Daily Devotions


Day 13

"The houses of Achzib shall be a lie to the kings of Israel"

Text: Micah 1:14


Micah’s hometown was Moresheth Gath, not very far from Jerusalem. Judah’s threat came from Babylon which was an empire on the rise. King Hezekiah had foolishly invited Babylonian envoys to visit Jerusalem. He boasted about his wealth to the Babylonians on that visit.

Isaiah the prophet, an older contemporary of Micah, reproached King Hezekiah and warned him that the Babylonians would one day come and seize all that they had seen in the palace and the temple (Isaiah 39).


Assyria had once threatened to conquer Judah, but by divine intervention, Judah had been spared (Isaiah 37). Years later, Israel sought help from waning empires, Assyria, Egypt and other nations nearby to help them face the threat of war from Babylon. Micah addressed this problem in this text.

“Therefore you shall give presents to Moresheth Gath;
The houses of Achzib shall be a lie to the kings of Israel.”
Micah 1:14

1. “Therefore you shall give presents to Moresheth Gath”

a) The giving of presents was a common practice between nations that have treaties with each other.
b) Foreign envoys would give presents when they came to Israel/Judah on their state visits.
c) Israel and Judah would then reciprocate.
d) On the surface, things may appear good and strong.
e) On its own, Israel and Judah felt vulnerable.
f) Together, they felt safer.

2. From being enemies to become allies

a) In the past, Assyria and Egypt were a threat to Israel and Judah.
b) But as new kings arose, new treaties were forged and old enemies become allies.

3. “The houses of Achzib shall be a lie to the kings of Israel”

a) The word “Achzib” means “deception”.
b) Thus, the phrase may be rendered “The houses of deception”.
c) The kings of Israel had naively believed that their allied nations would come to their rescue in times of war.
d) The reality was that the treaties were nothing more than lies.
e) These allied nations would not be able to provide the kind of support Israel and Judah needed.
i) The allied nations had problems of their own.
ii) They were not very strong nations for they were on the wane even as Babylon arose as the new empire.
iii) The allied nations selfishly thought of themselves first and not Israel and Judah.

Deception was a game played by many nations when they sent out their envoys to negotiate!