Book of Malachi Study

Malachi is the final book of the Hebrew Scriptures in terms of chronology (and in terms of arrangement as well when it comes to how the Christian Bible arranges the books of the Old Testament).  It is the Lord’s final prophetic word to the nation of Israel until the forerunner of the Messiah would come on the scene preparing the way for the public ministry of the Messiah.  It was given in approximately 430 BC.

Malachi 1:1-3: This is not speaking of Jacob and Esau as individuals, but rather the people groups descended from Jacob and Esau, that is, the ethnic Jews and the Edomites.  God chose the nation which Jacob’s descendants became (i.e. Israel) to work through to establish His worship among, commit His Scriptures to, and bring forth His Christ or Messiah through.  This only increases the guilt of disobedient Jews due to the greater light they are rejecting and greater opportunity to properly worship God that they are missing through their own sinful choices.  In Romans chapter 9, written several hundred years later, this Scripture will be used as a rebuke to the Jews, right from their own Scriptures, to prove that it is no strange thing that God would cease to work His economy of redemption through the Jewish nation after its rejection of Christ, seeing that He had already chosen not to work that through many of Abraham’s natural descendants.  God’s rebukes to Israel here, especially in relation to the corrupted Levitical Priesthood within it, were striking at the wickedness within the nation which had seeds so strong that it would cause the nation as a whole to reject its Messiah four hundred some years later, and ultimately fall (perhaps about exactly five hundred years after Malachi was written- in terms of at least the Temple being destroyed- and to a greater degree afterwards).  We will see later that the Book of Malachi closes with a warning in relation to this (then) coming judgment.

Malachi 1:4-5: You can read about the judgment of Edom and some of the reasons for that in the Book of Obadiah.  Rather than willingly serve the God of Israel the Edomites were generally haughty idolaters who opposed His worship and magnified themselves against Israel, not because Israel was often wicked, but due to their own arrogance and envy which caused them to be malicious towards Israel no matter Israel’s degree of faithfulness to the Lord and moral condition.  There may be much to loathe about Israel as a nation, and God is about to start exposing these righteous reasons to loathe Israel as we continue in Malachi, yet many have loathed Israel for the same basic bad reason that the Edomites did.  God is about to basically tell the Israelites as we go forward that His special choosing and protection of them as a people should have sparked zeal in them to be faithful to Him and not to learn the ways of the heathen like they did.  At the same time, there was actually even acceptable worship of the true God happening among certain gentiles that was not generally happening in Israel.  This was only increasing Israel’s eventual condemnation and leading to the end of its special place in its appointment of administering the true God’s appointed worship on earth.

Malachi 1:6: Israel’s priests weren’t going around saying “don’t honor God; don’t fear God.”  Yet that is what they were saying by their example.

Malachi 1:7: Again, they were saying this by their example; by what they actually do.  Remember James chapter two.  Our lives must testify that we actually embrace pure Christian doctrine and the Christian prescription for living.  Otherwise, professing faith in Jesus Christ is vain.  Such a faith is dead and cannot save one.

Malachi 1:8: It is true that many people can’t stand their governor now and would give them a lot worse than their leftovers if they could.  Yet God is speaking with the implication that people generally, at least in that day, were in awe of their rulers and would do all in their power to please their governor and not show contempt if their governor were to visit them or make a request of them.  They wouldn’t serve them their table scraps and other contemptible food.  That is how Israel’s priests were treating God’s service.

Malachi 1:9: They were of course already beseeching God that He would be gracious unto them.  Yet such pleas were pointless because they were strategically coming up with ways to shortchange God in terms of offering what He required in order to hold onto more (and better) for themselves.  They were acting like Cain.  And like in His dealing with Cain, God was not going to accept them nor their offerings.  God makes it clear all over the Bible that His mercy is only for those who confess and forsake their transgressions and keep His covenant.

