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The Book of Malachi
Chapter 4

The Jews Reproved for Their Disobedience Malachi 4:1-6

Malachi 4:1 For, behold, the day cometh, that shall burn as an oven; and all the proud, yea, and all that do wickedly, shall be stubble: and the day that cometh shall burn them up, saith the Lord of hosts, that it shall leave them neither root nor branch. (KJV)

There is a day coming when all proud and evil people will face the Lord’s wrath against all wickedness. The day of judgment will be like a burning furnace. This is a reference to Second Coming of Christ. Those who do wickedly (unbelievers), who do not fear God’s anger, shall certainly feel His fury. The day cometh (Mal.3:2; 2 Pet.3:7), meaning the Day of the Lord (Isa.13:9; Joel 2:1,11,31).

In the Book of Revelation we read that at one fatal swoop one-fourth of the population of the world will be wiped out (Rev.6:8). This verse has absolutely NOTHING to do with the false doctrine that death ends everything for the unsaved, that death for the unsaved is annihilation. That is a "damnable heresy" (2 Pet.2:1). The Bible in NO way teaches that.

The Bible teaches that the body goes into the grave whether a person is lost or saved (Luke 16:19-31). Your soul and spirit go into eternity, either to Heaven OR to Hell. This verse teaches that the unsaved (the wicked) are to be judged at the Great White Throne Judgment and removed from the Earth’s scene (Rev.20:11-15).

Malachi 4:2 But unto you that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings; and ye shall go forth, and grow up as calves of the stall. (KJV)

The Sun of Righteousness in the Old Testament is the same Person as the Bright and Morning Star in the New Testament. Rev. 22:16 I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches. I am the root and the offspring of David, and the bright and morning star. (KJV) . . . When we fear His Name, our growth shall be as calves of the stall, well fed and cared for.

God’s wrath toward the wicked will burn like a furnace, but He will be like the healing warmth of the sun to those who love and obey Him. John the Baptist prophesied that with Jesus’ coming, the dawn would break with light for those in sin’s darkness (Luke 1:76-79). In Isaiah 60:20 and Rev. 21:23-24, He tells us that no light will be needed in the Holy City, because God Himself will be the light.

These last verses of the Old Testament are filled with great hope. No matter how bad life looks now, God controls the future, and everything will be made completely RIGHT by Him one day. We who have loved and served God look forward to a joyful celebration. This hope for the future is ours only when we trust Christ with our lives.

Malachi 4:3 And ye shall tread down the wicked; for they shall be ashes under the soles of your feet in the day that I shall do this, saith the Lord of hosts. (KJV)

The saints can triumph because of God’s victories. We can do nothing on our own, but God does it for us. Another day is coming, far more dreadful to all that work wickedness than any in the past (Mat.24:21). Consider how great the happiness of TRUE believers, when they go from the darkness and misery of this world, into the Light and bliss of our permanent Home, to rejoice in the Lord and serve Him for ever!

Malachi 4:4 Remember ye the law of Moses my servant, which I commanded unto him in Horeb for all Israel, with the statutes and judgments. (KJV)

The laws that were given to Moses at Horeb (Mount Sinai), were the foundation of Israel’s civil, moral, and ceremonial life (Ex.20; Deut. 4:5-6). When Jesus died on the cross, He fulfilled the Law. We no longer are under the Ten Commandments. Jesus gave us new commandments to live by, TWO of them.

Matthew 22:37-40 Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. [38] This is the first and great commandment. [39] And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. [40] On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets. (KJV) . . . But these two laws cover everything in the Ten Commandments and the prophets sayings. LOVE is our law!

Malachi 4:5 Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord: (KJV)

Elijah was one of the greatest prophets who ever lived. See 1 Kings 17 through 2 Kings 2 for his story.

