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The Micah Story

A Morality Tale in the Book of Judges


E. Aydeet Mueller

The author of the Micah story was probably active in the wake of the fall of Jerusalem in 587 B.C.E. Calling into question recent understandings that highlight the Micah story in the book of Judges as a piece of political polemic, this book ascribes the text to a morality teacher standing firmly in the deuteronomic tradition. Idolatrous, immoral, fearful, and alienated from God, the protagonists do what is emphatically forbidden in the book of Deuteronomy. The moral of the Micah story: do not act like the protagonists, return to God, practice covenant loyalty, and remember that God never breaks the covenant with the people.