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Micah 7:18-20


7:18 There is no other God like you! 1 

You 2  forgive sin

and pardon 3  the rebellion

of those who remain among your people. 4 

You do not remain angry forever, 5 

but delight in showing loyal love.

7:19 You will once again 6  have mercy on us;

you will conquer 7  our evil deeds;

you will hurl our 8  sins into the depths of the sea. 9 

7:20 You will be loyal to Jacob

and extend your loyal love to Abraham, 10 

which you promised on oath to our ancestors 11 

in ancient times. 12 

1 tn Heb “Who is a God like you?” The rhetorical question expects the answer, “No one!”

2 tn Heb “one who.” The prayer moves from direct address (second person) in v. 18a to a descriptive (third person) style in vv. 18b-19a and then back to direct address (second person) in vv. 19b-20. Due to considerations of English style and the unfamiliarity of the modern reader with alternation of persons in Hebrew poetry, the entire section has been rendered as direct address (second person) in the translation.

3 tn Heb “pass over.”

4 tn Heb “of the remnant of his inheritance.”

5 tn Heb “he does not keep hold of his anger forever.”

6 tn The verb יָשׁוּב (yashuv, “he will return”) is here used adverbially in relation to the following verb, indicating that the Lord will again show mercy.

7 tn Some prefer to read יִכְבֹּס (yikhbos, “he will cleanse”; see HALOT 459 s.v. כבס pi). If the MT is taken as it stands, sin is personified as an enemy that the Lord subdues.

8 tn Heb “their sins,” but the final mem (ם) may be enclitic rather than a pronominal suffix. In this case the suffix from the preceding line (“our”) may be understood as doing double duty.

9 sn In this metaphor the Lord disposes of Israel’s sins by throwing them into the waters of the sea (here symbolic of chaos).

10 tn More literally, “You will extend loyalty to Jacob, and loyal love to Abraham.

11 tn Heb “our fathers.” The Hebrew term refers here to more distant ancestors, not immediate parents.

12 tn Heb “which you swore [or, “pledged”] to our fathers from days of old.”

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