Bible Commentaries
Micah 1

Trapp's Complete CommentaryTrapp's Commentary

Verse 1

Mic 1:1 The word of the LORD that came to Micah the Morasthite in the days of Jotham, Ahaz, [and] Hezekiah, kings of Judah, which he saw concerning Samaria and Jerusalem.

Ver. 1. The word of the Lord, &c. ] See Trapp on " Hos 1:1 "

To Micah the Morasthite ] To distinguish him from Micaiah, the son of Imlah, who prophesied in Ahab’s days, over a hundred years before this. Micah the Morasthite, so called from the place of his birth or abode, which is made famous by him (as Abder was by Democritus, Hippo by Austin), and not he by it. Ambrose saith his name signifieth Quis iste? Who is this? Who (saith that father in answer)? not one of the common sort, but an elect vessel to carry God’s name to his people. Jerome, from his title, Morasthite, interpreted, calleth him cohaeredem Christi, co-heir with Christ, of whom and his kingdom he sweetly prophesieth; and may, therefore, be called the evangelical prophet; as was Isaiah, his contemporary, with whom he hath many things common; and this one thing above him, that he nameth Bethlehem, Christ’s birthplace, Micah 5:2 , for the which (as well as for his boldness, Jer 26:18 ) he was famous in the Church, Matthew 2:6 John 7:42 .

In the days of Jotham, Ahaz, Hezekiah ] Ahaz standeth between Jotham and Hezekiah, as a thistle or thorn between two lilies, or roses. Manasseh comes after, and degenerates into his grandfather Ahaz. To his time Micah attained not, much less to Josiah’s, as Isidore hath it; for between Jotham and Josiah were a hundred and twenty years at least. It is probable that Micah prophesied forty years, if not more; wherein he saw many changes and met with many molestations; had cause enough to cry out with his colleague, "Who hath believed our report?" "My leanness, my leanness," &c. Yet held he on his course; as being of Latimer’s mind, who, speaking in one of his sermons of a minister that gave this answer why he left off preaching? viz. because he saw he did no good. This, saith Latimer, is a naughty, a very naughty answer.

Which he saw ] sc. with the eyes of his mind for the use of the Church; whereto this prophecy comes commended, first, as "the word of the Lord," and, secondly, as extraordinarily revealed to this prophet.

Concerning Samaria and Jerusalem ] Samaria seemeth to be first named because most guilty before God. They are yoked together, because there was scarcely ever a better (Aholah and Aholibah, sisters in sin), and one the much worse for the other’s neighbourhood. Jerusalem would take it in high scorn, likely, to be matched with Samaria, so much slighted and shunned by her, John 4:9 , as Papists now do to be set by Protestants, Turks by Christians (the word of a Mussulman bears down all other testimony among them). But this prophet is very bold (as it is said of Isaiah’s contemporaries, Rom 10:20 ), binds them both up in one bundle, and spareth not to show Judah their transgressions, and the house of Jacob their sins.

Verse 2

Mic 1:2 Hear, all ye people; hearken, O earth, and all that therein is: and let the Lord GOD be witness against you, the Lord from his holy temple.

Ver. 2. Hear, all ye people ] He beginneth as Isaiah, in a lofty and stately style, pouring himself out in a golden flood of words (as Cicero speaketh of Aristotle’s Politics), and calling for utmost attention and affection; as knowing that he had to do with men more deaf than sea monsters, and more dull than the very earth they trod on; which is therefore here commanded to hearken, since men (that habitable part of God’s earth, Pro 8:31 ) will not hear and give ear; wherein they are worse than the insensible creatures, Psalms 119:91 .

And let the Lord God be witness against you ] Here he turneth his speech to the refractory Jews; speaking to God as a righteous judge and swift witness, Iudex, Iudex, vindex, against them if they hearkened not to his message: nisi pareant, ideoque pereant.