Malachi 1:10: I believe the most likely explanation for this verse is that God is telling the priests that they wouldn’t even shut the doors of the Temple if they weren’t being compensated with payment for doing so.  And yet, they are offering burnt offerings to God which have cost them nothing (and we will see this defined more going forward).  They are insistent on getting their due yet they devise means not to give God what He is due (specifically here, His offerings as He prescribed them).  

Malachi 1:11: All three “shall be”s in this verse are in italics.  That means they are not in the original.  God’s name was already great among the gentiles (or nations).  Verse 14 will say this directly.  He has shown His nature and eternal power to all people from the beginning of time.  Scripture is filled with examples of this.  Many gentiles had already at this point, not just in the future when Christ’s Gospel would come with the fullness of the revelation of the true God, turned from idols and worshiped the true God acceptably (think of Job, think of the Ninevites in the Book of Jonah, etc).  Those who are heathen by birth can become circumcised, faithful worshipers at hearts.  Those who are Jews naturally can be heathen at heart.  These things are all over Scripture, Old and New Testament.  Abraham himself was called from among gentile idolaters.  God reminded Israel of this at times so they wouldn’t think their birth was so noble that they were above the law and unconditionally safe from God’s wrath (like many Jews have thought, and many Jews think to this day).  And the fact that some gentiles forsook their sins and turned to the true God and worshiped Him acceptably with much less light of His ways than the Jews had was (and remains) a massive rebuke to them.  The same can be said to certain degrees of many who were raised in Christian households where (at least) the Bible was very well known.

Malachi 1:12: Again, not by their words, but by what they actually do.  The next verse will elaborate.

Malachi 1:13: Of course not.  His Word forbids such offerings in Leviticus chapter 22 and elsewhere.  King David understood this well and acted accordingly after his spiritual restoration, refusing to offer burnt offerings to the Lord his God of that which cost him nothing (see 2 Samuel 24:24-25).

Malachi 1:14-2:3: Do you think God isn’t serious about His name being dishonored by those who claim to represent Him; or in this case, those who really ought to be His representatives (descendants of the Tribe of Levi through Moses’ brother Aaron who were appointed to the Levitical Priesthood)?  Is it proper to think that God’s zeal for the purity of His name and His severity towards those who transgress against Him, especially in relation to His established worship, are things which we should think do not represent Him properly or things which we should at least not talk about?  The allegedly “loving God” which many talk about would never talk like God talks in these verses.  That all-loving god is a product of vain people’s imaginations.

2:4: God is going to remind Israel in severe ways, and He has already much at this point, that He doesn’t play around with His worship and those who are ministering in it.

2:5: Yes, we should fear God and be afraid before His name.  Exodus 32:25-29 is referenced in verse five.  This is after Moses had come down from the mountain, caught Israel worshiping the Golden Calf in revelry, and inquired about what was going on.  

Exodus 32:25-29: “And when Moses saw that the people were naked; (for Aaron had made them naked unto their shame among their enemies:) Then Moses stood in the gate of the camp, and said, Who is on the Lord’s side?  let him come unto me.  And all the sons of Levi gathered themselves together unto him.  And he said unto them, Thus saith the Lord God of Israel, Put every man his sword by his side, and go in and out from gate to gate throughout the camp, and slay every man his brother, and every man his companion, and every man his neighbor.  And the children of Levi did according to the word of Moses: and there fell of the people that day about three thousand men.  For Moses had said, Consecrate yourselves today to the Lord, even every man upon his son, and upon his brother; that he may bestow upon you a blessing this day.”

I think it’s fair to say that there was a mass of obstinate idolaters, those who were the most instrumental in perpetrating the sin of the Golden Calf, and who were also obstinately contending with Moses when he confronted them.  The Levites were the most zealous to contend with these and kill them (and this was judicial killing- Moses was the political leader of Israel, the highest judge, the Supreme Court of Israel basically at this point, as well as its spiritual leader).

