Why do I keep putting off writing this Micah review? I’ve been busy lately, but that’s nothing new. Hey that rhymed. It was an accident. I ain’t tryna make a poem out of this. Anyway as I’m sitting here forcing myself to start writing it, I’m realizing the problem – Micah is like the prophet book equivalent of vanilla ice cream. Take the most generic, stripped-down and standardized “prophet book” outline and then write only that, and you’ve got Micah. No frills and nothing novel or interesting to jazz it up. No major hook.
No hot gingers
No whoore wives
No Samuel L. Jackson reading (or sorta reading) its verses in a classic movie
No bears eating children
Just another prophet blabbing about God’s plans to inflict violent punishment on his people. Yaaawwwn. OH WAIT – I actually did just remember one thing: This is apparently one of those Old Testament books that the New Testament later references as a supposed prophecy about the coming of Christ. So, I guess it does have one thing going for it, but unfortunately there’s not much I can even say about that until I get to the part of the New Testament that references it. I need context. Well o.k., I’ll do what I can for now.
1:2 When the Lord began to speak through Hosea, the Lord said to him,
“Go, marry a promiscuous woman and have children with her,
for like an adulterous wife this land is guilty of unfaithfulness to the Lord.”
1:3 So he married Gomer daughter of Diblaim, and she conceived and bore him a son.
Gomer, daughter of Diblaim
Hosea … more like Ho-sea!! Amiright folks?? Looks like Israel’s been hoin’ around with every Tom Dick and Harry she can get ‘er paws on eh? Yeah. That disturbing analogy has been used several times in the Bible so far, but with Hosea, we manage to get an entire book about it. Yay!! So if you’ve been reading the Bible up till this point and thinking, “You know, I’m kinda bummed that we’ve only focused on degrading women some of the time so far … I’d like more of that,” then you’re in luck! Hosea is the book for you.
Here’s the scoop. We’ve gotten several books leading into this that are considered as the books of the “Major Prophets” – Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Ezekiel. Hosea, a far shorter book than any of those ones, apparently starts off the 12 books of the “Minor Prophets” that seem to be the ones that close out of the Old Testament. I think we’re in the home stretch here, folks.
In terms of chronology, Isaiah lived and prophesied first, during the reigns of Azariah (a.k.a. Uzziah), Jotham, Ahaz and Hezekiah. Then came Jeremiah, who lived through the Babylonian takeover of Judah/Jerusalem. Then lastly was Ezekiel, who showed up during the Babylonian exile. He started later than Jeremiah but overlapped him by a good bit, as far as I can tell. With Hosea though, we rewind back to the time of Isaiah. Hosea’s timeframe is listed here as being during the reigns of the exact same kings – Uzziah through Hezekiah. Both these guys were around before and into the takeover of Israel by the Assyrians, which happened a good while before the Babylonian takeover.
“And the watchman told, saying, He came even unto them, and cometh not again: and the driving is like the driving of Jehu the son of Nimshi; for he driveth furiously.” – 2 Kings 9:20
Even if there were nothing else of interest in 2nd Kings, it was worth the read just so that I could accidentally stumble across the origin of the name of one of my longtime favorite bands. I don’t know why I never thought about where their name originated from before this (and I’ve loved them for as long as I can remember), but now I know. And let me tell you, the guy they’re named after, Jehu, is a beast. But we’ll get to that later. For now I’ll just give more good news: While 1st Kings was not the most riveting book I’ve read thus far, 2nd Kings was considerably more entertaining and action-packed.