Micah 7:4
Parallel Verses
New International Version
The best of them is like a brier, the most upright worse than a thorn hedge. The day God visits you has come, the day your watchmen sound the alarm. Now is the time of your confusion.

New Living Translation
Even the best of them is like a brier; the most honest is as dangerous as a hedge of thorns. But your judgment day is coming swiftly now. Your time of punishment is here, a time of confusion.

English Standard Version
The best of them is like a brier, the most upright of them a thorn hedge. The day of your watchmen, of your punishment, has come; now their confusion is at hand.

New American Standard Bible
The best of them is like a briar, The most upright like a thorn hedge. The day when you post your watchmen, Your punishment will come. Then their confusion will occur.

King James Bible
The best of them is as a brier: the most upright is sharper than a thorn hedge: the day of thy watchmen and thy visitation cometh; now shall be their perplexity.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
The best of them is like a brier; the most upright is worse than a hedge of thorns. The day of your watchmen, the day of your punishment, is coming; at this time their panic is here.

International Standard Version
The best of them is like a thorn, and their most upright like a hedge of thorns. The day announced by your watchmen— and by your own calculations—approaches. Now it's your time to be confused!

NET Bible
The best of them is like a thorn; the most godly among them are more dangerous than a row of thorn bushes. The day you try to avoid by posting watchmen--your appointed time of punishment--is on the way, and then you will experience confusion.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
The best of them is like a briar. The most decent person is sharper than thornbushes. The day you thought you would be punished has come. Now is the time you will be confused.

Jubilee Bible 2000
The best of them is as a brier; the most upright as a thorn hedge: the day of thy watchmen, thy visitation, comes; now shall be their confusion.

King James 2000 Bible
The best of them is like a brier: the most upright is sharper than a thorn hedge: the day of your watchmen and your punishment comes; now shall be their perplexity.

American King James Version
The best of them is as a brier: the most upright is sharper than a thorn hedge: the day of your watchmen and your visitation comes; now shall be their perplexity.

American Standard Version
The best of them is as a brier; the most upright is worse than a thorn hedge: the day of thy watchmen, even thy visitation, is come; now shall be their perplexity.

Douay-Rheims Bible
He that is best among them, is as a brier: and he that is righteous, as the thorn of the hedge. The day of thy inspection, thy visitation cometh: now shall be their destruction.

Darby Bible Translation
The best of them is as a briar; the most upright, [worse] than a thorn-fence. The day of thy watchmen, thy visitation is come; now shall be their perplexity.

English Revised Version
The best of them is as a brier: the most upright is worse than a thorn hedge: the day of thy watchmen, even thy visitation, is come; now shall be their perplexity.

Webster's Bible Translation
The best of them is as a brier: the most upright is sharper than a thorn hedge: the day of thy watchmen and thy visitation cometh; now shall be their perplexity.

World English Bible
The best of them is like a brier. The most upright is worse than a thorn hedge. The day of your watchmen, even your visitation, has come; now is the time of their confusion.

Young's Literal Translation
Their best one is as a brier, The upright one -- than a thorn-hedge, The day of thy watchmen -- Thy visitation -- hath come. Now is their perplexity.
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

7:1-7 The prophet bemoans himself that he lived among a people ripening apace for ruin, in which many good persons would suffer. Men had no comfort, no satisfaction in their own families or in their nearest relations. Contempt and violation of domestic duties are a sad symptom of universal corruption. Those are never likely to come to good who are undutiful to their parents. The prophet saw no safety or comfort but in looking to the Lord, and waiting on God his salvation. When under trials, we should look continually to our Divine Redeemer, that we may have strength and grace to trust in him, and to be examples to those around us.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 4. - The best of them is as a briar; hard and piercing, catching and holding all that passes by. The plant intended by the word chedek is a thorny one used for hedges (Proverbs 15:19). Under another aspect thorns are a symbol of what is noxious and worthless (2 Samuel 23:6), or of sin and temptation. The most upright is sharper (worse) than a thorn hedge. Those who seem comparatively upright are more injurious, tangled, and inaccessible than a hedge of thorns. In punishment of all this corruption, the prophet points to the day of judgment. The day of thy watchmen. The day of retribution foretold by the prophets (Isaiah 21:6; Jeremiah 6:17; Ezekiel 3:17). And (even) thy visitation; in apposition with the day, the time, and explanatory of punishment. Cometh; is come - the perfect tense denoting the certainty of the future event. Septuagint, Οὐαὶ αἱ ἐκδικήσεις σου ἥκασι, "Woe! thy vengeance is come." Now shall be their perplexity. When this day of the Lord comes, there shall be confusion (Isaiah 22:5); it shall bring chastise ment before deliverance. The prophet here, as elsewhere, changes from the second to the third person, speaking of the people gene rally. Septuagint, Νῦν ἔσονται κλαυθμοὶ αὐτῶν "Now shall be their weeping;" so the Syriac. Pusey notes the paronomasia here. They were as bad as a thorn hedge (merucah); they shall fall into perplexity (mebucah).