And before Moses died, he testified in Deuteronomy 33:9-11 regarding the tribe of Levi (he’s praying to God): “Who said unto his father and to his mother, I have not seen him; neither did he acknowledge his brethren, nor knew his own children: for they have observed thy word, and kept thy covenant.  They shall teach Jacob thy judgments, and Israel thy law: they shall put incense before thee, and whole burnt sacrifice upon thine altar.  Bless, Lord, his substance, and accept the work of his hands; smite through the loins of them that rise against him, and of them that hate him, that they rise not again.”

Malachi 2:6: This describes the character of every faithful minister of the true God- and this character was displayed to the utmost in the coming Messiah.

Malachi 2:7: Otherwise, the people will be destroyed for lack of knowledge like Hosea 4:6 talks about.  “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children.”

This is very much what God is saying to Israel’s priests as we read through Malachi.

Malachi 2:8: The basis for God giving the covenant of the priesthood to Levi, and afterwards being pleased with Israel’s priests, was not so anymore.

Malachi 2:9: Or, shown partiality in the law.

This was the problem with Jesus’ enemies in the Gospels.  Honest zeal to do what God’s Law requires was not their problem (like many think it was their problem).  Jesus had the most honesty and the most zeal to do what God’s Law requires.  The problem was that Israel’s leaders were making exceptions, qualifications for themselves and others, and they were putting  unnecessary burdens on others, etc. with partiality and also deceiving the people therebyListen to Jesus’ remedy for this.

Matthew 23:1-7: “Then spoke Jesus to the multitude, and to his disciples, Saying The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses’ seat: All therefore whatsoever they bid you observe, that observe and do; but do not ye after their works: for they say, and do not.  For they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, and lay them on men’s shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers.  But all their works they do for to be seen of men: they make broad their phylacteries, and enlarge the borders of their garments, And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues, And greetings in the markets, and to be called of men, Rabbi, Rabbi.”

Malachi 2:10: And transgressing God does indeed hurt other people somehow.

Malachi 2:11: We see what a great problem this had become after the return from the Babylonian captivity in the books of Ezra and Nehemiah.  We see this is still a great problem at the end of Nehemiah, and that was probably very shortly before Malachi was written.  It not only was a great problem in itself, but it reflects the laxity towards God’s Law and lack of steadfastness towards God which was prevalent among Israel and in Jerusalem at this time.  The priests were encouraging this and permitting this.

Malachi 2:12: If you transgress against God you are His enemy and under His wrath even if you’re a spiritual leader (the blind leading the blind in that case), even if you’re a Bible scholar, and/or involved in public worship.

Malachi 2:13: This is definitely a reference in one way or another to the partiality in the law which was in the priests.  It could be a reference to how they partook in unlawful divorce and forbidden marriages of Jews to idolaters by not speaking against these closely related sins.  The women who are practically being cheated on and unjustly put away came to the altar with tears- and the priests yet did nothing- making all their blessings and offerings which they ministered corrupt and unacceptable to God.  

It is perhaps also a reference to the priest’s own participation in this sin and their own phony repentance at the altar which was demonstrated to be phony due to how it was not accompanied by works fitting for, or in keeping with, repentance.  Either way, the priests were surely participating in this sin directly themselves as well as by not rebuking those who participated in it and insisting on real repentance from those known to be in this sin when they came to make an offering at the altar.

Malachi 2:14-16: “Yet had he the residue of the spirit” is a phrase which is hard to find commentators in exact agreement on.  I believe it has something to do with how Adam could not replace Eve of his own accord even though God could have made other women for Adam.  The context at least demands that it is speaking about God’s intention that marriage be between one man and one woman, and that the marriage should last until death parts them.  This is said in relation to how that is the best situation for raising godly children.  

Note that the context here is a warning to the man, and we could apply it to the wife with her husband too, that they do not deal treacherously against their spouse.  That is the context which Jesus also spoke about divorce and remarriage within the Gospel accounts.  That was the context in which Israel’s leaders were misleading them in this area.  

