was talking about. There was never any doubt. Even the scribes of Herod’s day immediately quoted Micah 5:2 when Herod asked them where this ‘king’ could be found. (Matt. 2:5,6)
If Herod’s lackeys continued to read, then there is no wonder he was afraid of this infant of Bethlehem. Because without pausing to take a breath, Micah takes the reader from visions of the baby of Bethlehem to a picture of the Ancient of Days delivering and ruling over His people in strength and majesty; and ushering in the age of peace.
The prophet Micah talked about authority. He talked about the misuse of authority and pronounced the judgment that was to soon befall Samaria and Jerusalem, just as it had the Northern Kingdom, for the apostasy and idolatry, first of the rulers, and through them, the people.
He prophesied against the evil of the Rulers and the priests and the false prophets of Judea; then, in sharp contrast, he prophesied of the coming Messiah...the final authority...who would bring justice and victory and ultimate peace to the nation.
There is much to be studied in Micah; both in light of Israel’s history, and on a spiritual plane, what significance it has to today’s Israel and Christ’s church.
But here I want to focus solely on this One who, although “His goings forth are from long ago, from the days of eternity”, was to come out of this insignificant little hamlet of Bethlehem, and be known as the Shepherd of His flock, the Strength of the Lord, ...Our peace.
(Read Micah 5:2-15)
As I said, there is very much that can be studied and gleaned from Micah, and specifically from this chapter; but as we enter the Christmas season, I want to sharply focus on the things these verses in chapter 5 imply about Him who has peace in Himself, and bestows it on His people.
So here is how we will break it down. We will talk about Him as Our peace with God (vs. 5&6), then Our peace in the midst of strife (vs. 7-9) and finally, Our eternal peace (vs. 10-15)
First then, Christ, who is our peace with God. (again read 5 & 6)
The Assyrians from verse 5 are seen as representative of the nations, who throughout history have come against Israel, but specifically will unite against Israel at the end of the Great Tribulation. The Assyrians specifically are used because it is they who were against Israel at the time of Micah’s prophecy.
But the coming Messiah, symbolically represented by the “seven shepherds and eight leaders of men” (ref the numbers), will take the battle to them and defeat them on their own turf.
Nimrod is referred to in verse 6 because from Nimrod comes the uniting of the Assyrians and the Babylonians against God’s people.
But Nimrod is also a type of the spirit of anti-Christ, in his rising up against God and God’s people in a spiritual sense.
The Messiah will enter the territory of the enemy and triumph over him.
And we’ve seen that He has done just that, haven’t we believer?
Because of our apostasy and idolatry we were dead in our transgressions; justly placed under God’s wrath because of sin. All the forces of darkness in the spiritual realm were against us and master over us. We were bread for them.
“...when you were dead in your transgressions and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He made you alive together with Him; having forgiven us all our transgressions, having canceled out the certificate of debt consisting of decrees against us and which was hostile to us; and He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross.
When He had disarmed the rulers and authorities, He made a public display of them, having triumphed over them through Him.”
Christ is our peace with God, believer. He has entered enemy territory, apparently fooling them - being found in appearance as a man - into thinking He was weak and could be destroyed. But He brought the sword to them instead, and defeated them on their own turf. By the very means they sought to vanquish Him, He crushed the enemy’s head.