Malachi Prophesied of God’s Wrath

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Ingratitued of Israel Malachi

Malachi wrote this oracle in 433 B.C., King Artaxerxes was King of Persia; Nehemiah was his servant.  Nehemiah later returns to Jerusalem to learn the Jews fell into sin once more. The Sabbath was broken, intermarriage with foreigners, priests were corrupt. Malachi condemns the Jews for their sins in his oracle; the last book of the Old Testament.

Malachi 1:8- “When you bring blind animals for sacrifice, is that not wrong? When you sacrifice crippled or diseased animals, is that not wrong? Try offering them to your governor! Would he be pleased with you? Would he accept you?” says the Lord.

vs-13- “When you bring injured, crippled or diseased animals and offer them as sacrifices, should I accept them from your hands?” says the Lord. 14- Cursed is the cheat who has an acceptable male in his flock and vows to give it, but then sacrifices a blemished animal to the Lord. For I am a great King,” says the Lord Almighty, “and my name is to be feared among the nations.”

Malachi is condemning the Jews for the animals they are bringing before the altar for sacrifices. Moses was specific; the animals that were to be sacrificed to the Lord for offerings were to be without defect.

[2:1-3] 1- “And now this admonition is for you, O priest. 2- If you do not listen, and if you do not set your heart to honor my name,” says the Lord Almighty, “I will send a curse upon you, and curse your blessings. Yes, I have already cursed them, because you have not set your heart to honor me. 3- Because of you I will rebuke your descendants; I will spread on your faces the offal from the festival sacrifices, and you will be carried off with it.

vs-8-“But you have turned from the way and by your teaching have caused many to stumble; you have violated the covenant with Levi,” says the Lord Almighty. 9- “So I have caused you to be despised and humiliated before all the people, because you have not followed my ways but have shown partiality in matters of the law.”

Malachi rebukes the Jewish priests for their false teachings and for not honoring the Lord with their lives. God was sending curses upon them for leading their flocks astray with their teachings; also cursing their blessings.

[3:7] -“Ever since the time of your forefathers you have turned away from my decrees and have not kept them. Return to me, and I will return to you,” says the Lord Almighty. “But you ask, ‘How are we to return?’ 8- “Will a man rob God? Yet you rob me. “But you ask, ‘How do we rob you?’ “In tithes and offerings. 9- You are under a curse—the whole nation of you—because you are robbing me. 10- Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me on this,” says the Lord Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessings that you will not have room enough for it. 11- I will prevent pests from devouring your crops, and the vines in your fields will not cast their fruit,” says the Lord Almighty. 12- Then all the nations will call you blessed, for yours will be a delightful land,” says the Lord God Almighty.

[13] “You have said harsh things against me,” says the Lord. “Yet you ask, What have we said against you?” 14- “You have said, ‘It is futile to serve God. What did we gain by carrying out his requirements and going about like mourners before the Lord Almighty? 15- But now we call the arrogant blessed. Certainly the evildoers prosper, and even those who challenge God escape.’”

The Jews needed to return to the Lord as Malachi strongly counsels, to end the generational curses. The priests needed to honor the Lord with their lives and their teachings. The Jews needed to return to the practices taught by the laws of Moses; to bring food to the church and to bring proper animals to the priests to be sacrificed before the Lord. Malachi warns them to return to the Lord!

God's wrath on Israel Malachi

The Day of the Lord

Malachi 4:1-3- “Surely the day is coming; it will burn like a furnace. All the arrogant and every evildoer will be stubble, and that day that is coming will set them on fire,” says the Lord Almighty. “Not a root or branch will be left to them. 2- But for you who revere my name, the sun of righteousness will rise with healing in its wings. And you will go out and leap like calves released from the stall. 3- Then you will trample down the wicked; they will be ashes under the soles of your feet on the day when I do these things,” says the Lord Almighty.

Malachi warns; the day is coming when the Lord will say—no more. His wrath will burn against the wicked. But also, at the same time, the Lord will lift up those Jews who revere his name, who walk by righteousness.

This was how the Lord dealt with Jerusalem Jews and priests, 433 B.C.—during the Old Testament.

