To the same period belong the book of Micah, the earlier parts of the books of Samuel, of Isaiah and of Proverbs, and perhaps some Psalms. In 722 B.C. Samaria was taken and the Northern kingdom ceased to exist.
This man Micah took into his household as priest.
2 The narrative is of some value as it shows that while it was possible to appoint any one as a priest, since Micah, like David, appointed one of his own sons (xvii.
In Micah iii.
The religion of the Hebrew race - properly the Jews - now enters on a new stage, for it should be observed that it was Amos, Isaiah and Micah - prophets of Judah - who laid the actual foundations.
Unlike Amos and Micah, Isaiah was not only the prophet of denunciation but also the prophet of hope.
Another and more drastic reform than that which had been previously initiated (probably at the instigation of Isaiah and Micah) now became necessary to save the state.
If the impression left upon current thought can be estimated from certain of the utterances of the court-prophet Isaiah and the Judaean countryman Micah, the light which these throw upon internal conditions must also be used to gauge the real extent of the religious changes ascribed to Hezekiah.
Presumably therefore his social rank was far above that of Amos and Micah; certainly the high degree of rhetorical skill displayed in his discourses implies a long course of literary discipline, not improbably in the school of some older prophet (Amos vii.
I is (like those of the Psalms) the work of one or more of the Sopherim (or students and editors of Scripture) in post-exilic times, apparently the same writer (or company of writers) who prefixed the headings of Hosea and Micah, and perhaps of some of the other books.
MICAH (r n: ? ?), in the Bible, the name prefixed to the sixth in order of the books of the minor prophets.'
The editorial title of the book of Micah declares that Micah prophesied "in the days of Jotham (739-734), Ahaz (733-721) and Hezekiah (720-693), kings of Judah."
This prophetic activity of Micah under Hezekiah is confirmed by the direct statement of Jer.
- iii., from which chapters only any certain conclusions as to the prophetic message of the historic Micah can be drawn; the remaining sections of the present book (iv.
28 of a citation from Micah i.
That Micah lived in the Shephelah or Judaean lowland near the Philistine country is clear from the local colouring of i.
The word Morashtite (Morashti) was therefore obscure to them; but this only gives greater weight to the traditional pronunciation with o in the first syllable, which is as old as the LXX., and goes against the view, taken by the Targum both on Micah and on Jeremiah, and followed by some moderns (including Cheyne, E.B., 3198), that Micah came from Mareshah.
This indeed was after the pretended miraculous discovery of the relics of Micah in A.D.
The internal disorders of the realm depicted by Micah are also prominent in Isaiah's prophecies; they were closely connected, not only with the foreign complications due to the approach of the Assyrians, but with the break-up of the old agrarian system within Israel, and with the rapid and uncompensated aggrandisement of the nobles during those prosperous years when the conquest of Edom by Amaziah and the occupation of the port of Elath by his son (2 Kings xiv.
On the other hand the democratic tone which distinguishes Micah from Isaiah, and his announcement of the impending fall of the capital (the deliverance of which from the Assyrian appears to Isaiah as the necessary condition for the preservation of the seed of a new and better kingdom), are explained by the fact that, while Isaiah lived in the centre of affairs, Micah, a provincial prophet, sees the capital and the aristocracy entirely from the side of a man of the oppressed people, and foretells the utter ruin of both.
As the last of the four great prophets of the 8th century he undoubtedly contributed to that religious and ethical reformation whose literary monument is the Book of Deuteronomy.2 The remainder of the book bearing the name of Micah falls into two main divisions, viz.
It is improbable that much, if any, of these chapters can be ascribed to Micah himself, 4 not only because their contents are so different from his undoubted work (i.-iii.), for which he was subsequently remembered (Jer.
Is older than the prophecy of Micah, while on the other hand Mic. iv.
30-34 may possibly belong to Micah; Wellhausen recognizes the same possibility, which he extends, however, to vi.