So, this is not saying that one who has been dealt treacherously against, one unjustly put away or whose spouse is so wicked that they cannot even raise godly children together due to the corruption in their own home, this is not saying these do not have recourse like many now teach by twisting Jesus’ words in the Gospels outside of their Biblical historical context.  Those who have been unjustly put away can lawfully remarry if they choose.  Those who need to put away their spouse in honesty for the purity of their home can do so- and then lawfully remarry if they choose.  God’s Law gives recourse for putting away when the purity of the home really demands it.  What Malachi is rebuking is what Jesus rebuked in the Gospels.  This involves people defiling their home by unlawful putting away and remarriage- in this case, remarriage to heathen idolaters.  Hear the law which, we’re about to see, the Messiah would come to vindicate and rebuke according to.

Deuteronomy 24:1-2: “When a man hath taken a wife, and married her, and it come to pass that she find no favor in his eyes, because he hath found some uncleanness in her (this is speaking about a real moral uncleanness): then let him write her a bill of divorcement, and give it in her hand, and send her out of his house.  And when she is departed out of his house, she may go and be another man’s wife.”

The man who has put away the woman over the (legitimate moral) uncleanness which he has found in her can obviously marry a godly woman then. 

God hates putting away.  Therefore, He hates unjust putting away and He hates cases where one partner’s sin causes the other to have to put them away in order to keep their home pure (when the offender doesn’t initiate the putting away themselves).  Those who don’t make the distinction between just and unjust putting away, though the Scriptures themselves acknowledge and define such a distinction, are unjust themselves, they damage homes, and they cause much misery.

Malachi 2:17: This surely describes most church leaders today to some significant degree as they give themselves and those in their congregations false security of God’s pleasure and salvation as they live in sin and aren’t careful to walk in the light of God’s Word.

Proverbs 28:4 says: “They that forsake the law praise the wicked: but such as keep the law contend with them.”

Proverbs 17:15 says: “ He that justifieth the wicked, and he that condemneth the just, even they both are abomination to the Lord.”

And yet, the God of Judgment is coming.  

We see in the coming verses that the Messiah Himself is that God of Judgment and that His coming will not be pleasant as He rebukes, and purifies those which endure that rebuke, according to God’s law.

3:1a:This is a reference to John the Baptist.

3:1b: And we’ve talked in other studies how God had said in Haggai chapter two that it would be the second Temple that the Messiah, the Lord, would come to.  That Temple was destroyed in AD 70.  We know the righteous mayhem that was unleashed on the (at least) two occasions which Jesus cleansed the Temple.  However, Jesus also taught much in the Temple besides and visited the Temple at least three times a year  (like God’s Law commanded of all Jewish males) even before His public ministry started when He was about thirty years old.

Malachi 3:2-4: The offering would be in righteousness because it would be in accordance with God’s Law.  Christians are still bound to God’s moral law and the principles involved in the Mosaic ceremonies due to how they teach us how to properly relate to God through Jesus Christ.  Also consider here that the earliest Christians were faithful ethnic Jews who still kept the Mosaic ceremonies for 40 years, between the birth of the Christian church at Pentecost in about AD 30 until (at least very shortly before) the destruction of the Temple in AD 70, with the proper attitude towards them (they were always intended to teach us key spiritual lessons, they were always intended to be kept from a living faith before God and never intended as a means of earning justification like many Jews wrongly took them as).  Many of those faithful Christians in the first century among the Jewish nation were Levitical Priests.  We read about many priests being obedient to the Christian faith in Acts chapter 6.  So, even without the fact that the Christian church is the spiritual Israel factored in, in relation to the many (though far from the majority) faithful Christians in Israel between AD 30 and AD 70, the offering of Judah and Jerusalem was indeed pleasant unto the Lord in that time as in former years.  There was indeed much true revival and restoration, though not enough on the scale to spare the nation as a whole from eventual ultimate judgment.  The quality is what matters in relation to this verse and why it was indeed fulfilled.

Malachi 3:5 :Don’t interpret Jesus in the Gospels contrary to God’s Law then.  And Jesus Himself warned not to do this right off the bat in His public ministry at several places in the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew chapters five to seven (the very words of His from the Gospel accounts which are the most abused and put in opposition to God’s Law by the unlearned and unstable).

