Studies

Habakkuk Part 4 – Five Woes unto the Proud Man

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“Five Woes unto the Proud Man”

Key Verses:  Hab 2:6 – 2:11

The Lord has extolled us to walk by faith in preparing us for what lies ahead on our journey to redemption. We are being justified, we are being made righteous by enduring through the day of evil that is now upon the house of God.

Mat 6:34 Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.

The Lord continues to answer Habakkuk’s complaint in providing more details of the vision that is the end of the carnal age, an appointed time for each man. This time is defined by us living through the five woes here in Habakkuk. Like the three woes of Revelation, this is the time of the revealing of Jesus Christ in us who has come to save His people from their sins. Each of the woes are teaching us obedience and demonstrating the power, the doing of the Word of God. Thank God for these wonderful works of the Lord to His children.

1Co 4:20 For the kingdom of God is not in word, but in power. 

The Lord continues rebuking the prideful man of sin within us who has taken His wine, misuses the vessels of the temple in seeking gain, and making merchandise with the Babylonian harlot. A new wine vessel needs to be made and is being made in the Potter’s fiery furnace (Isa 48:10) as we progress through these five (grace thru faith) woes.

Hab 2:5 Yea also, because he transgresseth by wine, he is a proud man, neither keepeth at home, who enlargeth his desire as hell, and is as death, and cannot be satisfied, but gathereth unto him all nations, and heapeth unto him all people:

Hab 2:6 Shall not all these take up a parable against him, and a taunting proverb against him, and say, Woe to him that increaseth that which is not his! how long? and to him that ladeth himself with thick clay! 

Hab 2:7 Shall they not rise up suddenly that shall bite thee, and awake that shall vex thee, and thou shalt be for booties unto them? 

Hab 2:8 Because thou hast spoiled many nations, all the remnant of the people shall spoil thee; because of men’s blood, and for the violence of the land, of the city, and of all that dwell therein. 

Hab 2:9 Woe to him that coveteth an evil covetousness to his house, that he may set his nest on high, that he may be delivered from the power of evil! 

Hab 2:10 Thou hast consulted shame to thy house by cutting off many people, and hast sinned against thy soul. 

Hab 2:11 For the stone shall cry out of the wall, and the beam out of the timber shall answer it. 

An important lesson or takeaway in these five woes relates to who it is that brings the wrath and judgment of the Lord? Who is it who speaks the words of fire that judge all men in the “last days”?  It is the elect, The Christ of Christ who speaks the Word that feed the flock of God and bringing healing for the new man and destruction for the old.

Jer 5:14 Wherefore thus saith the LORD God of hosts, Because ye speak this word, behold, I will make my words in thy mouth fire, and this people wood, and it shall devour them.

Eze 34:15 I will feed my flock, and I will cause them to lie down, saith the Lord GOD.

Eze 34:16 I will seek that which was lost, and bring again that which was driven away, and will bind up that which was broken, and will strengthen that which was sick: but I will destroy the fat and the strong; I will feed them with judgment.

We will see the words “holy remnant” and other symbolism for the elect in each of these woes. The Lord’s instruments are who bring the fire that spoils the heathen nations and brings salvation.

Oba 1:21 And saviours shall come up on mount Zion to judge the mount of Esau; and the kingdom shall be the LORD’S.

Rev 14:19 And the angel thrust in his sickle into the earth, and gathered the vine of the earth, and cast it into the great winepress of the wrath of God

Who are the ministers of the Lord’s grace? It is God’s chosen few, His Body, who judge ourselves now and the world in the ages to come (1Co 11:31-32).

Heb 1:7 And of the angels he saith, Who maketh his angels spirits, and his ministers a flame of fire. 

1Pe 4:10 As every man hath received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.

This grace is what chastens us and teaches us righteousness, causing us to obey God as we mature. Thus, judgment must begin at the Body of Christ (1Pe 4:17), so we can in turn become the righteous judges of all men (Mat 19:28).

1Co 6:2 Do ye not know that the saints shall judge the world? and if the world shall be judged by you, are ye unworthy to judge the smallest matters?

Jesus Christ is the Saviour of the whole world and all mankind. Yet that work, the greater work of salvation from sin is done through His people. As He is so is His Christ (Joh 20:21) that He has chosen and sends forth (1Jo 4:17). The symbolism of words in the Bible that signify the Body of Christ, is a long list. We will look at these symbols of the hidden “saviours” as we detail each of the five woes.

Hab 2:6 Shall not all these take up a parable against him, and a taunting proverb against him, and say, Woe to him that increaseth that which is not his! how long? and to him that ladeth himself with thick clay!

Hab 2:7 Shall they not rise up suddenly that shall bite thee, and awake that shall vex thee, and thou shalt be for booties unto them?

Hab 2:8 Because thou hast spoiled many nations, all the remnant of the people shall spoil thee; because of men’s blood, and for the violence of the land, of the city, and of all that dwell therein.

The Lord’s words are both a parable and a “taunting” proverb to our man of sin in the day those words are heard and understood. The words of truth are always spoken in parables (Mat 13:9, Hos 12:10) and they bring about the destruction of the old man as we hear them and grow in understanding. The word translated as “taunting” is only used one other time in Scripture.

