“He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the Lord require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?” (Micah 6:8).
[Thought questions for God’s Special People May 15, 2013]
1. Destructive judgment. Why were the prophets so distressed about the judgments of doom they were called to deliver? Is it possible to deliver God’s promises and His conclusions without feeling a sense of sorrow and bereavement? Do any of us suffer as the Old Testament prophets did in proclaiming God’s word? Why or why not?
2. Role models failed. Have you ever played an acting role in a play or drama of some kind? If so, do you remember how hard you worked to convey the feelings of the person you were portraying? Did Micah and the other “minor” prophets suffer from agony as they delivered grim messages from God? Do you and I feel pain in our souls when we see end time prophecies being fulfilled and too many of God’s people straying from His plan?
3. Devising iniquity. Did you take time to consider parallel reasoning between God’s people in the old Testament and today? Did (do) both groups of people consider themselves particularly wise? What is obedience? Define obedience to God and compare it with self-indulgence. What earnest plea did Micah make to his congregation regarding their children and future generations? Did they listen?
4. A new ruler. Did the entire Jewish nation ever give into total rebellion against God’s kingdom? Explain. How do you think Micah felt when he found out he had been chosen to announce the coming of the Redeemer to a dark and sin-soaked world? Between the cradle and the cross, what did Christ bestow upon the children of God who believed in Him?
5. The poetry of Micah 6. Did you notice how Micah’s short book rings out with poetry? Would you like to see selected sections of the book of Micah set to music with many harps and drums and fluted and brass instruments? Try imagining this book as a musical work. If you haven’t already done so, memorize Micah 6:8. Why should this short “sermon” bring special hope and joy to each of God’s children? Does this verse in anyway de-emphasize the Sabbath and other beliefs the Adventist church cherishes? Discuss.
6. No judgment? Have you ever been tempted to believe that God will save everyone? That every created human being will be transformed into a converted saint and live forever? In what ways does such a belief contradict the essence of the gospel? Our church makes extensive use of the word “hope” in our music and programs. Can we have the blessed hope if there is no judgment to eliminate sin? Do you or someone you know have a fear of the final judgment? How can Micah’s message help you deal with that fear?
7. Empty rituals. Do you ever visit another church that has more rituals and formalities than your own? Does the devil have a reason to promote an almost endless series of formalities in religious activity? Can even a solemn church service with marvelous music fail to turn our hearts into receptacles of God’s grace? Instead of ritualistic observance of programs and procedures, what does God want most of all in our hearts?