Malachi 3:6: God’s character doesn’t change, His morality therefore does not change, and He has never become more or less merciful.  God’s description of Himself to Moses describes Him yesterday, today, and forever.  If God were not long-suffering, God would have finished with Israel long ago at this point in Malachi.  And yet that patience did not last perpetually- and the judgment that came has affected their children.  The same is true overall regarding God’s general dealings with mankind.

Exodus 34:5-7: “And the Lord descended in the cloud, and stood with him (Moses) there, and proclaimed the name of the Lord.  And the Lord passed by before him, and proclaimed, The Lord, The Lord God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abundant in goodness and truth,  Keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, and that will by no means clear the guilty; visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children, and upon the children’s children, unto the third and to the fourth generation.”

Malachi 3:7: A righteous person might ask the same question if they were being unjustly accused of unrighteousness.  Yet this was asked by people either pretending not to know when they did know or being willfully ignorant and/or lackadaisical to the point where it was their own fault that they didn’t know.  

Malachi 3:8: God had instituted a tithe system for Israel which was intended to support the priests and the Levites in their duties ministering in the Temple and teaching God’s Word to Israel.  You can see in the Book of Nehemiah how Nehemiah was zealous to get this system operating, yet the people were not always diligent in cooperating.  Perhaps by now it wasn’t really operating at all.  Things can break down badly in just a few years.  Understand that though it is proper to give at least a tenth of one’s income away for godly purposes, the law of the tithe given to Israel through Moses was specifically for Israel as a nation when God’s worship was centered there.  Passages like this get abused often by covetous preachers looking to fleece people out of money to enhance their own lifestyle.  We’ve done another study recently about how even though the Apostle Paul did give the example of ministers at the Temple living of the Temple (largely paid for through the tithes of the people), there are times when greater principles supersede this and make it improper for ministers in the church to live off of donations from those in the congregation they are ministering to.  And often, those benefiting from tithes now are living much better than many who are giving the tithes.  And that is definitely wicked and  improper.  But yes, we can rob God by not giving Him back what rightfully belongs to Him.  I say giving Him back because no one has first given to Him that He should have to repay it.

Malachi 3:9-10: It is not tempting God to test Him when (and wherein) He has invited you to do so.

Malachi 3:11-12: How do we relate this statement, one that obviously references Deuteronomy chapter 28 which talks about God blessing or cursing Israel based upon whether it is obedient to Him, to Christians now?  That is a common question.  

Deuteronomy chapter 28 was directly for Israel on a national level under the Old Covenant.  The principles there apply to individuals regarding obtaining grace and redemption, but the curses and blessings in an earthly sense were ultimately intended to apply to Israel as a nation and to be reaped by Israel corporately as a nation.  Consider: Wicked Israelites prospered during David and Solomon’s reigns even though God’s covenant Abraham did not apply to them on an individual level.  Righteous Israelites like Jeremiah and Ezekiel also suffered when God’s wrath was upon Israel, even though God’s covenant with Abraham applied to them as individuals.  God did take special care of them still, but prosperity was not their lot.  Consider also that there is a sense in which individuals often prosper or suffer adversity based upon whether their nation is currently reaping the blessings of righteous people who are living in it or who have lived in it; or whether it is reaping God’s judgment based upon its past and current wickedness.  Proverbs 14:34 says: “Righteousness exalteth a nation: but sin is a reproach to any people.”  

Malachi 3:13-14: Once again, it is not that they were necessarily saying this out loud.  Their actions testified that they believed this.  And so did their affections.  We see that immediately as we continue forward.  Apply what we’re about to read to our day.  And if you’re going to apply this to politics, there is not a mainstream political party in America whose supporters are not rebuked in the following verse.  

Malachi 3:15: Or, blessed- in contrast to the characteristics of the blessed which Jesus spoke about in the Gospel accounts.