H4426, melı̂ytsâh  – Total KJV Occurrences: 2

interpretation, 1 Pro_1:6

taunting, 1 Hab_2:6 (2)

A taunting proverb is one which taunts the old man as we grow in our understanding. As we grow in knowledge of the truth, the old man is being reproved and rebuked by the Word.

Pro 1:5 A wise man will hear, and will increase learning; and a man of understanding shall attain unto wise counsels:

Pro 1:6 To understand a proverb, and the interpretation [H4426]; the words of the wise, and their dark sayings.

The new man within us hear these words and are being convicted and washed clean by the resulting trials and judgment. That is “reasoning” together in the Body of Christ.

2Ti 4:2 Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.

Isa 1:18” Come now, and let us reason together,” Says the LORD, “Though your sins are like scarlet, They shall be as white as snow; Though they are red like crimson, They shall be as wool.

Jesus Christ came to serve and not to be served. As His Christ that is our mission as well yet we need to be made into servants and be purged of the SELF and self-righteousness that defines us hearing but not yet doing the Word. Until we truly are dying on a cross we are not serving, we are just borrowers who are building up usury that will be demanded of us.

Rom 12:1 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.

Mar 10:44 And whosoever of you will be the chiefest, shall be servant of all.

Mar 10:45 For even the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.

Luk 17:10 So likewise you, when you have done all those things which you are commanded, say, ‘We are unprofitable servants. We have done what was our duty to do.’

Seeking the gain and riches of this world is seeking to increase what is not ours. It all belongs to the Lord but until we are humbled by many trials, we instinctively as brute beasts seek gain from our service. Such is the way of Core, Balaam et. al.

Jud 1:11 Woe unto them! for they have gone in the way of Cain, and ran greedily after the error of Balaam for reward, and perished in the gainsaying of Core.

Jud 1:12 These are spots in your feasts of charity, when they feast with you, feeding themselves without fear: clouds they are without water, carried about of winds; trees whose fruit withereth, without fruit, twice dead, plucked up by the roots;

Jud 1:13 Raging waves of the sea, foaming out their own shame; wandering stars, to whom is reserved the blackness of darkness forever.

The gain/rewards flesh seeks is far more than money, it is the mammon of self-righteousness. Before fire is poured out, our flesh cannot help but laden ourselves with what the translators called thick clay.

H5671, ‛abṭı̂yṭ, ab-teet’

From H5670; something pledged, that is, (collectively) pawned goods. (thick clay is by a false etym.): – thick clay [by a false etymology].

Total KJV Occurrences: 1

clay, 1  Hab_2:6

Looking at the root word and the way most other translations show the verses help give a clearer meaning.

H5670, ‛âbaṭ, aw-bat’

A primitive root; to pawn; causatively to lend (on security); figuratively to entangle: – borrow, break [ranks], fetch [a pledge], lend, X surely.

Here is the NKJV which agrees with nearly all the major translations in linking the proud man to spiritual lending and usury.

Hab 2:6 NKJV “Will not all these take up a proverb against him, And a taunting riddle against him, and say, ‘Woe to him who increases What is not his—how long? And to him who loads himself with many pledges’? 

Hab 2:7 NKJV Will not your creditors rise up suddenly? Will they not awaken who oppress you? And you will become their booty.

These verses are speaking about our service and how we are to give of ourselves selflessly. Shakespeare had it kind of right with his famous quip “neither a borrower or a lender be”.  The Lord’s people are not to be lending with interest (expecting gain – USURY) or borrowing in the spiritual.

Deu 15:6 For the LORD thy God blesseth thee, as he promised thee: and thou shalt lend [H5670] unto many nations, but thou shalt not borrow [H5670]; and thou shalt reign over many nations, but they shall not reign over thee. 

We have this witness that makes clear that lending is of the treasures in heaven, the rain, the true doctrines that only those blessed and judged in this life are given.

Deu 28:12 The LORD shall open unto thee his good treasure, the heaven to give the rain unto thy land in his season, and to bless all the work of thine hand: and thou shalt lend unto many nations, and thou shalt not borrow. 

But our giving (lending) is always to be without gain.

Exo 22:25 If thou lend money to any of my people that is poor by thee, thou shalt not be to him as an usurer (gain/interest) neither shalt thou lay upon him usury (interest/gain). 

Mat 10:8 Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely ye have received, freely give.

Our breaking bread and sharing the truth of God’s word is NEVER to be for any gain of any kind. Freely we shall give what has been given to us.

Luk 14:12 Then said he also to him that bade him, When thou makest a dinner or a supper, call not thy friends, nor thy brethren, neither thy kinsmen, nor thy rich neighbours; lest they also bid thee again, and a recompence be made thee.

Luk 14:13 But when thou makest a feast, call the poor, the maimed, the lame, the blind:

Usury is interest/profit and it is what carnal minded lenders are seeking from borrowers.

H5391, nâshak

Total KJV Occurrences: 20

bite, 6

Ecc_10:8, Ecc_10:11, Jer_8:17, Amo_9:3, Mic_3:5, Hab_2:7

usury, 4

lend, 3

bit, 2

biteth, 2

bitten, 2

We will reap what we sow.  When we demand usury (gain/profit) we ourselves will be bitten back.  The old man will be vexed, bitten and spoiled by the coming of Christ with zeal to cleanse His temple within us.

