Part 1 showed us that when we are told to “love kindness [hesed]” we are in fact being told to reflect our God’s character. But this is a high calling. And not one the Israelites were —or we are—particularly likely to live up to.
In the next chapter (Micah chapter 7), the observation is made that “the godly has perished from the earth, and there is no-one upright among mankind” (v. 2). The Hebrew word translated as “godly” has the same root as hesed. Faithfully kind people can’t be found.
As a consequence, there is nothing they can do but accept the punishment coming to them (7:9). It is God who can, and will, “do justice”.
Better yet, it is God who can and will do justice whilst at the same time being the one who can go beyond justice and “love hesed” (7:18-20).
The humility we express in walking with our God starts with gratefully recognising that it is his character and his deeds that reflect justice and hesed, not ours. Left to ourselves, justice and hesed would be rare.
Even in Micah there is a clear indication that the time of justice and ultimate hesed is going to be the time when God himself acts as the king and shepherd of his people; when a God-appointed ruler comes forth “from of old, from ancient days” (see 2:12-13, 4:1-8 and 5:2-5).
The incarnate Lord Jesus is that ruler: the man who fulfils the requirements of Micah 6:8 for us. We humbly walk with God by loving his hesed and receiving his grace-filled justice before we seek to reflect and share these traits in and through our own lives. But reflect and share these traits we must, and the more we realize how much we have been shown hesed, the more we will love showing hesed to others (cf. Luke 7:43, 47).
So, Micah 6:8 is indeed a great verse to know, and for us to ‘do’ … but it needs to have the cross attached to it.
So, as we strive to live out our TGS Mission Statement in ‘22, this is a great verse to help us do that.
[This was taken from an email from Matthias Media: www.matthiasmedia.com.au]