King James Bible
with Catholic Commentary by George Leo Haydock

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Micah 3

The cruelty of the princes, and the falsehood of the prophets. (1-8) Their false security. (9-12)

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The cruelty of the princes, and the falsehood of the prophets

1 And I said, Hear, I pray you, O heads of Jacob, and ye princes of the house of Israel; Is it not for you to know judgment?

2 Who hate the good, and love the evil; who pluck off their skin from off them, and their flesh from off their bones;

3 Who also eat the flesh of my people, and flay their skin from off them; and they break their bones, and chop them in pieces, as for the pot, and as flesh within the caldron.

4 Then shall they cry unto the LORD, but he will not hear them: he will even hide his face from them at that time, as they have behaved themselves ill in their doings.

5 Thus saith the LORD concerning the prophets that make my people err, that bite with their teeth, and cry, Peace; and he that putteth not into their mouths, they even prepare war against him.

6 Therefore night shall be unto you, that ye shall not have a vision; and it shall be dark unto you, that ye shall not divine; and the sun shall go down over the prophets, and the day shall be dark over them.

7 Then shall the seers be ashamed, and the diviners confounded: yea, they shall all cover their lips; for there is no answer of God.

8 But truly I am full of power by the spirit of the LORD, and of judgment, and of might, to declare unto Jacob his transgression, and to Israel his sin.

Their false security

9 Hear this, I pray you, ye heads of the house of Jacob, and princes of the house of Israel, that abhor judgment, and pervert all equity.

10 They build up Zion with blood, and Jerusalem with iniquity.

11 The heads thereof judge for reward, and the priests thereof teach for hire, and the prophets thereof divine for money: yet will they lean upon the LORD, and say, Is not the LORD among us? none evil can come upon us.

12 Therefore shall Zion for your sake be plowed as a field, and Jerusalem shall become heaps, and the mountain of the house as the high places of the forest.

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G Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Ver. 1. I. Heb. and Sept. “He, the Lord, said;” or, Micheas addressed the princes of both kingdoms, under Ezechias. v. 12. Jer. xxvi. 18. — To know and practice. Osee vi. 3. C. — Both rich and poor strove to extort from each other. W.

Ver. 2. Skins. When some exhorted Tiberius to lay on more taxes, he replied: “a good shepherd must shear the flock, and not tear off the skin.” Suet. xxxii.

Ver. 5. Peace. They pretend goodness, while they do the greatest mischief. — Prepare. Lit. “sanctify,” (H.) or denounce war. C. — False prophets seek their private lucre. W.

Ver. 6. Vision. Impostors shall skulk through fear, when the people shall see that they were not sent. v. 7.

Ver. 8. Spirit. I am no impostor. C. ii. 11.

Ver. 10. Iniquity. You offer victims unjustly procured, or build your palaces with what belongs to the poor.

Ver. 11. Hire. It is not lawful to refuse instruction to those who have nothing; nor must priests act solely for a temporal reward, though reason shews that they should be supported by those whom they have to teach. Mat. x. 8, 10. Gal. vi. 6. and 1 Tim. v. 18. C. — The judges grew rich by other people’s quarrels; and, as all ranks offended, they were justly involved in ruin. v. 12. W.

Ver. 12. Forests, after its destruction by Nabuchodonosor. C. — In the space of three years’ neglect, shrubs were growing in the courts of the temple. 1 Mac. iv. 38. H. — Rufus ploughed up the spot where the temple had stood, after the Romans had burnt it down. S. Jer. Jos. Bel. vii. 20. — This prediction made a deep impression on the minds of the people. It caused them to refrain from killing Jeremias. v. 1. C.