Joh 2:15  And when he had made a scourge of small cords, he drove them all out of the temple, and the sheep, and the oxen; and poured out the changers’ money, and overthrew the tables;

Joh 2:16  And said unto them that sold doves, Take these things hence; make not my Father’s house an house of merchandise.

The Lord’s people are not to seek usury. What is owed to Jesus Christ is our entire life, our reasonable service. When Christ comes inwardly, the debt becomes due and suddenly the Chaldean spoilers will now be plundered and their booty captured. All the land within and without belongs to the Lord. We are not our own, we have been bought with a price (1Co 6:20). Our service, the giving of our life, is never for fleshly gain and reward.

Luk 6:35 But love ye your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again; and your reward shall be great, and ye shall be the children of the Highest: for he is kind unto the unthankful and to the evil.

1Co 10:26 For the earth is the Lord’s, and the fulness thereof.

The immovable man standing on the ROCK is one who does not seek gain or take rewards against the needy.

Psa 15:5 He that putteth not out his money to usury, nor taketh reward against the innocent. He that doeth these things shall never be moved.

Tony Psalm 15 Part 1 study (CLICK HERE) covered usury and service very well where he wrote this summary: “The body of Christ is here to help each other, by bearing each other’s burdens and so fulfill the law of Christ, and it is these actions that justify us (Gal 6:2, Tit 3:8, Rom 2:13). We are called to lose our life for one another (Mat 16:25, Mat 7:14) and therefore we would never put out our money to usury, to collect interest against a brother, to “putteth not out his money to usury”. Symbolically this ‘not putting out our money to usury’ is telling us to owe no man anything but love” (Rom 13:8).   

Eze 18:8 He that hath not given forth upon usury, neither hath taken any increase, that hath withdrawn his hand from iniquity, hath executed true judgment between man and man,

Eze 18:9 Hath walked in my statutes, and hath kept my judgments, to deal truly; he is just, he shall surely live, saith the Lord GOD.

The holy remnant of the people, save God’s people from their enemies and spoil the booty and goods of the harlot and the beast. It takes the coming of one stronger, Jesus Christ and His Christ, to spoil the man of sin’s house (Mat 12:29). The Lord both creates our enemies and then delivers us from them. He does all these things in saving us and teaching us.

Neh 9:27 Therefore thou deliveredst them into the hand of their enemies, who vexed them: and in the time of their trouble, when they cried unto thee, thou heardest them from heaven; and according to thy manifold mercies thou gavest them saviours, who saved them out of the hand of their enemies. 

Ancient Israel learning was for our admonition and they learned this looking behind themselves and coming to see that the people of God are like their Lord – SERVANTS

Neh 9:36 Behold, we are servants this day, and for the land that thou gavest unto our fathers to eat the fruit thereof and the good thereof, behold, we are servants in it: 

This of course is within us but also without us as we abide here in these temporary clay vessels in the fire that is the living Word that is the Body in which God dwells. Christ is the door and if we are in Christ, we are both the door and shepherds of the sheep who are feeding the flock. We feed each other words of fire that are spiritual nourishment saves us by judgment.

Joh 10:2 But he that entereth in by the door is the shepherd of the sheep.

Jer 23:4 And I will set up shepherds over them which shall feed them: and they shall fear no more, nor be dismayed, neither shall they be lacking, saith the LORD.

Jer 23:5 Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will raise unto David a righteous Branch, and a King shall reign and prosper, and shall execute judgment and justice in the earth.

The next pronouncement of woe is for our coveting evil by exalting ourselves in wanting to be seen and thinking such outward service delivers us from evil and allows us to escape the judgments of God.

Hab 2:9 Woe to him that coveteth an evil covetousness to his house, that he may set his nest on high, that he may be delivered from the power of evil!

Hab 2:10 Thou hast consulted shame to thy house by cutting off many people, and hast sinned against thy soul.

Hab 2:11 For the stone shall cry out of the wall, and the beam out of the timber shall answer it.

Again, we see the Lord’s jealousy of not sharing His glory with another (Isa 42:8). Seeking gain of any kind from our service and knowledge of God is our coveting and evil covetousness (gain). This is what all beasts instinctively do in our self-righteousness state. Thus, the need for judgment for our sins (Ecc 1:13 CLV) that will humble us and lead us to repentance.

Oba 1:3 The pride of thine heart hath deceived thee, thou that dwellest in the clefts of the rock, whose habitation is high; that saith in his heart, Who shall bring me down to the ground?

Rev 18:7 How much she hath glorified herself, and lived deliciously, so much torment and sorrow give her: for she saith in her heart, I sit a queen, and am no widow, and shall see no sorrow. 

Running ahead of God and not waiting on Him to exalt us, we will exalt ourselves as we become drunk with knowledge (Isa 28:1) and are thinking too highly of ourselves. Being scourged by grace (Heb 12:6) is serving its purpose in bringing us down.

Rom 12:3 For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.

