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 of old, from ancient days. (Micah 5:2 ESV)
Living around the same time as Isaiah, Micah also served as a prophet to the Kingdom of Judah. Within this verse, God reveals another interesting promise concerning the coming Messiah. Speaking directly to the city of Bethlehem, the LORD declares that a ruler will come forth from that city who is from ancient days.
First, upon hearing that this ruler will be from ancient days, we should immediately understand that something truly significant is being promised. Most easily, we can understand this to mean that the ruler will be the fulfillment of ancient promises.
Second, by claiming that the ruler will come from Bethlehem, our attention should immediately return to David, who came from Bethlehem himself. Thus, the LORD is promising that a ruler will come from Bethlehem, like David, that is from of old.
The ruler here is certainly the promised Messiah. Thus, we now know that, in addition to being the descendant of David, He would also come from Bethlehem like David. Though Bethlehem was a tiny town by anyone’s standards, it had the honor of being the origin place of both David and Jesus. As with Bethlehem, God frequently uses people, places, and things that are of little importance to do extraordinary things for His glory.
Like the town of Bethlehem, are there times when you feel inadequate or insufficient? How does 2 Corinthians 12:7-10 speak of God working through our weakness?