Advent Reading – December 24

Enjoy All the Promises of God

But you, O Bethlehem Ephrathah, who are too little to be among the clans of Judah, from you shall come forth for me one who is to be ruler in Israel, whose coming forth is from of old, from ancient days. Therefore he shall give them up until the time when she who is in labor has given birth; then the rest of his brothers shall return to the people of Israel. And he shall stand and shepherd his flock in the strength of the Lord, in the majesty of the name of the Lord his God. –MICAH 5:2–4

Christ is the yes of all God’s promises, so if you trust him, they will all be your inheritance. Already Micah made clear that Christ will secure for us the promises of God. How did Micah show us this?

Any Jewish person in those days, hearing Micah predict the coming of a ruler out of Bethlehem who would feed his flock in the strength of the Lord, would think immediately of two peo- ple: David the king and the coming Son of David, the Messiah.

There are at least three links with David in this text: (1) David was from Bethlehem—that’s why it was called the “city of David.” (2) David was a ruler in Israel—he was the greatest ruler, a man after God’s own heart. (3) David was a shepherd as a boy, and later he was called the shepherd of Israel (Ps. 78:71).

The point of these three links with David is this: Micah is reasserting the certainty of God’s promise to David. Recall from 2 Samuel 7:12–16 that God said to David,

I will raise up your offspring after you, who shall come from your body and I will establish his kingdom. He shall build a house for my name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever. . . . And your house and your kingdom shall be made sure forever before me. Your throne shall be established forever.

The amazing thing about Micah is that he reasserts the certainty of this promise not at a time when Israel is rising to power but at a time when Israel is sinking toward oblivion. The northern kingdom is destroyed, and the southern kingdom will come under the judgment of God. The promises of God looked impossible.

Micah’s point was this: the coming of Christ was the confirmation of the promises of God. Here’s the way Paul put it in Romans 15:8: “Christ became a servant to the circumcised to show God’s truthfulness, in order to confirm the promises given to the patriarchs.” Or as he said in 2 Corinthians 1:20, “All the promises of God find their Yes in him.”

If you are “in him” by faith, you will inherit all the promises of God. Micah’s prediction came true in Jesus. And thus all the promises were confirmed. God has told the truth. Christmas is God’s great confirmation of all his promises. If Christ has come, God is true. And if God is true, all the promises will come true for all who trust him. Receive this unspeakable gift.


This advent reading is from The Dawning of Indestructible Joy – Daily Readings for Advent by John Piper. You can download the entire book as a free PDF or purchase the Kindle or hard copy versions here: The Dawning of Indestructible Joy – Daily Readings for Advent