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

The best of them is as a brier,.... Good for nothing but for burning, very hurtful and mischievous, pricking and scratching those that have to do with them:

the most upright is sharper than a thorn hedge; which, if a man lays hold on to get over, or attempts to pass through, his hands will be pricked, his face scratched, and his clothes tore off his back; so the best of these princes, judges, and great inch, who put on a show of goodness, and pretended to do justice, yet fetched blood, and got money out of everyone they were concerned with, and did them injury in one respect or another; or the best and most upright of the people of the land in general, that made the greatest pretensions to religion and virtue, yet in their dealings were sharp, and biting, and tricking; and took every fraudulent method to cheat, and overreach, and hurt men in their property:

the day of thy watchmen; either which the true prophets of the Lord, sometimes called watchmen, foretold should come, but were discredited and despised, will now most assuredly come; and it will be found to be true what they said should come to pass: or the day of the false prophets, as Kimchi and Ben Melech; either which they predicted as a good day, and now it should be seen whether it would be so or not; or the day of their punishment, for their false prophecies and deception of the people:

and thy visitation cometh; the time that God would punish the people in general for their iniquities, as! well as their false prophets, princes, judges, and great men; who also may be designed by watchmen:

now shall be their perplexity: the prince, the judge, and the great man, in just retaliation for their perplexing the cause of the poor; or of all the people, who would be surrounded and entangled with calamities and distresses, and not know which way to turn themselves, or how to get out of them.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

4. as a brier—or thorn; pricking with injury all who come in contact with them (2Sa 23:6, 7; Isa 55:13; Eze 2:6).

the day of thy watchmen—the day foretold by thy (true) prophets, as the time of "thy visitation" in wrath [Grotius]. Or, "the day of thy false prophets being punished"; they are specially threatened as being not only blind themselves, but leading others blindfold [Calvin].

now—at the time foretold, "at that time"; the prophet transporting himself into it.

perplexity—(Isa 22:5). They shall not know whither to turn.

Micah 7:4 Additional Commentaries
Context
Israel's Great Misery
3Concerning evil, both hands do it well. The prince asks, also the judge, for a bribe, And a great man speaks the desire of his soul; So they weave it together. 4The best of them is like a briar, The most upright like a thorn hedge. The day when you post your watchmen, Your punishment will come. Then their confusion will occur. 5Do not trust in a neighbor; Do not have confidence in a friend. From her who lies in your bosom Guard your lips.…
Cross References
Isaiah 10:3
What will you do on the day of reckoning, when disaster comes from afar? To whom will you run for help? Where will you leave your riches?

Isaiah 22:5
The Lord, the LORD Almighty, has a day of tumult and trampling and terror in the Valley of Vision, a day of battering down walls and of crying out to the mountains.

Jeremiah 11:23
Not even a remnant will be left to them, because I will bring disaster on the people of Anathoth in the year of their punishment."

Jeremiah 46:21
The mercenaries in her ranks are like fattened calves. They too will turn and flee together, they will not stand their ground, for the day of disaster is coming upon them, the time for them to be punished.

Ezekiel 2:6
And you, son of man, do not be afraid of them or their words. Do not be afraid, though briers and thorns are all around you and you live among scorpions. Do not be afraid of what they say or be terrified by them, though they are a rebellious people.

Ezekiel 28:24
"'No longer will the people of Israel have malicious neighbors who are painful briers and sharp thorns. Then they will know that I am the Sovereign LORD.

Hosea 9:7
The days of punishment are coming, the days of reckoning are at hand. Let Israel know this. Because your sins are so many and your hostility so great, the prophet is considered a fool, the inspired person a maniac.

Nahum 1:10
They will be entangled among thorns and drunk from their wine; they will be consumed like dry stubble.
Treasury of Scripture

The best of them is as a brier: the most upright is sharper than a thorn hedge: the day of your watchmen and your visitation comes; now shall be their perplexity.

is a.

2 Samuel 23:6,7 But the sons of Belial shall be all of them as thorns thrust away, …

Isaiah 55:13 Instead of the thorn shall come up the fir tree, and instead of the …

Ezekiel 2:6 And you, son of man, be not afraid of them, neither be afraid of …

Hebrews 6:8 But that which bears thorns and briers is rejected, and is near to …

the day.

Ezekiel 12:23,24 Tell them therefore, Thus said the Lord GOD; I will make this proverb …

Hosea 9:7,8 The days of visitation are come, the days of recompense are come; …

Amos 8:2 And he said, Amos, what see you? And I said, A basket of summer fruit. …

thy.

Isaiah 10:3 And what will you do in the day of visitation, and in the desolation …

Jeremiah 8:12 Were they ashamed when they had committed abomination? no, they were …

Jeremiah 10:15 They are vanity, and the work of errors: in the time of their visitation …

now.

Isaiah 22:5 For it is a day of trouble, and of treading down, and of perplexity …

Luke 21:25 And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the …

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