The Lord from his holy temple ] That is, let him testify from heaven, Psalms 11:4 , that he is displeased with you, and that I have carefully sought your soul’s health. Or, from his temple at Jerusalem, wherein ye glory, and where ye think ye have him as fast bound to you as the Tyrians had their idol Apollo, whom they chained and nailed to a post, that he might not forsake them, when Alexauder besieged their town, and took it (Macrob. lib. 8, cap. 9). The heathens had a trick, when they besieged a city, to call the tutelar gods out of it by a certain charm, as believing that it could not otherwise be taken (Virg. Aen. 2). In a like sense whereunto some have interpreted the following verses here.

Verse 3

Mic 1:3 For, behold, the LORD cometh forth out of his place, and will come down, and tread upon the high places of the earth.

Ver. 3. For, behold, the Lord cometh out of his place ] That is, say they, out of Judea and his temple there, leaving it to the Chaldeans and Assyrians. See Ezekiel 3:12 , and chapters 9-11, where God makes various withdrawals from the cherubins to the threshold, from thence to the east gate, from thence to mount Olivet, quite out of the city, Ezekiel 11:23 , and when God was gone, then followed the fatal calamity, in the ruin of the city. But by God’s coming forth out of his place here I conceive is meant his descending from heaven to do justice on this hypocritical nation, Isaiah 26:21 , and because hypocritis nihil stupidius; hypocrites, resting on their external performances and privileges, will hardly be persuaded of any evil toward them. Micah 3:11 , "Is not the Lord," say they, "among us? none evil can come upon us"; therefore we have here an emphatic Ecce, "Behold, the Lord cometh"; he is even upon the way already, and will be here with the first. He will come down as once at Sodom, when their sin was very grievous, Genesis 18:20 , when they were overcharged with the superfluity of naughtiness; God came from heaven to give their land a vomit; and so he would do here; for unregenerate Israel was to God as Ethiopia, Amos 9:7 , as the rulers of Sodom and people of Gomorrah, Isaiah 1:10 .

And tread upon the high places of the earth ] The high and mighty ones, that, having gotten on the top of their hillocks as so many ants, think themselves so much the better and safer, repose confidence in their high places and strongholds, as Nebuchadnezzar did in his Babel, Edom in his clefts of the rocks, munitions of rocks, Obadiah 1:3 , the rich fool in his heaps and hoards, Luke 12:19 ; these, with their false confidences, God will tread down in his anger, and trample them in his fury, as the mire of the streets; he will bring down their strength to the earth, and lay their honour in the dust, Isaiah 63:3 ; Isaiah 63:6 .

Verse 4

Mic 1:4 And the mountains shall be molten under him, and the valleys shall be cleft, as wax before the fire, [and] as the waters [that are] poured down a steep place.

Ver. 4. And the mountains shall be molten under him ] This is to the self same sense; though men swell, in their own eyes, to the size of so many mountains; and though, gotten upon their hill of ice, they think they shall never be moved, Psalms 30:6-7 ; yet, when God, with his devouring fire and everlasting burnings, comes in presence, these craggy mountains shall soon dissolve and melt as wax, they shall be as waters poured down a descent, they shall flow as a land flood. By which similitudes, and familiar comparisons, is notably set forth the irresistible wrath of God for the frightening of hard hearted sinners, that they may take hold of his strength, and make peace with him, Isaiah 27:5 .

The valleys also shall be deft ] The poorer sort also shall have their share in the common calamity. God will neither spare the high for their might, nor the base for their meanness, but lords and lowies together, shall be

as wax before the fire, &c. ] Wax is a poor fence against fire, sticks and stubble against a strong torrent; so human force against Divine judgments.

Verse 5

Mic 1:5 For the transgression of Jacob [is] all this, and for the sins of the house of Israel. What [is] the transgression of Jacob? [is it] not Samaria? and what [are] the high places of Judah? [are they] not Jerusalem?

