Micah 7:18-20 (CEB)

18 Who is a God like you, pardoning iniquity,
        overlooking the sin of the few remaining for his inheritance?
    He doesn’t hold on to his anger forever;
        he delights in faithful love.
19 He will once again have compassion on us;
        he will tread down our iniquities.
You will hurl all our sins into the depths of the sea.
20 You will provide faithfulness to Jacob, faithful love to Abraham,
        as you swore to our ancestors a long time ago.


This particular scripture ends the book of Micah. He was a minor prophet who prophesied about 737-696 BC. In his time, Micah chided those in Israel for their lack of faith in God, as well as their inattentiveness to the poor and downtrodden. Even so, Micah’s book speaks about God as the One who has and will remain faithful to us.  When people lose faith or look to other gods, this scripture delights in the uniqueness of a compassionate God who forgives. This Old Testament book finishes with the belief that God remains the God of love and forgiveness sworn to our ancestors.

As Micah revealed, we trust in the God whose faith was shown to Jacob and to Abraham. Even where human faith fails, we know God is the one who remains steadfast. The God of our ancestors remains compassionate and understanding for all God’s people throughout time. We may lose faith, hope or love, yet our God’s faithfulness and love for us never ends. God believes in and forgives us by forgetting anger and pardoning our injustices. God’s love remains. Seven hundred years before Christ’s coming, Micah spoke of God’s faithful forgiveness. Later Jesus’ words and actions will echo such unending faithfulness. Today we know God as the One who is most faithful within this human-divine relationship. God doesn’t stay angry with us, even when we may be angry. God stays in love with us, even when we fall out of love. We believe in the God who knows our sin yet loves us anyway. As in ancient times, our God remains forever faithful and forgiving.

by Barbara Carlson

For Pondering & Prayer

The prophet Micah not only predicted the fall of Northern Israel and Jerusalem, he also prophesied about the importance of Bethlehem as the birthplace of Christ some seven centuries before his time (see also Micah 5). How has God been faithful to you when you have struggled with faith or forgiveness? How comforting is it to you to know that the God of the ancestors remains steadfast for you today?

Prayer: Holy and loving God, you have been with me always, just as you have been for my ancestors and throughout time. Thank you for your steadfast faithfulness to me. Thank you for your unending love. When I struggle, help me to see you. When I falter, help me to hear your words so that I might continue to share my faith in the world. Amen.

As We Begin Lent

For our Lent series this year, we’ll be using the Adam Hamilton book Luke: Jesus and the Outsiders, Outcasts, and Outlaws. At his website, you can find a 40-day reading plan to help you read through the Gospel of Luke during Lent. And join us for worship, in-person or online, at 9:00 & 10:30 every Sunday.