TEXT: Micah 6:6-8
READING: Psalm 40:1-17
SUBJ: A clear declaration of that which God requires in the character of His people and the relationship He will have with them; it will be seen in Christ alone.
AIM: That we might do justly, love mercy and walk humbly with our God.
INTR: The simplest of requirements that God sets before men are impossible to meet. They will offer the most difficult things but fail in the simplest of endeavors because they are spiritual.
1. From the time of the expulsion from the Garden men have sought union with God, but on their own terms.
2. A good question for us is, “what does it take to get along with God?”
3. The answer given in the text seems rather simple until it is understood that these things are defined by the Lord Himself, displayed in Christ and absolute as to compliance.
THESIS: Our acceptance with God is to be found only in Christ and the evidence is found when we do justly, love mercy and walk humbly with our God.
I. A question of approach (v. 6)
1. To many, approaching unto God is a subject for arbitration.
2. The assumption is that God will negotiate – they do not consider the part about bowing.
1) They believe they must bring something to the table
2) But, they bring such things that are of their own choosing – example Cain.
3. It is obvious that the prophet understood the nature of sacrifice and offering (he is posing this question so that the answer of verse 8 may be given).
1) Correct in understanding that something is needed
2) Correct in understanding that it come from a source other than himself.
4. He senses the reason of his own apprehension at approaching one such as the Lord.
II. A question of acceptance (vv. 6-7)
1. Will the Lord be pleased? Compare: Psalms 115:3 But our God is in the heavens: he hath done whatsoever he hath pleased. AND Romans 8:8 So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God. AND Hebrews 13:16 But to do good and to communicate forget not: for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.
1) Thus, it is a question worthy of exploration
2) It is a question that is misunderstood in that God being pleased is in conjunction with His glory – not mere compliance.
2. The sacrifices are not without significance:
1) Most preferred – calves of a year old
2) Rams in great numbers in understanding of abundant need
3) Burnt offerings answering to the demand of total sacrifice
4) Even to a firstborn son – knowing of course that this would be the greatest sacrifice but yet unacceptable to God.
3. The ultimate answer to that which pleases God: 2 Peter 1:17 For he received from God the Father honour and glory, when there came such a voice to him from the excellent glory, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.
III. The Divine requirement (v. 8)
1. Do justly as is understood in the righteousness of Christ – this is not goodness as it meets the definition of men or justice as a matter of self-determination
2. Love mercy as is displayed in the character of Christ: Matthew 9:13 But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.
1) We are to love mercy as a beneficiary of His mercy
2) We are to love mercy as a way of life and expression to others and as a desire for others.
3. To walk humbly as did Christ, our representative
1) In complete submission to He with whom we walk
2) To recognize that our communication is with God!!
3) To see that He is “THY” God!! And, we are to WALK with Him!
4) An esteemed companionship: Hebrews 11:5 By faith Enoch was translated that he should not see death; and was not found, because God had translated him: for before his translation he had this testimony, that he pleased God. See also: Genesis 5:24 And Enoch walked with God: and he was not; for God took him.
4. What “He hath showed” is Christ and everything about Him is the expression of what pleases God.
5. What He has done is regenerate a people in order that the divine requirements may be met – Christ in you!
1) Consider that there is reaction in a positive way to His Word and Revelation in Christ
2) Consider that there is interaction with Him personally in devotion and worship
3) Consider that there is subtraction of self from every approach to God with the hope of pleasing Him.