Ver. 5. For the transgression of Jacob is all this ] Lest they should think, either that these things were threatened in terrorem in fear only, and would never be inflicted; or else that they had not deserved such severity, but that God should pour out his wrath rather upon the heathen, that knew him not, and upon the families that called not on his name. The prophet here showeth that Jacob was become a just object of God’s indignation, by his transgressions or rebellions, and the whole house of Israel by their sins; there was a general defection, and therefore they must expect a general destruction. For what reason? the just Lord is in the midst thereof: he will not do iniquity, he will not acquit the guilty: morning by morning doth he bring his judgments to light, he faileth not: but the unjust knoweth no shame, will take no warning, which is a just both presage and desert of his ruin.

What is the transgression of Jacob? ] Say they in a chatting way; like those miscreants in Malachi, that so worded it with God, Malachi 1:1-14 ; Malachi 3:1-15 .

Is it not Samaria? ] Saith the prophet, in answer to that daring demand of theirs. So,

what are the high places of Judah? ] viz. the superstitious and carnal confidences thereof? Is it not Jerusalem? saith the prophet. Are not their capital cities become their capital sins? Read we not of the calf of Samaria, Hosea 8:5 , and did not her kings set up idols at Dan and Bethel, and Gilgal and Beersheba? As for Jerusalem, had she not turned the very temple into a high place, by resting in her ceremonial services and sacrifices? Did not some of her best kings wink at the high places? And Ahaz, that stigmatic Belialist, shut up God’s temple and set up strange worships? How then could these frontless fellows ask "What is the transgression?" and "What are the high places?" The prophet goes not behind the door to tell them that the best of them were no better than a rabble of rebels against heaven; and their chieftains were most in fault, though they least liked to hear of it. Samaria is a very Poneropolis, and Jerusalem is little better; they both are even transformed into sin’s image; the prophet here speaks of them as if they were not only sinful, but sin itself; as Cicero saith of one Tubulus, a Roman praetor, that he was so desperately wicked, ut eius nomen non hominis sed vitii esse videretur; that he passed not for a man, but for a vice, so flagitious were his practices; or, as Austin saith of this present evil world, that it is nothing else but a sty of filthy hogs, or a kennel of mad dogs, Hara porcorum, vel colluvies rabidorum canum (Aug.).

Verse 6

Mic 1:6 Therefore I will make Samaria as an heap of the field, [and] as plantings of a vineyard: and I will pour down the stones thereof into the valley, and I will discover the foundations thereof.

Ver. 6. Therefore I will make Samaria as an heap of the field ] i.e. When stones are gathered out of a field they are laid together on heaps, so I will take course that where Samaria now is, there shall be nothing to be seen but heaps of stones and rubbish. God is the true προλιπορθος : "for thou hast made of a city a heap; of a defenced city a ruin: a palace of strangers to be no city; it shall never be built," Isaiah 25:2 . Of Rome it was long since prophesied:

Tota eris in cineres, quasi nunquam Roma fuisses.

“The entire city will be in ashes, just as Rome never existed.”

Oh that God would hasten that day! Scipio foresaw it, and wept, sc. when he saw Carthage set all on fire by himself. In the greatness of the Turkish empire are swallowed up many kingdoms and countries; besides all those churches and places so much spoken of in Scripture, the Romans only excepted; yet, no doubt, for their many and mighty sins, time shall triumph over this so great a monarchy, when it shall but then live by fame, as others now do. Iam seges est ubi Troia fuit. Though thou build thy walls as high as heaven (said the oracle to wicked Phocas), yet sin, that lieth at the foundation, will one day overturn them.

And as plantings of a vineyard ] That is, it shall be made a place fit for the planting of vines; it shall be utterly rased and harassed. A Lapide observeth the fitness of the expression here used, in that Samaria was situated on a hill that bore vines; and before it was a city it had been a vineyard: God threateneth to make it so again, and so to stain the pride of all its glory. See what a trouble town sin is. Surely did people but know what it will once cost them and cause to them, they dared not but be innocent.

And I will pour down the stones thereof into the valley ] That is, into a bycorner. Clearing of stones is necessary to a vineyard, Isaiah 5:2 , there being no possession that requireth more pains and care, as Cato hath observed.

