Micah 2:5
Therefore you shall have none that shall cast a cord by lot in the congregation of the LORD.
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(5) Thou shalt have none . . .—i.e., thou shalt have no part or inheritance in the congregation of the Lord—apparently referring to the ancient division of the land by lot.

2:1-5 Woe to the people that devise evil during the night, and rise early to carry it into execution! It is bad to do mischief on a sudden thought, much worse to do it with design and forethought. It is of great moment to improve and employ hours of retirement and solitude in a proper manner. If covetousness reigns in the heart, compassion is banished; and when the heart is thus engaged, violence and fraud commonly occupy the hands. The most haughty and secure in prosperity, are commonly most ready to despair in adversity. Woe to those from whom God turns away! Those are the sorest calamities which cut us off from the congregation of the Lord, or cut us short in the enjoyment of its privileges.Therefore thou shalt have none that shall east a cord by lot in the congregation of the Lord - Thou, in the first instance, is the impenitent Jew of that day. God had promised by Hosea to restore Judah; shortly after, the prophet himself foretells it Micah 2:12. Now he forewarns these and such as these, that they would have no portion in it. They had "neither part nor lot in this matter" Acts 8:21. They, the not-Israel then, were the images and ensamples of the not-Israel afterward, those who seem to be God's people and are not; members of the body, not of the soul of the Church; who have a sort of faith, but have not love. Such was afterward the Israel after the flesh, which was broken off, while the true Israel was restored, passing out of themselves into Christ. Such, at the end, shall be those, who, being admitted by Christ into "their portion," renounce the world in word not in deed. Such shall have "no portion forever "in the congregation of the Lord." For "nothing defiled shall enter there, nor whatsoever worketh abomination or a lie, but they which are written in the Lamb's book of life" Revelation 21:27.

The ground of their condemnation is their resistance to light and known truth. These not only "entered not in" Luke 11:52, themselves, but, being hinderers of God's word, them that were entering in, they hindered.

5. Therefore—resumed from Mic 2:3. On account of your crimes described in Mic 2:1, 2.

thou—the ideal individual ("me," Mic 2:4), representing the guilty people in whose name he spoke.

none that … cast a cord by lot—none who shall have any possession measured out.

in the congregation of the Lord—among the people consecrated to Jehovah. By covetousness and violence (Mic 2:2) they had forfeited "the portion of Jehovah's people." This is God's implied answer to their complaint of injustice (Mic 2:4).

Therefore; because your sins, so great, universal, and incorrigible, have provoked God to frame and design this desolation against you, and because he will punish you according to your ways.

Thou; either oppressor, spoken thus as to one, that it might comprehend every one of them, who are described Micah 2:2, or else this thou is the whole family, spoken of Micah 2:3; perhaps both these may best be meant here.

None that shall cast a cord by lot; none that shall ever return to this land, to claim an inheritance there, or to see it allotted by line, and given to them to possess it. The prophet here alludes to the manner of dividing fields and inheritance of old in use among them, as in Joshua’s time. So both the whole family in general, and the great ones, oppressors and extortioners, are more particularly menaced with an utter and perpetuated exclusion out of the land in which they sinned, and whence they are carried captives; whoever do, neither they, nor their posterity, shall possess inheritances in it.

In the congregation of the Lord; they should no more be the congregation of the Lord, nor should their children be so, or stand in the congregation of the Lord at any time hereafter, to claim their portion among God’s people. Thus they are rejected and disinherited, and this to this day is verified on the main body of this people. Therefore thou shalt have none that shall cast a cord by lot,.... This confirms what was before delivered in a parabolical way, and as a lamentation; and is spoken either to the false prophet, as Kimchi; who should not be, nor have any posterity to inherit by lot the land of Israel; or to those oppressors that took away houses and fields from others, these should have no part nor lot in the land any more; or rather to the whole, people of Israel, who should no more inherit their land after their captivity, as they have not to this day. The allusion is to the distribution of the land by lot, and the dividing of it by a cord or line, as in Joshua's time; but now there should be no land in the possession of Israelites to be divided among them; nor any people to divide it to, being scattered up and down in the world, and so no need of any person to be employed in such service; nor any sanhedrim or court of judicature to apply unto for a just and equal division and distribution, who perhaps may be meant in the next clause:

in the congregation of the Lord; unless this is to be understood of the body of the people, who were formerly called the congregation of the Lord, Deuteronomy 23:1; though now they had forfeited this character, and are only called so ironically, as some think. Aben Ezra interprets it, when the Lord returns the captivity of his people; and so Kimchi, who applies it to the false prophet, as before observed, who at this time should have no part nor lot in the land.

Therefore thou shalt have none that shall cast a cord by lot in {c} the congregation of the LORD.

(c) You will have no more lands to divide as you had in times past, and as you used to measure them in the Jubilee.