Malachi was the last prophet of the old testament. God was silent for four hundred years after Malachi wrote his oracle.

The next time God was heard from was when the Word became Flesh. Jesus, the Son of God, walked the earth and became the perfect lamb. Sacrificed on the cross for all mankind’s sins. Jesus was the final, perfect, sinless sacrifice for all our sins. There is no need for animal sacrifices for sins because of Jesus.

Hebrews 10:8-10- First he said, “Sacrifices and offerings, burnt offerings and sin offerings you did not desire, nor were you pleased with them” (although the law required them to be made). 9- Then he said, “Here I am, I have come to do your will.” He sets aside the first to establish the second. 10- And by that will, we have been made holy through the sacrifice of the body of Jesus Christ once and for all.

Have you accepted Jesus’ sacrificed body for your sins?  Jesus paid the ultimate price for you?  He made everything right between you and a righteous God? Jesus did this for you. But, you must accept the gift freely. Believe that he died on that cruel cross for your sins. Believe that he went to hell in your place. Believe that on the third day, God raised him up out of hell and the grave and now he sets at the right hand of the Father in heaven. Believe that Christ took your punishment for your sins; paid in full.

If you truly believe this, and you want eternal life in heaven rather than in hell with Satan, then pray this prayer. Lord God, I am truly sorry for my sins. I believe Jesus died on the cross for my sins. Please forgive my sins. I want to make Jesus my Lord and Savior. Take control of the throne of my life. Make me the kind of person you want me to be. I declare Jesus, you are my Lord. In Jesus name  pray. A-men.

If you prayed this prayer, you are now a child of God. Born again. The scriptures tell us that all of heaven is celebrating you right now. There is shouting, cheering, yelling, all throughout heaven, all because of you. The joy is overflowing.

As a new believer, we are called to study the bible, pray, and attend church to learn about God and grow with other believers. We are also called to take communion regularly.

If you prayed this prayer to rededicate your life to Christ, praise the Lord! Pray for God to show you where He wants to use you in his kingdom, for his glory. Don’t be surprised if he requires you to grow and change as a person and in your faith. That is also part of the journey.

I pray that God will use you for His glory,

JA The Tested

 

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Has Satan Lured You Away From God?

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Aaron and Golden Calf

The Israelites worship a golden calf at the base of Mount Sinai

Genesis 15:13-14- Then the Lord said to Abraham, “Know for certain that your descendants will be strangers in a country not their own, and they will be enslaved and mistreated for four hundred years. 14- But I will punish the nation they serve as slaves, and afterwards they will come out with great possessions.

Exodus 3:1- Now Moses was attending the flock of Jethro, his father –in-law, the priest of Midian.

2- There the angel of the Lord appeared to him in flames of fire from within a bush. Moses saw that through the bush was on fire, it did not burn up.

4-God called to him, “Moses! Moses!  and Moses answered, “Here I am.”

5- “Do not come any closer,” God said. “Take off your sandals, for the place you are standing is holy ground.” 6- I am the God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, the God of Jacob.”

7-The Lord said, “I have indeed seen the misery of my people in Egypt. I have heard them crying out because of their slave drivers, and I am concerned about their suffering.

10- “So now, go. I am sending you to Pharaoh to bring my people the Israelites out of Egypt.”

13- Suppose I go to the Israelites and say to them, “The God of your fathers has sent me to you, and they ask me, what is his name?

14- God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM. I AM has sent you.”

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So Moses agreed reluctantly. God sent a helper in Aaron. Together they went before the Pharaoh and asked him to let the Lord’s people go. When he refused, the Lord released plagues upon Egypt.

1- He turned the water into blood.  2- Frogs- 3-Gnats 4- Flies 5-Diseased livestock 6-Boils- 7- Thunderstorm of hail and fire 8-Locust 9-Darkness for three days- 10-Death of the First born

The scriptures tell us that God hardened Pharaoh’s heart so he refused Moses so that God could show His glory through Pharaoh. (Exodus 11:10- Moses and Aaron performed all these wonders before Pharaoh, but the Lord hardened Pharaoh’s heart, and would not let the Israelites go out of this country.)