And I will discover the foundation thereof ] I will not leave a stone upon a stone, nor any footstep of so stately a city, that hath so long time been a cage of unclean birds, an Augean stable of abominable idolaters. God, as he hath loving respects to the places of his servants’ birth and abode, Psa 87:6 Isaiah 49:16 , so he sets the marks of his wrath upon those places where foul sins have been perpetrated, as upon our abbeys and monasteries, whose very foundations are laid naked.

Verse 7

Mic 1:7 And all the graven images thereof shall be beaten to pieces, and all the hires thereof shall be burned with the fire, and all the idols thereof will I lay desolate: for she gathered [it] of the hire of an harlot, and they shall return to the hire of an harlot.

Ver. 7. And all the graven images thereof ] Upon these the jealous God will execute vengeance: so to show his hatred of idolatry. "The stones of the altars he will make as chalk stones that are beaten in sunder, the groves and the images shall not stand up," Isaiah 27:9 . As for those that "worship them, and repent not of the works of their hands," Revelation 9:20 , they shall smart surely for their idolatries, as did those of old in the wilderness; and the more ingenuous of their posterity acknowledge at this day, that there is no punishment befalleth them in which there is not still an ounce of that golden calf. True it is, that the Samaritan superstition which was grosser at first (and for which they were carried captive by the Assyrian), was afterwards refined by Manasseh, a Jewish priest, that in Alexander’s time made a defection to him, and brought many Jews with him, but that saved them not from utter destruction.

And all the hires thereof shall be burnt with fire ] Her rewards given her by her sweet hearts, Hosea 2:5 ; Hosea 2:12 ; Hosea 9:1 ; her vowed presents and memories (as Papists now call them), her monies and donaries, shall be set on a light fire. God will confute their vain confidences, as he did those Popish rebels of Norfolk, in Edward VI’s time, who brought into the battle the Pix under his canopy, and with all his trinkets, crosses, banners, candlesticks, memories, &c., which in the end could neither help themselves nor save their friends from the hands of their enemies (Acts and Mon. fol. 1190).

For she gathered it of the hire of an harlot, &c. ] Ill-gotten goods thrive not. Few harlots are found to be rich. Indeed we read of Phryne, a notable strumpet, that she offered to rebuild the walls of Thebes, on the condition that this might be engraved on them, ’ O μεν Aλεξανδρος κατεσκαψεν , &c. Alexander pulled them down, and Phryne set them up again, but it would not be accepted. Flora also, the Roman harlot, was very rich; and so is the whore of Babylon to this day, by her trading with the merchants of the earth; but this will not hold long, Revelation 18:10 . In one hour shall her judgment come, and in one hour so great riches shall come to nothing, Revelation 18:17 . England was wont to be counted and called the Pope’s ass, for bearing his burdens, and his puteus inexhaustus, his infinite pit of treasure, whence he drew at pleasure. Polydore Virgil was sometime collector of his Peter Pence here, &c.; but Henry VIII cashiered and cast him out hence, depriving him of his harlot hire. And well he had done, had he not given occasion to those that came after to complain, Possidebant Papistae, possident iam Rapistae.

Verse 8

Mic 1:8 Therefore I will wail and howl, I will go stripped and naked: I will make a wailing like the dragons, and mourning as the owls.

Ver. 8. Therefore I will wail and howl ] Good men are usually more deeply affected with the wretched estate of wicked persons than they themselves are. Thus Samuel mourned for Saul’s rejection; Daniel was astonished and troubled at the import of Nebuchadnezzar’s dream, Daniel 4:19 ; Habakkuk’s belly trembled, and his lips quivered, at the consideration of the judgments that were to come upon the Chaldeans, Habakkuk 3:16 . Do we so (saith Mr Perkins) at other men’s smartings?

I will go stripped ] Tam mente quam veste, rending off my garments, and casting them from me, as if bereft of my wits: Pro demente vel insane quidam accipiunt, saith Calvin here. See Isaiah 59:15 , with the margin, and Isaiah 20:2 .