The rebuke here applies to the fans of Hollywood entertainers, of sports stars, of many popular musicians, and on a whole previously unprecedented level to the supporters of modern Sodom with its novel views on marriage and its wickedly innovative transgender indoctrination of children (featuring things like the now common trannytime story sessions).  It applies to the followers of the vast majority of spiritual leaders in Christendom.  It applies to those who are pro-open borders, pro welfare state, and pro-overall leniency on crime and dereliction of duty.  It also applies to supporters of modern Israel as Israel has presumptuously taken back the land which God kicked them out of and massively oppressed those who came to lawfully inhabit it.  The land which we’ll soon see, they were expelled from by God’s own decree, due to their wickedness and rejection of their King who was sent to deliver them from their sins.  

Those who have the very same spirit of the modern Zionists are rebuked here for justifying, exalting, and delivering popular evil Jews (like the modern Zionist leaders and propagandists) from the just punishment due to them.

Malachi 3:16: Those who truly fear the Lord are grieved by the condition of society which has just been described.  They ought to speak often one to another to encourage one another in righteousness, and those who truly fear the Lord will be drawn towards each other for this reason.  No one cannot separate properly remembering and regarding God’s name from doing this.  God takes note of those who so fear Him and think upon His name.  He will bless them and spare them according to their righteous purpose and endeavors.

Malachi 3:17: Or, special treasure.

God will act towards these as a loving father does towards a faithful, obedient son.  He will spare them when His judgment comes.  We’ll get into that more shortly.  He will also spare them from partaking in the evil around them as they continue in His fear.  He will bless them with the sharp discernment that is necessary in extremely perilous times.  I believe that this verse and the following verse have applications both before and after judgment hits a wicked society.

Malachi 3:18-Malachi 4:1: This applies to God bringing destruction to Jerusalem, the Temple, and the land of Israel through the Romans in the latter first and second centuries AD.  It also applies to the eternal fire of hell for the wicked who transgress against God (as is proven right from the Hebrew Scriptures in Daniel chapter 12 and Isaiah chapter 66).  The fact that the former judgment has happened more concretely certifies that the latter judgment is sure to happen.  Heeding Jesus’ warning about what to do when Jerusalem is compassed with armies spared the Christians in the land from the former judgment.  There was a shocking, unexplained withdrawal of the Romans after their initial compassing of Jerusalem which gave the Christians opportunity to escape into what is basically now the country of Jordan.  

Malachi 4:2: This applies to the Messiah’s first coming to accomplish His mission of redeeming His people from their sins.  It also applies to His ultimate return when He comes to transform His people into their resurrection bodies and gather them into His kingdom to rule and reign with Him over the nations with a rod of iron.

Related to this, we read in Luke 2:36-38 (this is right as or right after Jesus was being dedicated in the Temple): “And there was one Anna, a prophetess, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Aser (Asher): she was of a great age, and had lived with an husband seven years from her virginity; And she was a widow of about fourscore and four years, which departed not from the temple, but served God with fastings and prayers night and day.  And she coming in that instant gave thanks likewise unto the Lord, and spoke of him to all them that looked for redemption in Jerusalem.”

Sadly, someone can have a name like Anna and actually be like the Jezebel of the Bible.  Someone can have a name like Paul and instead be like the Ahab of the Bible.  Yet even though it is much more difficult to overcome a wicked namesake than it is to not live according to a righteous one, someone who is actually named Ahab or Jezebel can follow in the footsteps of the Paul or Anna of Scripture.  If you study the list of the names of the Christians greeted in Romans chapter 16, especially if you look up what some of those names actually mean in the Greek, you’ll see that there is indeed hope for you if your parents did name you something like Ahab, Cain, Goliath, Jezebel, or Delilah.  And the Christians with the heathen namesakes didn’t change their names either.  I find that very interesting.

Malachi 4:3: Psalm 147:5-6: “Great is our Lord, and of great power: his understanding is infinite.  The Lord lifteth up the meek: he casteth the wicked down to the ground.”

Malachi 4:4: Or, Sinai.