When it’s about us and our gain; we bring shame upon our house as we sin against The Lord and His Christ. The pride of the carnal mind leads us to take a more prominent seat than we ought. Yet the Lord has ways of manifesting things (even evil) in our hearts to humble us and move us back to where we need to be.

Luk 14:8 When thou art bidden of any man to a wedding, sit not down in the highest room; lest a more honourable man than thou be bidden of him;

Luk 14:9 And he that bade thee and him come and say to thee, Give this man place; and thou begin with shame to take the lowest room.

Luk 14:10 But when thou art bidden, go and sit down in the lowest room; that when he that bade thee cometh, he may say unto thee, Friend, go up higher: then shalt thou have worship in the presence of them that sit at meat with thee.

Luk 14:11 For whosoever exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.

We are ashamed before we learn to wait and trust that the Lord knows what He is doing and rest from our own works. Then we shall wait and not be ashamed any more (Psa 25:3). When we seek gain from our brothers we are oppressing them spiritually by not being Christ and giving all as a servant. This innate greediness takes away and robs our spiritual life.

Pro 1:19 So are the ways of every one that is greedy of gain; which taketh away the life of the owners thereof.

Pro 15:27 He that is greedy of gain troubleth his own house; but he that hateth gifts shall live.

Godliness with contentment is the real gain we seek. These fleshly lusts of pride and honors of carnal men must be given up becoming servants.

Jas 4:13 Go to now, ye that say, Today or tomorrow we will go into such a city, and continue there a year, and buy and sell, and get gain:

The stone out of the wall and the beam out of the timber is symbolism for God’s elect and Jesus Christ within us who is standing for righteousness and against the evil nations within and without. The Body of Christ are the lively stones (1Pe 2:15) that make up the city and its walls that protect the flock of God and insulate from the enemies of God.

The word for beam [H3714] is only found once in the bible and is from an unused root that means a girder or connector. A beam is what connects and supports the timbers and walls of a house and that is very true in the spirit (Rom 1:20). Remembering that all men are trees (Mar 8:24) helps us see that this beam that answers the wickedness within is Christ in us. Christ via His Spirit is this beam, the very thing that connects us spiritually and together is holding us up in righteousness in the war against heathens.

The Lord foretold of the crying out of His elect against the wickedness of Israel when He foretold this parable when rebuking proud Pharisees who wanted to silence the Lord’s praise.

Luk 19:37 And when he was come nigh, even now at the descent of the mount of Olives, the whole multitude of the disciples began to rejoice and praise God with a loud voice for all the mighty works that they had seen;

Luk 19:38 Saying, Blessed be the King that cometh in the name of the Lord: peace in heaven, and glory in the highest.

Luk 19:39 And some of the Pharisees from among the multitude said unto him, Master, rebuke thy disciples.

Luk 19:40 And he answered and said unto them, I tell you that, if these should hold their peace, the stones would immediately cry out.

The fulfillment of the crying out of Christ was instant. When Christ comes to us and enters into His temple, the Spirit in us will begin to cry and sigh over all the abominations committed. Those that buy and sell for gain will be cast out in our day of the Lord.

Luk 19:41 And when he was come near, he beheld the city, and wept over it …..

Luk 19:45 And he went into the temple, and began to cast out them that sold therein, and them that bought; 

Eze 9:4 And the LORD said unto him, Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem, and set a mark upon the foreheads of the men that sigh and that cry for all the abominations that be done in the midst thereof.

The fruits of the spirit (Gal 5:22-24) manifest in due time as we mature. Yet we are reminded to fight the way and take captive thoughts and strive against seeking vain glory and being envious of each other.

Gal 5:26 Let us not be desirous of vain glory, provoking one another, envying one another.

Jer 9:23 Thus saith the LORD, Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty man glory in his might, let not the rich man glory in his riches:

Jer 9:24 But let him that glorieth glory in this, that he understandeth and knoweth me, that I am the LORD which exercise lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness, in the earth: for in these things I delight, saith the LORD.

As we move into the third woe we should see a developing theme. Our own works will not justify us (Gal 2:16) and this is one of the last things to be burned out of us in our day of the Lord. The true elect that is being found faithful are being circumcised and will be found with no confidence in their flesh or anyone else’s (Phi 3:3). Those being made righteous shall walk by faith in God and not in ourselves. We are learning to come towards the fire as we grow.

Heb 4:16 Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.

Sincere questions and comments are always welcome. You can also email me directly at peterjwilson56@gmail.com

Studies

Micah Part 12 – Cast Out into Outer Darkness

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Cast Out Into Outer Darkness

Key Verses: Micah 3:6 – 3:12

In our last study of Micah, we saw a continuation of our rebellion to the narrow way of the Lord.  This was manifest in our partaking at His feast in an unworthy manner.  We need to learn how to feast in the kingdom of God the proper narrow way and get beyond our lusting after gain.  Arriving in the Truth begins the process and it never ends and we need to be watchful that we not begin biting and devouring our brothers seeking gain (usury) and preeminence.  This is not what the law of Faith commands.

Gal 5:14 For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.

Gal 5:15 But if ye bite and devour one another, take heed that ye be not consumed one of another.