I will make a wailing like the dragons ] Which, sucking the elephant’s blood till he fall down dead upon them and oppress them with his huge bulk, make a horrible howling; so horrible (saith Palacius out of Pliny and Solinus) that they amaze, yea, kill those that hear it. Fides sit penes autores.

And mourning as the owls ] Heb. as the daughters of the owl, or of the ostrich. Young ostriches cast off by their dams, Job 39:14 Lamentations 4:3 , and hunger bitten, howl pitifully, as do also the young ravens for like cause, Psalms 147:9 . Of the ravens of Arabia it is recorded, that, full gorged, they have a tuneable sweet song; but empty, screech horribly. By these similitudes here used the prophet would express his grief to be unexpressible.

Verse 9

Mic 1:9 For her wound [is] incurable; for it is come unto Judah; he is come unto the gate of my people, [even] to Jerusalem.

Ver. 9. For her wound is incurable ] Or, she is grievously sick of her wounds; or, her wounds are full of anguish, neither is there any to pour in balm of Gilead, to allay it; any to lick it whole, as the Lady Elinor did her husband Prince Edward’s wound, traitorously given him in the Holy Land, by an assassin, with a poisoned knife.

For it is come unto Judah ] viz. Samaria’s wound and plague is come, i.e. shall shortly come, though now they live as if out of the reach of God’s rod, or as if they had a protection.

He is come unto the gate of my people ] Sennacherib (flushed with former successes at Samaria, which had been carried captive by his father) came up to the very gate of Jerusalem as an overflowing scourge; and thought to have cut off all the Jews at once, as if they had had all but one neck. He came up over all his channels, and went over all his banks. He passed through Judah, and overflowed, reaching even to the neck; and the stretching out of his wings filled the breadth of thy land, O Immanuel, Isaiah 8:8 . But Immanuel soon took a course with him, Isaiah 37:33 , so that though he came to the gates, yet he entered not into the city, nor shot an arrow there, nor cast a bank against it. "Look upon Zion," saith that prophet, "the city of our solemnities," and see if Jerusalem be not still "a quiet habitation," Isaiah 33:20 . "Walk about Zion," saith the psalmist, "and go round about her: tell the towers thereof." See if any be missing since Sennacherib came up against them. "Mark ye well her bulwarks": are they diminished? "consider her palaces": are they at all defaced? Psalms 48:12-13 . What if Jerusalem be wicked? yet Sennacherib is insolent. If therefore Jerusalem shall be smitten with the rod of Sennacherib’s fear, Sennacherib shall be smitten with the sword of God’s revenges, who of all things cannot endure a presumptuous and self-confident vaunter; but will deal with his people not according to his ordinary rule, but according to his prerogative. Surely "Israel hath not been forsaken, nor Judah of his God, of the Lord of hosts; though their land was filled with sin against the Holy One of Israel," Jeremiah 51:5 .

Verse 10

Mic 1:10 Declare ye [it] not at Gath, weep ye not at all: in the house of Aphrah roll thyself in the dust.

Ver. 10. Declare ye it not at Gath, weep ye not at all ] sc. in their sight and hearing (though at home weep your fill, Mic 1:8 ), lest the daughters of those uncircumcised triumph, 2 Samuel 1:20 ; lest out of your tragedies they compose comedies, and ye become their music, while they revel in your ruins and make themselves merry in your misery.

In the house of Aphrah roll thyself in the dust ] An elegant word play in the original; q.d. dust thyself in the house of dust. Aphrah had its name from its dustiness; as Paris is called Lutetia a lute, from its dustiness, and as Hiram called the twenty cities of Galilee given him by Solomon, Cabul, that is, dirty, or displeasing, 1 Kings 9:13 . Fitly was this city called Aphrah, or dusty, saith the prophet; for it shall be reduced to dust, and the inhabitants occasioned to roll themselves in the dust, in token of extreme sorrow. See Lamentations 2:10 . Some think Apbrah is put for Ephraim; others better understand it for a particular city; either that in the tribe of Manasseh, Gideon’s city, Judges 6:11 , or that other in the tribe of Benjamin, Joshua 18:23 , not far from Jerusalem.

