Micheas vii.

Notes & Commentary:

Ver. 1. Figs, which are the worst. (St. Jerome; St. Ambrose in Luke vii. 3.) Yet they were eagerly sought after, before the other figs came to maturity. They had escaped the rigours of winter. Such Christ (Calmet) seemed to expect, Mark xi. 13.

Ver. 2. Holy man. Hebrew chasid, (Haydock) “the pious” Assidean, 2 Machabees xiv. 6. The disorder of Israel was great, though some were religious. (Calmet) — Such expressions only mean that few could be found, and that the far greatest number rejected the prophet’s advice. (Worthington)

Ver. 3. Giving. Septuagint, “speaks words of peace.” He flatters the prince, (Haydock) and dares not oppose the unjust. Syriac, “he says, bring presents.” — Troubled it; or, “have thy?” &c. Hebrew, “they confirm it.”

Ver. 4. Brier. Hebrew chedek, or “thorn.” Septuagint, “a consuming moth.” — Inspection, or of thy chiefs (Haydock) and prophets. (Calmet)

Ver. 5. Bosom. In times of general distress, even domestics are not trusted; because all are solicitous for themselves, even to the prejudice of others. (Worthington) — Before the ruin of Israel civil wars raged, 4 Kings xv. Our Saviour alludes to this passage, Matthew x. 35., Luke xii. 52., and xxi. 16. People will rise up to oppress true believers; and these must abandon their nearest relations, when they prove an obstacle to salvation. Thus is the moral, and the other the literal sense. (Calmet)

Ver. 10. She; Babylon, my enemy. (Challoner) — It was taken by the Medes and Persians, who set the Jews at liberty, to the great mortification of their enemies. (Worthington) — God thus displayed his justice or mercy, rescuing his people from the night of misery. — Streets. Cyrus treated the fallen city with contempt. It stood for some time afterwards. (Calmet)

Ver. 11. Law of thy enemies, who have tyrannized over thee. (Challoner) — The walls of Jerusalem are ordered to be rebuilt, Aggeus i.

Ver. 12. Fortified. Hebrew also, “Egypt, and from Egypt to the river Euphrates,” &c. The Jews shall occupy their ancient limits, Amos viii. 12. (Calmet) — The fenced cities may be Pelusium, Gaza, Tyre, &c. From all parts the captives shall return. (Haydock) — They were very numerous under the Machabees, and in the time of Christ. (Calmet)

Ver. 13. Land of Babylon, (Challoner) or “the land of Judea (Haydock) has been,” &c. It might also be again made desolate, because the captives built houses for themselves, and neglected the temple, Aggeus i. 10.

Ver. 14. Alone: destitute of all things, or in full security, Jeremias xv. 17., and Numbers xxiii. 9. God will feed his people (Calmet) in the most fertile places, designated by Carmel and Basan. (Haydock) — A pastor must maintain sound doctrine and discipline. (Worthington)

Ver. 15. Wonders. The prophets speaking of the return, have Christ and his religion in view; so that they seem not to find terms sufficiently magnificent, Isaias ix. 15., and xliii. 16., and Zacharias x. 11. We know from Esdras that nothing so surprising attended the liberation of the people. (Calmet)

Ver. 16. Strength, because they cannot overcome the Hebrews or Christians. (Menochius) — Deaf, being astonished, Job xxi. 5.

Ver. 17. Serpents, (Genesis iii. 14.) out of respect or rage. (Calmet) — Converts shall humbly apply to the ministers of Christ to receive baptism and confirmation. (Theodoret; Sanct. lxvii.)

Ver. 18. No more, for past offences. Yet, if they transgress again, they must not expect impunity. The Jews still bleed for the murder of the Messias. (Calmet)

Ver. 19. Away. Protestants, “subdue,” (Haydock) or trample upon. (Calmet)

Ver. 20. Truth, performing what he had promised out of mercy to Abraham. (Worthington)

Bible Text & Cross-references:

The prophet laments, that notwithstanding all his preaching, the generality are still corrupt in their manners: therefore their desolation is at hand: but they shall be restored again and prosper; and all mankind shall be redeemed by Christ.

1 Wo is me, for I am become as one that gleaneth in autumn the grapes of the vintage: there is no cluster to eat, my soul desired the first-ripe figs.

2 The holy man is perished out of the earth, and there is none upright among men: they all lie in wait for blood, every one hunteth his brother to death.

3 The evil of their hands they call good: the prince requireth, and the judge is for giving: and the great man hath uttered the desire of his soul, and they have troubled it.

4 He that is best among them, is as a brier: and he that is righteous, as the thorn of the hedge. The day of thy inspection, thy visitation cometh: now shall be their destruction.

5 Believe not a friend, and trust not in a prince: keep the doors of thy mouth from her that sleepeth in thy bosom.

6 *For the son dishonoureth the father, and the daughter riseth up against her mother, the daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law: **and a man’s enemies are they of his own household.

7 But I will look towards the Lord, I will wait for God, my Saviour: my God will hear me.

8 Rejoice not, thou my enemy, over me, because I am fallen: I shall arise, when I sit in darkness, the Lord is my light.

9 I will bear the wrath of the Lord, because I have sinned against him: until he judge my cause, and execute judgment for me: he will bring me forth into the light, I shall behold his justice.

10 And my enemy shall behold, and she shall be covered with shame, who saith to me: Where is the Lord thy God? my eyes shall look down upon her: now shall she be trodden under foot as the mire of the streets.

11 The day shall come, that thy walls may be built up: in that day shall the law be far removed.

12 In that day they shall come even from Assyria to thee, and to the fortified cities: and from the fortified cities even to the river, and from sea to sea, and from mountain to mountain.

13 And the land shall be made desolate, because of the inhabitants thereof, and for the fruit of their devices.

14 Feed thy people with thy rod, the flock of thy inheritance, them that dwell alone in the forest, in the midst of Carmel: they shall feed in Basan and Galaad, according to the days of old.

15 According to the days of thy coming out of the land of Egypt, I will shew him wonders.

16 The nations shall see, and shall be confounded at all their strength: they shall put the hand upon the mouth, their ears shall be deaf.

17 They shall lick the dust like serpents, as the creeping things of the earth, they shall be disturbed in their houses: they shall dread the Lord, our God, and shall fear thee.

18 *Who is a God like to thee, who takest away iniquity, and passest by the sin of the remnant of thy inheritance? he will send his fury in no more, because he delighteth in mercy.

19 He will turn again, and have mercy on us: he will put away our iniquities: and he will cast all our sins into the bottom of the sea.

20 Thou wilt perform the truth to Jacob, the mercy to Abraham: which thou hast sworn to our fathers from the days of old.



6: Matthew x. 21. — ** Matthew x. 36.

18: Jeremias x. 6.; Acts x. 43.