Eating unworthily brings the vengeance of the Lord in its appointed time to teach us the right way.  He is burning disobedience out of us by the fire of His judgment that is revealing the glory of the Lord (Jesus Christ/the Word) working within us.

1Pe 4:13 But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ’s sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy.

Let’s move on and see the Lord’s purpose in forsaking His people for a little while by turning our light into darkness.  Here are the verses for today that will complete Chapter 3.

Mic 3:6 Therefore night shall be unto you, that ye shall not have a vision; and it shall be dark unto you, that ye shall not divine; and the sun shall go down over the prophets, and the day shall be dark over them.

Mic 3:7 Then shall the seers be ashamed, and the diviners confounded: yea, they shall all cover their lips; for there is no answer of God.

Mic 3:8 But truly I am full of power by the spirit of the LORD, and of judgment, and of might, to declare unto Jacob his transgression, and to Israel his sin.

Mic 3:9 Hear this, I pray you, ye heads of the house of Jacob, and princes of the house of Israel, that abhor judgment, and pervert all equity.

Mic 3:10 They build up Zion with blood, and Jerusalem with iniquity.

Mic 3:11 The heads thereof judge for reward, and the priests thereof teach for hire, and the prophets thereof divine for money: yet will they lean upon the LORD, and say, Is not the LORD among us? none evil can come upon us.

Mic 3:12 Therefore shall Zion for your sake be plowed as a field, and Jerusalem shall become heaps, and the mountain of the house as the high places of the forest.

When we come to the wedding feast, ill prepared with undisciplined eating habits and not properly dressed we are cast out into outer darkness (Mat 22:14).  This is a time of separation from the Lord because of our sins.  Part of learning requires us to fall away into destruction and then be turned back by the hand of the Lord (Psa 90:3).  Our day of the Lord and the completion of our baptism by fire will not come until we first fall away and judgment is later brought to the Gentile nations within us.  We try to serve two masters before we are taught we can only serve one.  A double minded man and spiritual harlot can expect to receive nothing from the Lord but more judgment.

Jos 24:20 If ye forsake the LORD, and serve strange gods, then he will turn and do you hurt, and consume you, after that he hath done you good.

This falling away (forsaking the Lord) precedes the Lord and His glory being revealed.  The Lord most assuredly is faithful to the new man who shall bear His image and glory.  Yet the Lord will forsake us for a little while to teach us obedience through suffering (Heb 5:8).  If we seek Him with all our hearts, we are finding Him (Jer 29:13), but if we forsake Him, He is forsaking us.

2Ch 15:2 And he went out to meet Asa, and said unto him, Hear ye me, Asa, and all Judah and Benjamin; The LORD is with you, while ye be with him; and if ye seek him, he will be found of you; but if ye forsake him, he will forsake you

The Lord sends His plagues including fire and brimstone on the land within for judgment.  This is promised when we have forsaken the Lord even after seeing many miracles and having been given many great deliverances in being dragged out of the world (Egypt).

Deu 29:25 Then men shall say, Because they have forsaken the covenant of the LORD God of their fathers, which he made with them when he brought them forth out of the land of Egypt:

Deu 29:26 For they went and served other gods, and worshipped them, gods whom they knew not, and whom he had not given unto them:

The righteous man, Jesus Christ, within us will never be forsaken even though it will feel like it as we endure our suffering and trials in the flesh.

Mat 27:46 And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?

2Co 4:9 Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed;

Isa 62:12 And they shall call them, The holy people, The redeemed of the LORD: and thou shalt be called, Sought out, A city not forsaken.

Working righteousness in us by judgment requires the forsaking of the old man who must die for the new man to come forth.  Let’s look further at the specific verses.

Mic 3:6 Therefore night shall be unto you, that ye shall not have a vision; and it shall be dark unto you, that ye shall not divine; and the sun shall go down over the prophets, and the day shall be dark over them.

Mic 3:7 Then shall the seers be ashamed, and the diviners confounded: yea, they shall all cover their lips; for there is no answer of God.

It His Elect, the very children of the Kingdom, who are the first to be cast into outer darkness.  Here there is weeping and gnashing of teeth as we cry out to save the flesh and endure judgments against our carnal way of life.  Being bound hand and foot we remain slaves to sin until the Lord comes the second time for salvation.  It is the chosen few who are first to show up to the feast without a proper garment.  “We are that man” as we eat and drink and feast in the kingdom of God yet unworthily.  As the first to be judged, whose lake of fire is now, we are bearing many stripes for having been given so much of God’s treasures.  We are seeing the shame of our nakedness and having our carnal wisdom confounded.

Mat 8:12 But the children of the kingdom shall be cast out into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.

Psa 70:2 Let them be ashamed and confounded that seek after my soul: let them be turned backward, and put to confusion, that desire my hurt.

It is the Lord’s will to sanctify us and destroy that marred vessel of clay.  Being cast out into outer darkness with no vision, in strong delusion, serves to bring about the end of the old way of life “is, was and will be”.

Lam 2:8 The LORD hath purposed to destroy the wall of the daughter of Zion: he hath stretched out a line, he hath not withdrawn his hand from destroying: therefore he made the rampart and the wall to lament; they languished together.