Finally Pharaoh agrees, after the death of his son. (Exodus 12: 31-32 During the night Pharaoh summoned Moses and Aaron and said, “Up! Leave my people, you and the Israelites! Go, worship the Lord as you have requested. 32- Take your flocks and herds, as you have said, and go. And bless me.”)

He frees the Israelites. They must leave quickly.

Soon, Pharaoh pursues with his army.

The Israelites saw with their own eyes God’s mighty hand.( Exodus 14:19-20- Then the angel of God, who had been traveling in front of Israel’s army, withdrew and went behind them. The pillar of cloud also moved from in front and stood behind them, 20- coming between the armies of Egypt and Israel. Throughout the night the cloud brought darkness to the side and light to the other side; so neither went near the other all night long.

Then God parts the Red Sea. Later, God brings water out of stones in the desert.

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On Mount Sinai, the Lord gave Moses the Ten Commandments.

Moses was gone on the mountain a long time. The Israelites fell into temptation.  (Exodus 32:1-4- When the people saw that Moses was so long in coming down from the mountain, they gathered around Aaron and said, “Come, make us gods who will go before us. As for this fellow Moses who brought us up out of Egypt, we don’t know what has happened to him.” 2- Aaron answered them, “Take off the gold rings that your wives, your sons and your daughters, and bring them to me.” 3- So all the people took off their earrings and brought them to Aaron. 4- He took what they handed him and made it into an idol cast in the shape of a calf, fashioning it with a tool. Then they said, “These are your gods, O Israel, who brought you out of Egypt.”

Many Christians go their entire lives and never see anything that they can say for certain was the hand of the Lord. The Israelites saw God do one great, supernatural miracle after another.

Satan’s power to tempt us and lure us away from God is very powerful. (Genesis 3:1-7- Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals  the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, “You must not eat from any tree in the garden?” 2- The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, but God did say, ‘You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.’” 4- “You will not surely die,” the serpent said to the woman.  5- “For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God knowing good and evil.” 6- When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took and ate it. She also gave to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it. 7- Then both of their eyes were opened and they realized they were naked; so they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves.)

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Satan uses the same strategies today as with Adam and Eve to tempt God’s people into sin. Why? Because sin separates us from a relationship from our holy God. Sin grieves the Holy Spirit. We cannot sin and have a personal walk with a holy, righteous God. Satan knows that.

Satan will lure us by temptation. Once we act on his temptation, he will get us to stop praying because of guilt. Or perhaps make us too busy. Next we may stop reading our bible. Next we may become more sporadic with church attendance; thus drifting away from God. This will lead to more sin, which is what Satan wants.

That is only part of Satan’s strategies. Others include bringing a catastrophic storm into our lives that is so unfair and so crippling that it is all we can do simply to maintain basic life functions. This is so cruel that we are devastated.  We are probably crying uncontrollably; overwhelmed to the point of barely functioning in live.

Undoubtedly very angry with God for letting this happen to us and our family. We are much too overwhelmed to pray regularly, or read our bible.  To exhausted or distraught to attend church. We might be in the middle of a testing. For my insights on that subject read my article, The Full Armor Of God—Wear It! https://bestill876095733.wordpress.com/2018/03/14/the-full-armor-of-god-wear-it/

Are you going through a storm that has lured you away from God? Do you want to know where God is? Why has He forsaken you? And your family?

Deuteronomy 31:6- Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.

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God is always with you. He has not forsaken you. That is His promise.

Instead of giving Satan what he wants; letting him win, I know it is very difficult, believe God’s promise and draw close to him. Get in Satan’s face for what he is doing to you and your family. Pray to the Lord like never before, He will hear you. Read and study your bible. Learn about God. The Holy Spirit will speak to you through the scriptures; the scriptures are alive. Attend church regularly. God will deliver you and heal you. You have His promise. This is how you get into Satan’s face. And pray for God’s hedge of protection for you and your family. God’s angels will protect you from Satan.

This is how you establish and maintain a close, personal relationship with God. The creator and ruler of the universe. And, declare victory over Satan.

Micah 6:8 He has showed you, O man, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.

Follow the scriptures, and walk humbly with God—daily; defeat Satan every day.

Gary The Tested