5. Therefore thou shall have none, &c.] Because the Israelites have violated the divinely sanctioned law of land-tenure, ‘therefore’ they shall have no future opportunity of redistributing the soil in accordance with equity. And this, because the ‘congregation of Jehovah,’ from which such a redistribution should proceed, is itself about to be dissolved.

that shall cast a cord by lot] Rather, that shall cast the measuring-line upon a lot (i.e. an allotment); alluding to the original distribution of Canaan by lot. Of course, the redistribution of the land in the year of Jubilee was governed, not by lot, but by regard for the old family-rights; still the primitive term ‘lot’ held its ground (so Psalm 16:5; Psalm 125:3).Verse 5. - Therefore thou. BECAUSE thou, the tyrannical, oppressive grandee (vers. 1, 2), hast dealt with thy neighbour's land unjustly, therefore thou shalt have none that shall cast a cord (the line) by lot (for a lot); i.e. thou shalt have no more inheritance in Israel. The "line" is the measuring line used in dividing land, as Amos 7:17. The reference is to the original distribution of the land by lot in Joshua's time (see Joshua 14:2, etc.). In the congregation of the Lord. The Lord's own people, whose polity was now about to be dissolved. Hitzig, Reuss, and Orelli suppose that this verse contains a threat against Micah himself on the part of the ungodly Jews, intimating that they will punish him for presuming to prophesy against them, and that he shall die without leaving children. But this seems far fetched and inadmissible. The prophet utters the second woe over the careless heads of the nation, who were content with the existing state of things, who believed in no divine judgment, and who revelled in their riches (Amos 6:1-6). To these he announces destruction and the general overthrow of the kingdom (Amos 6:7-11), because they act perversely, and trust in their own power (Amos 6:12-14). Amos 6:1. "Woe to the secure upon Zion, and to the careless upon the mountain of Samaria, to the chief men of the first of the nations, to whom the house of Israel comes! Amos 6:2. Go over to Calneh, and see; and proceed thence to Hamath, the great one: and go down to Gath of the Philistines: are they indeed better than these kingdoms? or is their territory greater than your territory? Amos 6:3. Ye who keep the day of calamity far off, and bring the seat of violence near." This woe applies to the great men in Zion and Samaria, that is to say, to the chiefs of the whole of the covenant nation, because they were all sunk in the same godless security; though special allusion is made to the corrupt leaders of the kingdom of the ten tribes, whose debauchery is still further depicted in what follows. These great men are designated in the words נקבי ראשׁית הגּוים, as the heads of the chosen people, who are known by name. As ראשׁית הג is taken from Numbers 24:20, so נקבי is taken from Numbers 1:17, where the heads of the tribes who were chosen as princes of the congregation to preside over the numbering of the people are described as men אשׁר נקּבוּ בּשׁמות, who were defined with names, i.e., distinguished by names, that is to say, well-known men; and it is used here in the same sense. Observe, however, with reference to ראשׁית הגּוים, that in Numbers 24:20 we have not הגּוים, but simply ראשׁית גּוים. Amalek is so called there, as being the first heathen nation which rose up in hostility to Israel. On the other hand, ר הגוים is the firstling of the nations, i.e., the first or most exalted of all nations. Israel is so called, because Jehovah had chosen it out of all the nations of the earth to be the people of His possession (Exodus 19:5; cf. 2 Samuel 7:23). In order to define with still greater precision the position of these princes in the congregation, Amos adds, "to whom the house of Israel cometh," namely, to have its affairs regulated by them as its rulers. These epithets were intended to remind the princes of the people of both kingdoms, "that they were the descendants of those tribe-princes who had once been honoured to conduct the affairs of the chosen family, along with Moses and Aaron, and whose light shone forth from that better age as brilliant examples of what a truly theocratical character was" (Hengstenberg, Dissertations, i. p. 148). To give still greater prominence to the exalted calling of these princes, Amos shows in Amos 6:2 that Israel can justly be called the firstling of the nations, since it is not inferior either in prosperity or greatness to any of the powerful and prosperous heathen states. Amos names three great and flourishing capitals, because he is speaking to the great men of the capitals of the two kingdoms of Israel, and the condition of the whole kingdom is reflected in the circumstances of the capital. Calneh ( equals Calno, Isaiah 10:9) is the later Ctesiphon in the land of Shinar, or Babylonia, situated upon the Tigris opposite to Seleucia (see at Genesis 10:10); hence the expression עברוּ, because men were obliged to cross over the river (Euphrates) in order to get there. Hamath: the capital of the Syrian kingdom of that name, situated upon the Orontes (see at Genesis 10:18 and Numbers 34:8). There was not another Hamath, as Hitzig supposes. The circumstance that Amos mentions Calneh first, whereas it was much farther to the east, so that Hamath was nearer to Palestine than Calneh was, may be explained very simply, from the fact that the enumeration commences with the most distant place and passes from the north-east to the south-west, which was in the immediate neighbourhood of Israel. Gath: one of the five capitals of Philistia, and in David's time the capital of all Philistia (see at Joshua 13:3; 2 Samuel 8:1). The view still defended by Baur - namely, that Amos mentions here three cities that had either lost their former grandeur, or had fallen altogether, for the purpose of showing the self-secure princes of Israel that the same fate awaited Zion and Samaria - is groundless and erroneous; for although Calneh is spoken of in Isaiah 10:9 as a city that had been conquered by the Assyrians, it cannot be proved that this was the case as early as the time of Amos, but is a simple inference drawn from a false interpretation of the verse before us. Nor did Jeroboam II conquer the city of Hamath on the Orontes, and incorporate its territory with his own kingdom (see at 2 Kings 14:25). And although the Philistian city Gath was conquered by Uzziah (2 Chronicles 26:60, we cannot infer from 2 Chronicles 26:6, or from the fact of Gath not being mentioned in Amos 1:6-8, that this occurred before the time of Amos (see at Amos 1:8). On the other hand, the fact that it is placed by the side of Hamath in the passage before us, is rather a proof that the conquest did not take place till afterwards.
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