Lam 2:9 Her gates are sunk into the ground; he hath destroyed and broken her bars: her king and her princes are among the Gentiles: the law is no more; her prophets also find no vision from the LORD.

The way we are brought into a Covenant with the Lord is by living through these seasons in our life.  It is necessary to humble us and make us pliable to be reshaped from our hardened condition of our sinful hearts.  A “deep sleep” symbolizing “death” fell upon Adam (Gen 2:21)  and Abraham (Gen 15:12) being a shadow of our process of spiritual completion.

We are the children of the kingdom who are doing this wickedness after having the Truth.  It is the elect who are these blind servants that will bear the shame our wickedness.

Isa 42:17 They shall be turned back, they shall be greatly ashamed, that trust in graven images, that say to the molten images, Ye are our gods.

Isa 42:18 Hear, ye deaf; and look, ye blind, that ye may see.

Isa 42:19 Who is blind, but my servant? or deaf, as my messenger that I sent? who is blind as he that is perfect, and blind as the LORD’S servant?

The repeating theme of judgment, the ongoing winnowing, cutting off and bringing the third part through the fire, “is, was and will be” occurring in our lives so long as we are in clay vessels.  Living by every word includes being a false prophet like Bar Jesus who uses the wiles of our carnal father the devil to pervert the straight and narrow ways of the Lord.  This is what we do when we reason with the wisdom of the world and the carnal mind.

Act 13:10 And said, O full of all subtilty and all mischief, thou child of the devil, thou enemy of all righteousness, wilt thou not cease to pervert the right ways of the Lord?

When the Lord puts His hands on us through the spoken Word we are being blind for a time and that is to judge and humble us.

Act 13:11 And now, behold, the hand of the Lord is upon thee, and thou shalt be blind, not seeing the sun for a season. And immediately there fell on him a mist and a darkness; and he went about seeking some to lead him by the hand.

The Bar [H1247] in Bar Jesus (Act 13:6) links back to Chaldea which is the land of the carnal mind, the land of UR from whence Abraham was told to depart.  Like Paul, all of the Lord’s true disciples are commissioned for the same reason which is to open the eyes of the blind that they may receive the gift of God.  We first are blind and given to not eat or drink anything for “three days” before we are given to see.  This signifying how we are continually brought to spiritual completion (the meaning of the number three) via progressive judgments.

Act 9:9 And he (Saul) was three days without sight, and neither did eat nor drink.

Jesus Christ has come into the world to bring judgment by the Word that “The Christ” speaks to those prepared to hear it.

Act 26:18 To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me.

Joh 9:39 And Jesus said, For judgment I am come into this world, that they which see not might see; and that they which see might be made blind.

Famine of the Word is also a type of darkness.  Our time of confusion, being confounded and ashamed is all the Lord’s work and the trial of our faith is how we are clothed in true righteousness.

Amo 8:11 Behold, the days come, saith the Lord GOD, that I will send a famine in the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the LORD:

Amo 8:12 And they shall wander from sea to sea, and from the north even to the east, they shall run to and fro to seek the word of the LORD, and shall not find it.

It pleases the Father to bruise us, His sons, for a time and seasons.  This affliction from the rod is how we learn righteousness in the same way a child is disciplined.

Lam 3:1 I am the man that hath seen affliction by the rod of his wrath.

Lam 3:2 He hath led me, and brought me into darkness, but not into light.

Here is an OT witness to Hebrews 12:6 and the scourging grace of a loving Father,

Pro 13:24 He that spareth his rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him chasteneth him betimes.

The wisdom of the wise in the flesh, is continually being confounded (1 Co 1:27).  Abiding in outer darkness is how the flesh is brought to its wits end.  Where there is light there is still hope but we have to lose all hope and confidence in the flesh (Phi 3:3) to stand firmly in faith.  Hence the purpose for the season of darkness to tear down those fleshly strongholds.  When the going gets tough and we pray amiss to keep the flesh alive, the Lord will not hear us and this works righteousness in us as foolish as that sound to the natural man.

Lam 3:7 He hath hedged me about, that I cannot get out: he hath made my chain heavy.

Lam 3:8 Also when I cry and shout, he shutteth out my prayer.

The only way to have our shame covered once we are shown it, is to “buy gold tried in the fire” from the Master Refiner as we see in many Scriptures (Isa 48:10, Mal 3:3, and Rev 3:18).

Mic 3:8 But truly I am full of power by the spirit of the LORD, and of judgment, and of might, to declare unto Jacob his transgression, and to Israel his sin.

Mic 3:9 Hear this, I pray you, ye heads of the house of Jacob, and princes of the house of Israel, that abhor judgment, and pervert all equity

This is the second time in Chapter 3 (Mic 3:1) that Micah prays for the House of Jacob and its princes that naturally abhor judgment and pervert the right (equity) ways of the Lord.  The prayers of a righteous man are Words of fire and they will avail themselves much and that means they will bring judgment to what must be judged (Jer 5:14, Jam 5:16).  The Lord’s Prayer teaches us to pray for the coming of righteousness in our walks which is the actual doing of the Word versus just hearing it in our mind (heaven).  This is bringing about the will of God which is our sanctification.