Verse 11

Mic 1:11 Pass ye away, thou inhabitant of Saphir, having thy shame naked: the inhabitant of Zaanan came not forth in the mourning of Bethezel; he shall receive of you his standing.

Ver. 11. Pass ye away, thou inhabitant of Saphir ] Or, thou that dwellest fairly, as it were in a city set with sapphires, see Isaiah 54:11 , such as was Susa in Persia, and Antioch in Syria, a city so sweet and specious that Mahomet never dared come into it, lest he should be there detained by the pleasure of the place. Saphir here (say some) may allude to Samaria, that instead of her fairness shall be exposed to ignominy and nakedness: they shall be carried away, "young and old, naked and barefoot, even with their buttocks uncovered, to the shame of Samaria," Isaiah 20:4 . So the Pope’s champions dealt by the Waldenses in France, those ancient Protestants. One great city of theirs they took, and put to the sword sixty thousand. To another they gave quarter for life; but so as that both the men and the women should depart stark naked, and show all, partibus illis quae honeste nominari non possunt, sanctorum illorum cruciatorum oculis expositis.

The inhabitant of Zaanan ] Loci pecorosi, saith Junius, the country of flocks. Some make it to allude to Zion. Others say it signifieth an outlet; and make it to be as a gate to the kingdom of Judah. These came not forth of their gate in the mourning of Bethezel, or of the place together, to condole with them, as having their hands full at home, and matter enough of mourning for their own misery.

He shall receive of you his standing ] The enemy shall stand and stay among you till he hath subdued you, and made a clear conquest; he shall not give you over till he have done the deed.

Verse 12

Mic 1:12 For the inhabitant of Maroth waited carefully for good: but evil came down from the LORD unto the gate of Jerusalem.

Ver. 12. For the inhabitant of Maroth waited carefully for good ] Or, shall grieve for the good, viz. that he hath lost in the common calamity; grieve till he be heart sick, as Amos 6:6 , or wait till he faint, for "hope deferred maketh the heart sick," Proverbs 13:12 . The name of this city is Maroth, that is, bitternesses; and bitter things shall befall her, see Ruth 1:20 , because together with the good of piety, which she ought to have waited upon, she hath lost the good of prosperity, which in vain she hath waited for. "The expectation of the wicked is wrath," Proverbs 11:23 .

But evil came down from the Lord ] It is he that sends and sets the enemy to work; as Titus acknowledged, at the last destruction of Jerusalem, that he only lent his hands to the Divine justice. It was God that stirred up enemies to revolted Solomon. And Job descried God’s hand on the arms of the Sabean robbers.

Verse 13

Mic 1:13 O thou inhabitant of Lachish, bind the chariot to the swift beast: she [is] the beginning of the sin to the daughter of Zion: for the transgressions of Israel were found in thee.

Ver. 13. O thou inhabitant of Lachish, bind the chariot to the swift beast ] To the camel or dromedary, saith Calvin, which is a very swift beast (we call a slow body dromedary, per antiphrasin ), or to the post horses Aniariis, as Junius; he means, Make haste away. Salmaneser is already at Samaria, and Sennacherib will be ere long at Lachish, Isaiah 36:2 . Hannibal ad portas, Hannbal at the gates, begone with all possible speed; haste, haste, haste.

She is the beginning of sin to the daughter of Zion ] Not partner only, but author and ringleader. Such are all leaders of heresy and inventors of evil things, Romans 1:30 . These shall drink deep of God’s wrath here, and be cast alive into the burning lake, Revelation 19:20 . Some apply the words to the confederacy of Lachish with Jerusalem against King Amaziah, 2 Kings 14:19 , slain at this city.

For the transgressions of Israel were found in thee ] The often change of person in this verse is remarkable. The chief sin that Lachish stands charged with is that, being near to Beersheba, she had learned her manner, Amos 8:14 , that is, her rites and religions, instituted by Jeroboam, and transmitted them to Jerusalem. Superstition soon spreads, and is catching; like the Jerusalem artichoke, it quickly overruns the ground, and chokes the heart.