After Malachi died, the voice of God’s prophets would be silent for 400 years. Then a prophet would come, like Elijah, to get people ready for Christ’s Coming (Mat. 17:10-13; Luke 1:17). This prophet was John the Baptist. John prepared people’s hearts for Jesus by urging people to repent of their sins. Christ’s First Coming would bring unity and peace, but also judgment on those who refused to turn from their sins. But this verse tells us that God will send Elijah before the Second Coming of Christ (Rev.11). Elijah never died (2 Kings 2:1,11), and all must die once (Heb.9:27). Elijah shall die in the Great Tribulation Period (Rev.11:7-8), before Christ’s Return (Zec.14:1-4; Rev.19:11-21).

Malachi 4:6 And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse. (KJV)

His (Elijah’s) preaching will turn the hearts of parents to their children, and the hearts of children to their parents. John the Baptist preached repentance and renewal, as Elijah had done and will do. The turning of souls to God was their duty, and ours! This is the best preparation of them for the great and dreadful day of the Lord. The Jewish nation, by wickedness, laid themselves open to the curse. God was ready to bring ruin upon them. He sent John the Baptist to preach repentance to them. He will send Elijah one day. But there will be those who will turn NOT to Him. NO one can expect to escape the curse of God or to enjoy the happiness of His chosen and redeemed people, unless their hearts are turned from sin and this world, to Christ and holiness.

Here is a solemn conclusion to this prophecy, and also the Old Testament. Our conscience (Holy Spirit) tells us how God wants us to live. We no longer have the prophets, but we DO have God’s Word! Let us stay in close fellowship with our blessed Lord. Let us stay close to His sacred Word, through which this Sun of Righteousness shines upon the souls of His people. Let us keep our faith, firmly believing the TRUE Gospel of Christ (2 Cor.11:4). Let us never tire and keep watching for His blessed Return. Let us reach out to others that they might be spared the horrid wrath and curse of Almighty God. Let us yearn for Christ to complete our salvation (Heb.12:2). He is the Author and Finisher of our faith.

The last word of the Old Testament is curse. The curse came when Adam and Eve were in the Garden of Eden and disobeyed God. At that time God said that the ground would be cursed and that the curse would rest upon them. The curse was sin, and it will not be removed until the Lord comes to this Earth the second time. SIN is still in the human family today. All you have to do is to look around you to see that. If you are living in a place where you do not have grasshoppers, locusts, snails, termites or some kind of blight eating away at whatever you are trying to raise . . . whether it is vegetables, flowers or trees . . . then you must have moved into the Millennium. And if you are living in a community where there is no sin, I’d have to say that you have are already in the Millennium. But I know, and you know (if you are honest) that, as we look around today, we can SEE that the curse of sin is still upon the human race and upon this Earth.

Closing Comments

Following this prophecy by God's messenger Malachi, God will be silent. Another Zechariah [Zacharias] will appear 400 years later. He will be serving in the temple when the angel Gabriel will appear to him and announce the birth of John the Baptist (Luke 1:5–25). It is then that the silence of the 400 years will then be broken.

Malachi gives us practical guidelines about our commitment to God. God always deserves the best we have to offer (Mal.1:7-10). We must be willing to change our wrong ways of living (Mal.2:1-2). We should welcome God’s refining process in our lives (Mal.3:3). God allows NO room for pride (Mal.3:13-15). Malachi closes his messages by pointing to that great final day of judgment (Rev.20:11-15). For all those who love God and are committed to Him, Judgment Day will be a day of joy because it places us in God’s Presence for eternity. But all those who have ignored or rejected God will be stubble, to be burned up (Mal.4:1). To help the people prepare for that day of judgment, God would send a prophet like Elijah (John the Baptist), who would prepare the way for Jesus, the Messiah. The New Testament begins with John the Baptist calling the people to turn from their sins and to God. A personal commitment to God demands great sacrifice on our part, but it will be worth it all in the end.

The last word of the Old Testament is curse. The curse came when Adam and Eve disobeyed God. God said that the ground would be cursed and that the curse would rest upon them. The curse was sin, and it will not be removed until the Lord comes to this Earth the second time. Sin is still rampant in the human family today. As we look around, we can see that the curse of sin is upon the human race and upon this Earth.

