Following the Playbook

Micah 2:1-2 is the playbook of evil doers, of diabolic administrations time immemorial. If leaders head down this path, they are obviously evil. It will be plainly evident in their leadership and legislation. Here a spokesman of God (Micah) calls it like it is. He’s no talking head on cable news.

Woe to those who scheme iniquity,
Who work out evil on their beds!
When morning comes, they do it,
For it is in the power of their hands.

Micah 2:1

These people scheme.

As for a rogue, his weapons are evil; he devises wicked schemes to destroy the afflicted with slander, even though the needy one speaks what is right.

Isaiah 32:7

They plan perpetually to do harm, even in their sleep.

He plans wickedness upon his bed; he sets himself on a path that is not good; he does not despise evil.

Psalm 36:4

They act quickly as soon as power is in their hands. Their actions may be subtle at first, but depending on the power they wield, bold and daring.

For their hearts are like an oven as they approach their plotting; their anger smolders all night, in the morning it burns like a flaming fire.

Hosea 7:6

They covet fields and then seize them,
And houses, and take them away.
They rob a man and his house,
A man and his inheritance.

Micah 2:2

Watch carefully for anything that involves taking away the land of the people, and their houses, even indirectly through legal acquisitions.

Woe to those who add house to house and join field to field, until there is no more room, so that you have to live alone in the midst of the land!

Isaiah 5:8

To own property and quietly enjoy it is essential to freedom.

Watch carefully for the implementation of any means by which to rob a person of one’s income, i.e., taxes, and eventually one’s inheritance. In their eyes, the people must not be self-sufficient, but dependent and destitute.

The story of Naboth’s vineyard illustrates how this is worked out. (1 Kings 21:1-15) Ahab coveted Nahum’s nearby vineyard. The king started with a classic approach negotiating an exchange or sale, but Nahum refused. Hear his reason.

“The Lord forbid me that I should give you the inheritance of my fathers.”

1 Kings 21:3

Ahab’s conniving wife Jezebel took matters into her own hands and plotted Naboth’s death, using the king’s position and power (“Do you now reign over Israel?” v. 7) and was successful. And just like that, Ahab had his vineyard.

On the other hand, a ruler who increases the capacity of the people to enjoy their lives and thrive in freedom is good by contrast alone.

Micah’s message is that God will judge the evil rulers and ultimately set up a Kingdom established on a righteous foundation.

About Rick Reynolds

You'll find me in the far right hand corner of evangelical Christianity. Been studying the Word for nearly 45 years and counting.
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