Verse 14

Mic 1:14 Therefore shalt thou give presents to Moreshethgath: the houses of Achzib [shall be] a lie to the kings of Israel.

Ver. 14. Therefore shalt thou give presents, &c. ] And so seek to make thee friends among the Philistines; but such carnal confederacies never prosper. The Greek Churches, A. D. 1438, afraid of the Turks, sent and subjected themselves to the Bishop of Rome, that they might have the help of the Latin Churches; but shortly after they were destroyed, their empire subdued, and swallowed up by the Ottoman greatness, &c. How much better were it to send a lamb to the ruler of the earth! Isaiah 16:1 , to bring presents unto him that ought to be feared! Psalms 76:11 , even to God, who cutteth off the spirits of princes, and is terrible to the kings of the earth! Micah 1:12 . Was he not so to Sennacherib, whom Lachish here feared, and fled from? to Nebuchadnezzar, Belshazzar, Xerxes, who, after he had wasted over two million men into Greece, and whipped the Hellespont (for battering his bridge of boats over it) with three hundred stripes, was defeated, routed, and forced to flee back in a poor fisher’s boat, to save his own life? (Herod.)

The houses of Achzib (that is, of a lie) shall be a lie to the kings of Israel] Or have been a lie to the kings of Israel; never true to those that trusted them: and wilt thou confederate with them, and confide in them?

Verse 15

Mic 1:15 Yet will I bring an heir unto thee, O inhabitant of Mareshah: he shall come unto Adullam the glory of Israel.

Ver. 15. Yet will I bring an heir unto thee ] Or, a possessor, who shall lay claim to thee, as by right of inheritance. This heir was the Assyrian, and those colonies brought by him into the cities of Israel, 2 Kings 17:34 . These took upon them as heirs and owners of the country, till turned out afterwards by Josiah, King of Judah, 2Ki 23:4 ; 2 Kings 23:8 . Here is another elegant allusion, as this chapter is full of them, for Mareshah signifieth an inheritance or possession. And if it were Micah’s own country, as many think, we may see the prophet’s integrity in not bearing with his best friends; but taking the same liberty to tell them of their sins and dangers that they did to commit the one and to incur the other. "Physician, heal thyself," said they to our Saviour, Luke 4:23 , that is, thine own country, as it is there explained.

He shall come unto Adullam, the glory of Israel ] Haply so called, because David was once there hidden and housed, and the place thereby renowned. Or, because it was a stronghold, wherein Israel gloried and trusted, but in vain, since the enemies should come to it, and surprise it. Some think poor Adullam is called "the glory of Israel" ironically, and by way of scorn. Some read it thus, O glory of Israel (to wit, then lost and overthrown); and they make it to be a deep sigh of the prophet, sent from the bottom of his heart; whereby he witnesseth that he is greatly sorry for the ruin of the Israelites; that he might move them also to mourn in like manner. This he further presseth them to in the next words.

Verse 16

Mic 1:16 Make thee bald, and poll thee for thy delicate children; enlarge thy baldness as the eagle; for they are gone into captivity from thee.

Ver. 16. Make thee bald and poll thee ] i.e. Make most bitter lamentation. He alludes to a custom among the Easterlings, of tearing off the hair of their heads and beards in times of great heaviness. See Job 1:20 Isa 15:2 Jer 7:29 Ezra 9:3 . In other cases baldness was forbidden Israel (lest they should symbolize with heathens), but in case of sorrow for sin they were called to it, Isaiah 22:12 .

For thy delicate children ] To whom thou hast been rather a parricide than a parent; dealing by them, as that false schoolmaster in Italy, that brought forth his scholars to Hannibal.

As the eagle ] When he is old, and loseth his feathers; and with them not only his beauty, but also his swiftness and courage.

Bibliographical Information
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Micah 1". Trapp's Complete Commentary. 1865-1868.