Mat 6:10 Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.

As judges in training, like Micah and the Lord’s prophets, we sit in down payment form on the throne of Israel judging the people (Mat 19:28) through Words of fire that consume all of God’s enemies in due time.  Jesus Christ IS come in the flesh, in the flesh of His people (Eph 5:30).  This coming the second time for salvation apart from sin, is to bring judgment and reprove our sin which yields righteousness.

1Jn 4:2 Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God

Joh 16:8 And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment:

This occurs as often as we are coming and reasoning together and having our old man reproved and judged.  This is something we should hasten to do as we grow in the faith.

Isa 1:18 Come now, and let us reason together (Reprove, Rebuke), saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.

Our flesh naturally despises judgment and therefore we must take heed to not forsake the assembling together of the saints.  The next verses in Hebrews tells us why.  Far better to learn the lessons sooner than later because where sin abounds, grace abounds even more (Rom 5:20).

Heb 10:26 For if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins,

Heb 10:27 But a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries

It is continuing in Him, Christ the ‘Living Word and “The Christ” (in whom the Word dwells) that we become disciples indeed (Joh 8:31).  It is in assembly of the saints by which we are being made perfect.

Heb 12:23 To the general assembly and church of the firstborn, which are written in heaven, and to God the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect

The word for “equity” is actually the word for right or uprightness.  Our carnal minds are always perverting and twisting the right ways of the Lord.  Only the Lord makes crooked things straight and makes the straight things crooked.  This straightening is what judgment does.

Isa 42:16 And I will bring the blind by a way that they knew not; I will lead them in paths that they have not known: I will make darkness light before them, and crooked things straight. These things will I do unto them, and not forsake them.

Judgment is what heal us of our spiritual infirmities and free us from the bondage of Satan.

Luk 13:13 And he laid his hands on her: and immediately she was made straight, and glorified God.

Luk 3:5 Every valley shall be filled, and every mountain and hill shall be brought low; and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough ways shall be made smooth;

Our next two verses we will look at together.

Mic 3:10 They build up Zion with blood, and Jerusalem with iniquity.

Mic 3:11 The heads thereof judge for reward, and the priests thereof teach for hire, and the prophets thereof divine for money: yet will they lean upon the LORD, and say, Is not the LORD among us? none evil can come upon us.

Flesh naturally seeks its own gain.  But we know the way of the Lord is for life to come through death. That is the true gain and the one we seek earnestly.  To reap eternal life, we are losing our life which means the old way of life and the old man must die.

Php 1:21 For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.

Yet flesh wrests away judgment and seeks its own gain instead.  Our seeking to get rich, meaning knowledge, attention, esteem, reputation, possessions and yes even money is a snare and a trap that will keep us from moving on to maturity (1 Tim 6:10).  Paul tells us to flee from such a thought life. Mind the inside of the cup first and put our thoughts on heavenly things!

1Ti 6:11 But thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness.

In our prideful and still merchandising (buying and selling) state of mind we again see just how pervasive those “Jebusite spirits” are that have our natural brute beast seeking gain and reward.  This period of apostasy, darkness, leaving our first love who is the light of life, is being used to bring recompense in due time.  Yet we don’t know it and think we shall not see the Lord’s wrath.

Jer 5:12 They have belied (Denied) the LORD, and said, It is not he; neither shall evil come upon us; neither shall we see sword nor famine:

Jer 5:13 And the prophets shall become wind, and the word is not in them: thus shall it be done unto them.

Our giving to the Lord and “His Christ” cannot be for seeking riches or any kind of gain.  We are learning to be content with our wages and what we have been given.  Our giving should not be to get back.

Luk 14:13 But when thou makest a feast, call the poor, the maimed, the lame, the blind:

Mat 6:4 That thine alms may be in secret: and thy Father which seeth in secret himself shall reward thee openly.

As workers in the vineyard of the Lord’s, we are being paid a wage the Lord establishes and as slaves to righteousness, we have no room for any disputing (Mat 20:1-16).  The Lord has planned every detail of our life, what to give, how we give and what will be our reward for our labors.

1Co 3:8 Now he that planteth and he that watereth are one: and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour.

The sin of the pride, covetousness, and the flesh all manifest in similar ways.  The very things recent studies have been exposing lie in the hearts of all flesh and are being rooted out in our day of judgment.  The Lord uses the occasion to bring His wrath for these sins His own people commit.  We spoke about usury and interest in the post study discussion last week.

Eze 22:12 In thee have they taken gifts to shed blood; thou hast taken usury and increase, and thou hast greedily gained of thy neighbours by extortion, and hast forgotten me, saith the Lord GOD.

Eze 22:13 Behold, therefore I have smitten mine hand at thy dishonest gain which thou hast made, and at thy blood which hath been in the midst of thee.

It all belongs to the Lord and we are not to lend and expect to make a profit as “freely we receive and freely we give to our brethren.

Mat 25:27 Thou oughtest therefore to have put my money to the exchangers, and then at my coming I should have received mine own with usury.

Simon, the Sorcerer, is a story that applies to us on our road to maturity.

