At the beginning of chapter 5, a young child appears who will lead the people to victory. He is born in Beit Lechem of Efrat in Yehuda. The city of Beit Lechem, which means ‘House of Bread,’ sits five miles south of Yerushalayim. In this verse, Efrat is either another name for Beit Lechem or refers to the larger district in which it is found. The present day city of Efrat was established in 1983, adjacent to the Beit Lechem, and is home to over 8,000 residents. Micha writes that Beit Lechem is in Yehuda, to distinguish it from another city called Beit Lechem in the north of the country in the territory of Zevulun (Joshua 19:15). The young one is described as “Least among the clans of Yehuda,” but nevertheless, “he will deliver us from Assyria” (verse 5). Micha’s allusion to King David, the youngest of all his brothers who nevertheless brought salvation from Israel’s enemies, is unmistakable. Indeed, this young lad will be a descendant of King David, son of “Yishai of Beit Lechem” (I Samuel 16:1).
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