“And he said unto them, Well did Isaiah prophesy of you hypocrites, as it is written, This people honoreth me with their lips, But their heart is far from me. But in vain do they worship me, Teaching as their doctrines the precepts of men.” (Mark 7:6-7)
There’s nothing new under the sun. Mankind has been fooling around with God’s commands since the beginning. The story of Micah, not to be confused with the prophet Micah by the same name, is no different. (Judges 17 & 18).
From chapter 17 of Judges, we can glean 5 mistakes that MICAH makes in his religion that modern folks continue to make today.
Some may ask, why so negative? Couldn’t you present a more positive lesson? My reply is sure, but that’s not what God reveals to us. I guess you could say that if we do the opposite of the mistakes we will be pleasing to God.
The 5 mistakes of MICAH (Judges 17)repeated today.
The first mistake is that he Shared in his MOTHER’S error.
“And when he had restored the eleven hundred shekels of silver to his mother, his mother said, I had wholly dedicated the silver unto the Lord from my hand for my son, to MAKE A GRAVEN IMAGE AND A MOLTEN IMAGE: now therefore I will restore it unto thee” (Judge 17:3).
Many today follow the religion of their parents without ever checking to know if it is right on the eyes of the Lord. “That’s where my parents and grandparents always went to church.” Your parents likely worshipped in all sincerity, but that is not how we determine what God wants. Consider Jesus, He said, “For I am come to set a man at variance against his FATHER, and the daughter against her MOTHER, and the daughter in law against her mother in law.  And a man’s foes shall be they of his own household.  He that loveth FATHER OR MOTHER more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me” (Matthew 10:35-37).
We are to worship God according to his word, not according to the traditions of our Fathers & Mothers.
“Howbeit in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.  And he said unto them, Full well ye reject the commandment of God, that ye may keep your own tradition” (Mark 7,9).
How do we correct this mistake? Ask for biblical evidence for everything said and done in your religion. Search the scriptures to find if what is being taught, & practiced is according to the word of God. (Act 17:11)
The second mistake is that Micah had made IDOLS.
“Yet he restored the money unto his mother; and his mother took two hundred shekels of silver, and gave them to the founder, who made thereof a graven image and a molten image: and they were in the house of Micah” (Jud 17:4).
We have idols today. Many have GRAVEN images and idols of Jesus on the cross, (we don’t know what Jesus looked like) that folks kneel down before to pray. Some even erect little shrines in their homes to pray over.
Most of us practice a different kind of IDOLATRY called COVETING.
“Mortify therefore your members which are upon the earth; fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence, and COVETOUSNESS, which is IDOLATRY:” (Col 3:5)
How do we correct this mistake? We can examine ourselves and our practices through the New Testament doctrine of Christ. It also says in Colossians… “And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him” (Col 3:17).
The third mistake of Micah is that he CHANGED the law to suit himself.
“And the man Micah … consecrated one of his sons, who became his priest”
Priests were from the tribe of Levi and had some very specific criteria. Micah didn’t follow that, because he and his sons were not from the tribe of Levi, they were from Ephraim (cf. Leviticus 9; Heb 7:14). Therefore, they were disqualified from being priests under the Law of Moses.
How do we correct this mistake? We can examine all of our practices in religion (& other areas) in light of the scriptures.
When we find a practice that is different from, or not found in scripture, we are to conform to the word of God. When we see alterations to the Eldership, to teachers, or adding offices that are foreign to scripture, we need to stop.
Here’s a short list of places to start:
How are we saved? (Matt 7:24; John 8:32; Luke 13:3; Matt 10:32; Mark 16:16; Rev 2:10)
How do we worship? (John 4:24; Col 3:16; Act 2:42)
Next week we’ll examine the last 2 mistakes and the ways to correct them.
The church that assembles here at Franklin & Juniper don’t claim to be perfect people, but we do strive to learn, know the truth, and practice the truth.