Act 8:18 And when Simon saw that through laying on of the apostles’ hands the Holy Ghost was given, he offered them money,

Act 8:20 But Peter said unto him, Thy money perish with thee, because thou hast thought that the gift of God may be purchased with money.

Act 8:21 Thou hast neither part nor lot in this matter: for thy heart is not right in the sight of God.

We are given sheep to feed and men to lay hands on, only as the Lord brings them to us with a heart being prepared by Him and ears to hear (Psa 10:17, Joh 21:15).  Here is our last verse.

Mic 3:12 Therefore shall Zion for your sake be plowed as a field, and Jerusalem shall become heaps, and the mountain of the house as the high places of the forest.

The words “for your sake” brings to mind a pivotal Scripture we come to affirm on our journey of being taught righteousness by judgment.

2Co 4:15 For all things are for your sakes, that the abundant (scourging) grace might through the thanksgiving of many redound to the glory of God

The plowing of our earth is necessary to prepare the soil for the planting of the seed of Christ that is yielding a bountiful harvest in the appointed times.  Trials and tribulations are necessary to break up the hardened places in our hearts and destroy our love for this world as the parable of the Sower show us (Mat 13:20-22).  Until that happens the good seed does not take firm root and yield its bountiful harvest of multifold increases to the Lord.  These stony places and thorns must be cleared off the land.  This is done by the hands of Jesus Christ ploughing the land of Zion within us.  This is also the fire that curses and burns up all the briars and thorns (Heb 6:8) which are the false doctrines and 200 million carnal lies of Rev 9:16.

Heb 6:8 But that which beareth thorns and briers is rejected, and is nigh unto cursing; whose end is to be burned.

Micah 3:12 is a verse quoted here by Jeremiah and there is a lesson to be learned in this.

Jer 26:17 Then rose up certain of the elders of the land, and spake to all the assembly of the people, saying,

Jer 26:18 Micah the Morasthite prophesied in the days of Hezekiah king of Judah, and spake to all the people of Judah, saying, Thus saith the LORD of hosts; Zion shall be plowed like a field, and Jerusalem shall become heaps, and the mountain of the house as the high places of a forest.

Micah like Jeremiah, are prophets speaking to rebellious kings that are also maturing men in Christ.  This is King Hezekiah in Micah, King Jehoiakim in Jeremiah and all the Body of Christ in due time.  They wanted to kill Jeremiah who shined the light on their wicked ways and called them to repent of their evil and obey the Lord (Jer 26:13).  In Micah’s case, Hezekiah listened to the rebuke and the Lord repents of His evil and does not destroy them.

Jer 26:19 Did Hezekiah king of Judah and all Judah put him at all to death? did he not fear the LORD, and besought the LORD, and the LORD repented him of the evil which he had pronounced against them? Thus might we procure great evil against our souls.

And the lessons learned from Micah’s dealings with Hezekiah served the people to have faith and to stand up to judge one another (reason together) and teach the people of God the fear of the Lord and of His righteous judgments.  So it is to this day.  If we do not repent, grace and judgment just gets worse until we will learn by this destructive process.  In Jeremiah’s case, the king did not take heed the words of the elders who spoke to the assembly and the nation of Israel was soon taken captive to Babylon to live out 70 years of captivity.

The Lord lets the wheat and the tares grow up together until the harvest.  Men are both beasts and trees and that are caused to grow very tall and become very prideful leading up to our day of the Lord when we are being brought low again.  King Nebuchadnezzar, a servant of the Lord, had a vision that Daniel interpreted.   The interpretation gives us the understanding that we are that tall strong tree that is a sight unto to all the earth.

Dan 4:20 The tree that thou sawest, which grew, and was strong, whose height reached unto the heaven, and the sight thereof to all the earth;

But that tree is hewn down when the Lord sends the angels of the Lord to bring in the harvest.  The fact the roots are left in the earth shows us the “is, was and will be” aspect of our judgment and spiritual completion as these words never pass away.

Dan 4:23 And whereas the king saw a watcher and an holy one coming down from heaven, and saying, Hew the tree down, and destroy it; yet leave the stump of the roots thereof in the earth, even with a band of iron and brass, in the tender grass of the field; and let it be wet with the dew of heaven, and let his portion be with the beasts of the field, till seven times pass over him;

Here is a New Testament version of the watchers of the Lord bringing judgment that is the time of harvest.

Rev 14:18 And another angel came out from the altar, which had power over fire; and cried with a loud cry to him that had the sharp sickle, saying, Thrust in thy sharp sickle, and gather the clusters of the vine of the earth; for her grapes are fully ripe.

Next week Lord willing, we begin Chapter 4 and will review the verses that are nearly identical to Isaiah Chapter 2 that Mike already reviewed last month in the Isaiah study.  A pivot has been made here in Micah 3 and we begin to see the more positive side of judgment emerge in Micah 4.  Next week we begin to see the Lord regathering us back to Himself and preparing us for the painful process of childbirth and bringing forth the new man.

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.

As we mature, inwardly we produce new children, which are the mindsets the Lord is then working on in this ongoing is, was and will be process of judgment.  Old things are passing away and everything is being made new.

Rev 21:5 And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful.

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