Do. Love. Walk.

Published 10:00 pm Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Have you ever wondered how God would have you live?

The prophet Micah offers a concise answer:

“He has told you, O mortal, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?” (Micah 6:8)

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The answer isn’t hidden in bizarre apocalyptic language.

The answer isn’t disguised in a confounding parable.

This answer is clear and straightforward:

Do justice. Love kindness. Walk humbly.

Mark Twain once said: “It ain’t the parts of the Bible that I can’t understand that bother me, it is the parts that I do understand.”

We understand Micah’s text.

Do justice.

That is, do what’s right. Do the right thing in your private and public life—even when it’s hard. Even when it costs you. Work for fairness and equality. Especially for those who are weak or vulnerable. Speak up for those who have no voice. Look out for the poor; don’t take advantage of them, and don’t let others take advantage of them. Take care of orphans and widows. Advocate for the unborn. Welcome strangers. Love your enemies.

Love kindness.

The Hebrew word hesed is difficult to translate, as there is no English equivalent. The NRSV translates it as kindness. The NIV translates it as mercy.

No matter how you translate hesed, God expects us to be kind and merciful. 

Be kind to your friends. Be kind to your family. Be kind to people who don’t like you. Be kind to people you don’t like. Be kind to people who believe like you. Be kind to people who don’t believe like you. Be kind to people of other faiths. Be kind to people who claim no faith.

Have mercy on people who don’t deserve it. Have mercy on people you’d like to get even with. Have mercy on people who are grieving and hurting. Have mercy on people who are hungry and thirsty. Have mercy on people who are fleeing violence and war.

Have mercy, just as the Samaritan did (Luke 10:29-37), because every person you will ever encounter is your neighbor.

Walk humbly.

This is not so much an additional requirement, as it is a summary of the other two.

To walk with God is to follow the path of Jesus. And when you come to a fork in the road on that path, and you wonder, “What would Jesus do?” You already know.

Jesus would do what is right. Jesus would be kind. Jesus would offer mercy.

This is the kind of life that is pleasing to God.

This is the kind of life that offers real life.




It’s really not that complicated.

– Pastor Jeff Harris, First Baptist Tryon