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Friday, July 8, 2016

Who is a God Like You? (Micah 7:18-19)

"Who is a God like you, who pardons sin and forgives the transgression of the remnant of his inheritance? You do not stay angry forever but delight to show mercy. You will again have compassion on us; you will tread our sins underfoot and hurl our iniquities into the depths of the sea."

Who is a God like You? What a great question! To answer that question is to tell a story about a man and a people.

God's promise to Abraham in Genesis 12:1-3 was a unilateral promise. It was based on God's ability, not Abraham's ability. God promised to make Abraham a great nation with descendants as innumerable as the stars in the sky and as immeasurable as the sand of the seashore. Several thousand years have passed and God has kept His promise. Generation after generation, however, of Abraham's descendants rebelled against God, worshiped idols, intermarried with the peoples around them, and mistreated one another. Yet, a small remnant remained faithful to the Lord throughout every generation.

The world is full of religions whose gods are dark and distant and whose ways are capricious and hard. Adherents are never sure of forgiveness, love, and care. Then there's God, the Living God who:
  • Pardons sin and forgives the transgression of the remnant of His inheritance
  • Does not stay angry forever
  • Delights to show mercy
  • Will again have compassion
  • Will tread our sins underfoot
  • Will hurl all our iniquities into the depths of the sea
The heart of God is for His people. What God has done for us in Christ Jesus is scandalous. He has provided what He has demanded: holiness. It is in Christ Jesus that sins are pardoned and that mercy and compassion are given. It is at great cost that God has reconciled sinners to Himself. It is no wonder that Micah ends his prophecy by asking, "Who is a God like You?"

The Song of Moses captures the answer to this question by stating, "Who is like You, O LORD, among the gods? Who is like You, glorious in holiness, fearful in praises, doing wonders? You stretched out Your right hand; the earth swallowed them. You in Your mercy have led forth the people whom You have redeemed; You have guided them in Your strength to Your holy habitation" (Exodus 15:11-13). Anyone who has experienced God at all declares that there is none like the LORD.

Questions for today's Chronological Bible reading:
Micah 4:1-7:20
  • What analogy does Micah use at least twice in today's reading to describe God's relationship with Israel?
  • List the Messianic prophesies listed in today's reading.
  • Describe the influence the remnant will have among those around them.
  • Why is the Lord not interested in burnt offerings?
Turning truth into prayer
Thank the Lord for His pardon, mercy and compassion.