Bib.) finds nothing by Micah in iv.-vii., thinks these chapters have crystallized round two central passages, viz.
Smith, the former suggesting, however, that "the existing Book of Micah consists only of a collection of excerpts, in some cases fragmentary excerpts, from the entire series of the prophet's discourses" (L.
Micah unquestionably looked for the destruction of Jerusalem as well as of Samaria in the near future and by the Assyrians (i.
The sixth chapter of Micah presents a very different situation from that of chs.
Micah may very well have lived into Manasseh's reign, but the title in i.
In English, reference may be made to Cheyne ("Micah," in the Cambridge Bible, 1882; 2nd ed., 1895), and to G.
I., in The Expositor's Bible, 1896); also to the articles on "Micah" by Nowack in Hastings's Did.
P. Smith discusses "The Strophic Structure of the Book of Micah" in a volume of Old Test.
R.*) Micah, in the Bible, a man of the hill-country of Ephraim whose history enters into that of the foundation of the Israelite sanctuary at Dan (Judges xvii.
29), was neither required nor tolerated (cp. Micah vi.
So too it is the idea of sacrificing the firstborn to Yahweh that is discussed and rejected in Micah vi.
Xviii., Micah vi.
11; Micah vi.
But the earliest forms of Hebrew priesthocd are not Canaanite in character; the priest, as he appears in the older records of the time of the Judges, Eli at Shiloh, Jonathan in the private temple of Micah and at Dan, is much liker the sadin than the kahin.
All this necessarily tended to make the ritual ministry of the priests more important than it had been in old times; but it was in the reign of Manasseh, when the sense of divine wrath lay heavy on the people, when the old ways of seeking Jehovah's favour had failed and new and more powerful means of atonement were eagerly sought for (Micah vi.
The dates of the other Minor Prophets (in some cases approximate) are: Micah, c. 725 - c. 680 B.C. (some passages perhaps later); Zephaniah, c. 625; Nahum, shortly before the destruction of Nineveh by the Manda in 607; Habakkuk (on the rise and destiny of the Chaldaean empire) 605-600; Obadiah, after the destruction of Jerusalem by the Chaldaeans in 586; Haggai, 520; Zechariah, i.
Like the teraphim it was part of the common stock of Hebrew cult; it is borne (rather than worn) by persons acting in a priestly character (Samuel at Shiloh, priests of Nob, David), it is part of the worship of individuals (Gideon at Ophrah), and is found in a private shrine with a lay attendant (Micah; Judg.
Since the absorption of the aborigines in Israel Canaanite ideas had exercised great influence over the sanctuaries - so much so that the reforming prophets of the 8th century regarded the national religion as having become wholly heathenish; and this influence the ordinary prophets, whom a man like Micah regards as mere diviners, had certainly not escaped.
The prophetic teaching had indeed produced a profound effect; to the party of reaction, as the persecution under Manasseh shows, it seemed to threaten to subvert all society; and we can still measure the range and depth of its influence in the literary remains of the period from Isaiah to the captivity, which include Micah vi.
I seq.; Micah v.).
Especially its contact with Micah vi.
Hezekiah's time may have been selected by the author of the title (or by the tradition which he represents) as being the next great literary period in Judah after Solomon, the time of Micah and Isaiah, or the selection may have been suggested by the military glory of the period (the repulse of the Assyrian army) and by the fame of Hezekiah as a pious monarch and a vigorous reformer of the national religion.
And possibly of v.3 The first narrative, that of Micah and the Danites, is of the highest interest both as a record of the state of religion and for the picture it gives of the way in which one clan passed from the condition of an invading band into settled possession of land and city.
Seq.) lies in the foundation of the Ephraimite sanctuary by Micah as also in that of Dan.
17-19 (which suggests that Micah had a greater influence than Isaiah) throws another light upon the conditions during his reign.
Micah of Mareshah and Obadiah of Bethhaccerem, see Cheyne, Ency.