Doing the Right Thing

Key Verse: “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

Selected Scripture:
Micah 2:1-4; 3:1-5, 8-12; 6:6-8

DURING THE TIME OF MICAH, Israel’s appreciation of the Law had diminished to the point where they viewed the offerings prescribed under the Law to be no more than a mechanism to atone for their transgressions. Micah is questioning whether the Heavenly Father requires burnt offerings, or rivers of oil. Our Key Verse answers this question. Three of the things that the Heavenly Father does require are: ‘to do justly,’ ‘love mercy’ and ‘to walk humbly.’

The first requirement Micah pointed out, was to do justly. Do unto others as you would that they should do unto you. Deal justly with others, if you would expect them to deal justly with you. Be merciful to others, if you would expect them to be merciful toward you. The prophet was encouraging the Jews to do their best to fulfill the Law’s requirements. Justice is a quality that we should not expect fully from others, but one that we should strive to accomplish in our hearts, minds, and words. We must remember that the whole human family is imperfect. If, by the grace of God, we are able to be more just or more merciful than the average, it is through God’s Spirit.

The second requirement was to love mercy. Mercy is kindness, and only those who show mercy to others will themselves receive mercy at the Lord’s hands. “Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.” (Matt. 5:7) We should be happy to give up our personal rights and privileges so that others might benefit from them, except in the case where truth or principle are involved. Many people try to practice mercy in their lives, but do not love it. Instead, they love vengeance and only show mercy because of the law of the land, public sentiment, and the Word of God. Love requires that we deal justly with all, and that we learn to appreciate the rights of others—their physical rights, their moral and intellectual rights, and their liberties. If we understand these rights, we will not try to lessen or deny them.

Micah’s final point was to walk humbly [humble thyself to walk, Marginal Translation]. The common people of the time walked wherever they had to go, so walking was a humbling experience. This point also implies that we should be in a condition of mind in which we can be taught, and in which we can appreciate his goodness and our own insignificance. God made our race in his image, but we have largely lost that image. Therefore, we should be very humble and teachable in all things. However, because of our fallen nature, those who are most able and willing to be just and merciful often struggle with being humble. The just and merciful are often filled with a spirit of pride, and a feeling of superiority to their brethren.Those most humble toward the Almighty are often those who have had great sins and great weaknesses which have helped to humble them. The Apostle Paul is an excellent example because he was struck down on the road to Damascus and left blind. God restored his sight partially, leaving his disability as a constant reminder to keep him humble as he attended to the great work that God had for him. The Divine message was, “My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness.”—II Cor. 12:9

Dawn Bible Students Association
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