“‘Four’ For Us”
“(Four) For Us”
Micah 7: 14-20; Matthew 25:14-29
November 15, 2020
David Lee Hulsey
- Thank our youth
- Finishing our time at FPC
The prophet Micah active from 750 B.C. – 700 B.C.
Focused proclaiming God’s word to Judah, who at that time were being threatened by Assyria. Micah prophesied that Babylon, who at that time was under Assyrian rule, would conquer Judah. The book of Micah goes through cycles of beginning in doom and moving to hope. Micah always brings it back to God’s faithfulness and unchanging commitment to His people.
There are four things that I want you to walk away with from this passage today and I want you to repeat after me (startle whoever is working in the next room), repeat after me: Protect, Miracles, Delight, Show us.
Now, what you need to know about these four things… the first 3 God is taking care of, so you’re not doing the doing, you’re doing the receiving (Yay, that’s wonderful!). And the last one, all you’re doing… is asking for something. That’s it. Now the way Micah begins speaking in this passage is read as if he is asking for God to do something. But remember, Micah is a prophet, so remember that the words he is saying are prophecy. He is telling us what the Lord is going to do. He is letting the people know that God will do these things for His people. So let’s run through these four things for us.
Protect & Lead (v14)
“14 O Lord, protect your people with your shepherd’s staff; lead your flock, your special possession.”
We profess that Jesus Christ is the Good Shepherd, and a good shepherd protects and leads his flock. Are we trusting ourselves (our church) to our Shepherd? Are we looking for him to lead us in the direction that He is going, or are we too focused on where we’re going or would like to be going and getting lost from the flock?
Remember that God has promised to protect us and lead us to the fertile pastures (the good places). And we would be foolish to think that GETTING to those places would be a walk in the park. God’s people traversed through deserts, wilderness, banishment and exile, and in today’s time – a pandemic, hurricanes galore, political division, social unrest and injustice, and we’ve got Black Friday just around the corner. God has promised that He will protect and lead us through this to a good and better place. “(Four) For Us” Micah 7: 14-20; Matthew 25:14-29
Mighty Miracles for You (v15-17)
15 “Yes,” says the Lord, “I will do mighty miracles for you, like those I did when I rescued you from slavery in Egypt.”
God had to remind Israel of the miracles he did for them in the past: parting the sea, water springing from a rock, manna in the wilderness, and what encompassed all those miracles is the miracle that God rescued His entire people from slavery. And when Christ came to earth, we have the stories of his miracles: water to wine, feeding the 5,000, sight to the blind, healing the sick, walking on water, and finally dying then rising up and conquering death to rescue His people from being enslaved by sin and death.
Yes, God still does miracles for us today. But I hope we’re not only looking for the big flashy kind because that means we might be missing the subtle ones around us. A miracle isn’t something extraordinary that benefits only me, but is defined as a surprising and welcome event that you cannot explain and is therefore considered to be the work of the divine. Some small miracles I’ve considered lately are getting to raise my children up in this church family, seeing the smile on my daughter’s face, or my son squeezing my hand and saying, “I love you, Daddy.” God gives us those small, but just as mighty miracles, to remind us that He has rescued us from all the self-centered, cruel, divisive, and destructive tactics of the enemy who would falsely lead us to believe that we are not loved by God and we do not belong to God. The Lord continues to do mighty miracles for you.
Delight (in Showing Unfailing Love) (v18-19)
Sometimes we may fall into this dangerous trap of falsely thinking that God delights in showing us where we have done wrong, where we have failed, how imperfect or off the mark we are. But that is a lie that only Satan would delight in. The truth is that the Lord delights in showing unfailing love. Verses 18 & 19 spell it out for us. “18 Where is another God like you, (Micah’s name) who pardons the guilt of the remnant, overlooking the sins of his special people? You will not stay angry with your people forever, because you delight in showing unfailing love. 19 Once again you will have compassion on us. You will trample our sins under your feet and throw them into the depths of the ocean!
God is saying, “I find joy in loving you, and in showing you that, not matter what you do, I will still love you so much that I will separate and take away your sins, stamp on them, and throw them away where they will be destroyed and never seen again. And I will do it every time.” That is unfailing love.
“Show Us!” (v20)
Last one, and remember that this one is our action item. We are to say to God, “show us.” “20 You will show us your faithfulness and unfailing love as you promised to our ancestors Abraham and Jacob long ago.” What we need to do at every opportunity, before we even do anything (before we ask for guidance, before we share our concerns, or bring our mistakes before the Lord), we ask, “Show us your faithfulness and unfailing love.”
This puts us in a ready position to see, react, and engage with what God is doing. The Lord acts first, and we get to respond. We get to see how He has protected and led us. We are primed and ready to see what mighty miracles is God doing for us. We get to see how God delights in showing that unfailing love.
Story – My first car accident
16 years old, had my license for 3 months. Mom was out of town, brother was staying with a friend, and I was staying with my best friend (whose house was right behind my house).
But why walk 20 feet when you could drive!
After school, I drove over to my friend’s house to pick him up, but when we backed out of the driveway I hit the neighbor’s truck and busted my left tail light. We panicked, saw that it didn’t do anything to the truck, so we drove off… all the way to my house (we were rattled a bit).
Just as we’re walking into my house, my friend’s mom and dad drive by, tell us dinner will be at 6… and what happened to your car? “Ugh, I don’t know, must have been a hit and run.” “OK”
They drive off to their house, my friend and I go inside unsure of what to do. Less than 10 minutes later, his dad comes straight into the house, right up to me and says, “What happened?” I spilled the beans! “Get in the car.”
The ride over, I realized… sheriffs department… interrogation…
“Call your mother”… “Is Paul handling it?” Yes! “Ok, love you. Bye!”
“You’re grounded” To my house?
I thought I’d ruined everything. Plans with friends, my car, and my best friend’s parents must hate me.
The rest of the weekend was really great. Paul was there with me when the police came to file a report, the neighbor came out to apologize for what his truck had done to my car, and I spent the rest of the time hanging out with my best friend’s family (whom I, to this day, still love dearly).
At the end of the weekend, Paul asked me how I was doing. I said, “I thought after all that’s happened, you’d hate me.” Paul told me, “No, you’re a part of this family. And I need you to trust that my actions will show you that I love you.” “(Four) For Us” Micah 7: 14-20; Matthew 25:14-29
He set a great example by protecting and leading me, by showing me what small but mighty miracles can look like, and I could see the delight on his face when his actions were out of love. He showed me what unfailing love could look like. And that gave me a glimpse of who God is.
There’s one more thing I want you to realize that comes from these four things for us. Yes, we are blessed and reminded that we belong to God and that God loves us. And by recognizing that in our lives, it becomes evident to the lives of others. So let our lives be the testimony to God’s unfailing love.
Verse 16: “Let the nations of the world stand amazed at what the Lord will do for you.”