Though God shouldn’t have to make it clear at this point, He mercifully does anyways.  God doesn’t change and His Law does not change.  He did not give Israel a “new law” at any point.

Malachi 4:5: This is referring to John the Baptist who came in the spirit and power of Elijah as the angel Gabriel told John’s father Zacharias in Luke 1:17.  

Jesus Himself said of John the Baptist in Matthew 11:10-15: “For this is he, of whom it is written, Behold, I send my messenger before thy face, which shall prepare thy way before thee.  Verily I say unto you, Among them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist: notwithstanding he that is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.  And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffereth violence, and the violent take it by force.  For all the prophets and the law prophesied until John.  And if ye will receive it, this is Elias (Elijah), which was for to come.  He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.”

Those who don’t receive that Jesus is the Messiah, and those who don’t receive Him saying that John the Baptist was Elijah (not because John was the reincarnation of Elijah, but because of the character and strength of his ministry), these reject plain evidence from God’s Word anyways.  Be assured that these would not have received Elijah and stood with him against the idolatry and overall corruption of his time if they had lived when Elijah lived.  God Himself testified to Elijah that only about 7, 000 Israelites stood with him on God’s side.  Jesus and His disciples frequently rebuked Israel, especially its religious leaders, for being at odds with the heroes of their own Scriptures whom they professed to honor and follow in the footsteps of.  Such a profession of honor is easy to give to them when such heroes are dead and the ones who are actually following in their footsteps confronting your evil deeds and overall enmity with God are no-names.  

The same can obviously be said of modern Christendom, especially its leaders, in relation to Jesus Christ, His Apostles, and those no-names who rebuke the sins of modern Christendom and actually receive the Word of God and wholeheartedly strive to walk in the light of authentic Biblical Christianity.

Malachi 4:6: Though derelict parenting and dishonor of parents were probably problems in Israel due to how overall corrupt it was, this is not saying that fixing these issues is the key to God’s wrath being turned away from Israel.  This is rather, at least primarily, a reference to turning the nation to an agreement at heart with its godly forefathers Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob so that it could not be properly said, like it could be said in truth, that Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob would be ashamed of what Israel has fallen to.  

Jesus said in Matthew 8:11-12: “And I say unto you, That many shall come from the east and west, and shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven. But the children of the kingdom (this is referring to ethnic Jews, the natural heirs to the kingdom whose inheritance is not given unconditionally, the context is clear that’s whom Jesus is speaking of) shall be cast out into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”

Regarding the clear majority of the nation and its leaders, this turning did not happen, the earth was indeed smitten with a curse through the Romans, the nation ended, and God’s appointed worship is not committed to the nation anymore.  It is a barren fig tree.  The Jews may have invaded the land again, claiming that the bitterness of death is past; and they may have the support of most wicked and/or naive professing Christians- but they will not prosper over the long haul.  The Jews are a people at enmity yet with the Lord, not a people in His grace, as they reject their Messiah Jesus Christ and grab at an inheritance which they are not qualified to receive (making them even greater thieves and oppressors).  They did not get back into that land by the true God.  You are not siding with the Lord by supporting them in their enmity with Jesus Christ.  Be sure of that.

Jesus said in Matthew 23:37-39: “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not!  Behold, your house is left unto you desolate.  For I say unto you, Ye shall not see me henceforth, till ye shall say, Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord.”

The following basically happened through the Romans (as Malachi 4:6 warned) even after it had happened through the Babylonians.  Don’t think God has changed His mind over His past judgments and wouldn’t do something similar again to Israel as they provoke Him now in a similar way (and likely worse) to how they provoked Him then.

Ezekiel 6:11-12: “Thus saith the Lord God; Smite with thine hand, and stamp with thy foot, and say, Alas for all the evil abominations of the house of Israel!  for they shall fall by the sword, by the famine, and by the pestilence.  He that is far off shall die of the pestilence; and he that is near shall fall by the sword; and he that remaineth and is besieged shall die by the famine: thus will I accomplish my fury upon them.”

Aaron’s email is: [email protected]