1 There was a man who lived in the hill country of Ephraim. His name was Micah. 2 He said to his mother, ‘I know about the 1,100 pieces of silver that somebody took from you. You cursed the person who had robbed you and I heard you. Look! Here are the pieces of silver. I took them myself. But now I am giving them back to you.’
His mother said, ‘Thank you, my son. I pray that the Lord will bless you.’
3 When Micah gave the 1,100 pieces of silver back to his mother, she said, ‘I will now give this silver to the Lord. We will use it to make an image and a metal idol. In that way, I will give it back to you, my son.’
4 So Micah's mother took 200 pieces of silver. She gave them to a man who used silver to make things. He made an image and an idol for her. She put them in Micah's house.
5 Micah had a special room to worship his gods. He made an ephod and some more idols for it. He chose one of his sons to be a priest to serve his gods.
6 At that time, Israel had no king to rule over them. Everyone did what they thought was right.
Micah and the Levite
7 There was a young man who lived in Bethlehem, a town in Judah. He was a Levite. 8 He left Bethlehem to look for another place to live. As he travelled in the hill country of Ephraim, he arrived at Micah's house.
9 Micah asked him, ‘Where have you come from?’ The man replied, ‘I am a Levite who was living in Bethlehem in Judah. Now I am looking for a new place to live.’ 10 Micah said, ‘Stay here with me. You will be my advisor and my priest. I will pay you 10 pieces of silver each year, as well as your clothes and food.’
11 So the Levite agreed to stay with Micah. He became like a son for Micah. 12 Micah gave the young man what he needed. The Levite became Micah's priest and he lived in Micah's home. 13 Then Micah said, ‘Now I know that the Lord will bless me, because I have this Levite as my own priest.’