But the Old Testament does not only close with a curse; it closes with great hope. There is a new and better day coming. Though we are now living in the night of sin, the Sun of Righteousness (the Lord Jesus Christ) will rise and His spiritual light will break through upon us. He is the King who will reign on this Earth, in truth and righteousness.

Today we are seeing the worship of Satan as we’ve never seen it before. Some years ago only 3 % of those interviewed believed in the devil. Recent polls reveal the percentage has jumped to about 50 % who now believe and are convinced that there is a devil. Sad to say, many are not convinced that there is a God to whom they are responsible, a God who will judge them.

The Day of the Lord is coming, and His Kingdom will be established upon the Earth. Psalm 84:11 For the Lord God is a sun and shield: the Lord will give grace and glory: no good thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly. (KJV) . . . But my friend, the Lord God will also stomp out all sin and wickedness!

Do you have hope for the future? If you look back to the past to a historical event that took place over 1900 years ago when Christ died on the cross for sinners like you and me, and if you can trust Him as your Saviour, you can have great hope! You can look to the sunrise because the Bright and Morning Star will appear one of these days. 2 Pet. 1:19 We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts. (KJV). . . This day that will dawn speaks of the Rapture of the church when He will take the church out of the world. The Rapture could take place at any moment in time for there are absolutely NO signs for it at all, but Jesus does give us some warnings to consider (Matthew 23). The day is coming when our Lord Jesus shall appear in the clouds (1 Thes.4:13-18), and take all believers with Him. The Rapture will be the next prophecy to be fulfilled. It is the next event on God's calendar!

Malachi’s main concern was to call priests and people to renew their faithfulness to their covenant with God. He makes it quite clear that there was indifference and corruption in the life and worship of God’s people. They were a dishonest, ungrateful people and an unfaithful priesthood. They failed to respond to divine love (Mal.1:2), and they dishonored God’s Name (Mal.1:6). The priests became stumbling blocks instead of spiritual leaders (Mal.2:1-8). They tried to justify their sins of treacherous dealing with their brethren, inter-marriage with foreigners, divorcing wives, sorcery, impurity, greed, oppression, etc.

On the bright side, Malachi promises the forerunner of the Messiah would come, and also the Coming of the Messiah, the Messenger of the covenant (Mal.3:1-4). He said there would be the outpouring of a great blessing (Mal.3:10-12), and wonderful promises for God’s people (Mal.3:16-18). He also said that Elijah would come before the Day the Lord is ushered in (Mal.4:5-6).

Malachi makes no mention of datable persons or events, as do other prophets. The Book of Malachi is the closing act of the Old Testament. He is the last of many prophets who told of the coming of the Messiah. The Book of Malachi is frequently referred to in the New Testament (Mat.11:10; 17:12; Mark 1:2; 9:11-12; Luke 1:17; Rom.9:13).

The importance of Malachi’s message stands firm for all God’s people, Jew and Gentile alike! Both those in Malachi’s time, and for us today as well. Apostasy, hypocrisy, neglecting God and careless living will have devastating results. Malachi makes that quite clear! Therefore, loving, serving, reverencing and worshiping God must be the chief focal point of our lives, both now and in eternity. If we say we love Him, but do not hold Him dearly in our hearts, we are simply hypocrites. And our Lord Jesus had some nasty things to say about hypocrites (Mat.6:2,5,16; 15:7; 23:13-15,23,25,27,29; 24:51; Mark 7:6). Hypocrites honor Him with their lips, but their heart is far from Him. Hypocrites are like whitewashed tombstones. My friend, God sees your heart! He KNOWS what your true feelings are! Don’t try to lie to Him and don’t snap smart-alek remarks to Him like the people in Malachi’s time. He did NOT put up with it then, and He will NOT put up with it now! Take our sovereign God seriously! It is to your benefit if you do.

There IS a Judgment Day coming! Believe it! . . . http://www.judgmentcoming.org/j_c_judgment_coming.htm

Book of Malachi

Ch.1 . Ch.2 . Ch.3 . Ch.4

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