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Tuesday, October 16, 2018

CHRIST Is The SUN of RIGHTEOUSNESS To Heal Us





Malachi 4:1-6 NIV








Judgment and Covenant Renewal








1 Surely the day is coming; it will burn like a furnace. All the arrogant and every evildoer will be stubble, and the day that is coming will set them on fire,” 



says The LORD ALMIGHTY. 



“Not a root or a branch will be left to them. 



2 But for you who revere MY Name, The 

SUN of RIGHTEOUSNESS Will Rise with 


healing in its rays. 







And you will go out and frolic like well-fed calves.






3Then you will trample on the wicked; they will be 

ashes under the soles of your feet on the day when I 


act,” 




Says The LORD ALMIGHTY.




4“Remember the Law of MY servant Moses, The 

Decrees and Laws I Gave him at Horeb for all Israel.



5 “See, I Will Send the prophet Elijah to you before that 

Great and Dreadful Day of The LORD Comes. 









 6 He will turn the hearts of the parents to their 

children, and the hearts of the children to their 

parents; or else I Will Come and Strike the land with 

total destruction.”















Malachi 4







4:1-3 Here is a reference to the First and to the Second Coming of CHRIST: GOD Has Fixed The Day of both. Those who do wickedly, who do not fear GOD'S Anger, shall feel it. It is certainly to be applied to the Day of Judgment, when CHRIST Shall Be Revealed in flaming fire; to execute judgment on the proud, and all that do wickedly.


In both, CHRIST Is a rejoicing Light to those who serve HIM faithfully. By The SUN of RIGHTEOUSNESS we understand JESUS CHRIST. Through HIM believers are justified and sanctified, and so are brought to see light. HIS Influences render the sinner holy, joyful, and fruitful. It is applicable to the Graces and Comforts of The HOLY SPIRIT, Brought into the souls of men. CHRIST Gave The SPIRIT to those who are HIS, to shine in their hearts, and to be a COMFORTER to them, a SUN and a SHIELD.


That day which to the wicked will burn as an oven, will to the righteous be bright as the morning; it is what they wait for, more than those that wait for the morning. CHRIST Came as the Sun, to bring, not only light to a dark world, but health to a distempered world. Souls shall increase in knowledge and spiritual strength. Their growth is as that of calves of the stall, not as the flower of the field, which is slender and weak, and soon withers.


The saints' triumphs are all owing to GOD'S victories; it is not they that do this, but GOD WHO Does it for them. Behold another day is coming, far more dreadful to all that work wickedness than any which is gone before. How great then the happiness of the believer, when he goes from the darkness and misery of this world, to rejoice in The LORD for evermore!


4:4-6 Here is a solemn conclusion, not only of this prophecy, but of the Old Testament. Conscience makes us remember the Law. Though we have not prophets, yet, as long as we have Bibles, we may keep up our communion with GOD. Let others boast in their proud reasoning, and call it enlightening, but let us keep near to that Sacred WORD, through which This SUN of RIGHTEOUSNESS shines upon the souls of HIS people.


John the Baptist preached repentance and reformation, as Elijah had done. The turning of souls to GOD and their duty is the best preparation of them for the Great and Dreadful Day of The LORD. John shall preach a doctrine that shall reach men's hearts, and work a change in them. Thus he shall prepare the way for The KINGDOM of Heaven.


The Jewish nation, by wickedness, laid themselves open to the curse. GOD Was Ready to Bring ruin upon them; but HE Will once more Try whether they will repent and return; therefore HE Sent John the Baptist to preach repentance to them. Let the believer wait with patience and cheerfully expect the Great Day when CHRIST Shall Come the second time to complete our salvation. But those must expect to be smitten with a sword, with a curse who do not turn to HIM WHO Smites them with a rod.


None can expect to escape the curse of GOD'S broken law nor to enjoy the happiness of HIS chosen and redeemed people, unless their hearts are turned from sin and the world, to CHRIST and Holiness.





Amen.







The Coming Of JESUS And HIS Messenger John The Baptist Foretold






Malachi 3:1-18 NIV







1 “I Will Send MY messenger, who will 

prepare the way Before ME. 









Then suddenly The LORD you are seeking 

Will Come To HIS Temple; 









The MESSENGER of The Covenant, 

WHOM you desire, Will Come,” 










Says The LORD ALMIGHTY.



2But who can endure The Day of HIS Coming? Who can stand when HE Appears? For HE Will Be Like a refiner’s fire or a launderer’s soap. 3HE Will Sit as a refiner and purifier of silver; HE Will Purify the Levites and Refine them like gold and silver. Then The LORD Will Have men who will bring offerings in righteousness, 4and the offerings of Judah and Jerusalem will be acceptable to The LORD, as in days gone by, as in former years.


5“So I Will Come To Put you on trial. I Will Be Quick To Testify against sorcerers, adulterers and perjurers, against those who defraud laborers of their wages, who oppress the widows and the fatherless, and deprive the foreigners among you of justice, but do not fear ME,” 


Says The LORD Almighty.







Breaking Covenant by Withholding Tithes





6I The LORD Do Not Change. So you, the descendants of Jacob, are not destroyed. 


7Ever since the time of your ancestors 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 mere mortal rob GOD? Yet you rob ME.


“But you ask, ‘How are we robbing YOU?’


“In tithes and offerings. 9You are under a curse—your whole nation—because you are robbing ME.


 10Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in MY House. Test ME in this,” Says The LORD ALMIGHTY, “and see if I Will Not Throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it. 


 11I Will Prevent pests from devouring your crops, and the vines in your fields will not drop their fruit before it is ripe,” 


Says The LORD ALMIGHTY. 



12“Then all the nations will call you blessed, for yours will be a delightful land,” 



Says The LORD ALMIGHTY.








Israel Speaks Arrogantly Against GOD






13“You have spoken arrogantly 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 do we gain by carrying out HIS Requirements and going about like mourners before The LORD ALMIGHTY? 15But now we call the arrogant blessed. Certainly evildoers prosper, and even when they put God to the test, they get away with it.’ ”







The Faithful Remnant







16Then those who feared The LORD talked with each other, and The LORD Listened and Heard. A scroll of remembrance was written in HIS Presence concerning those who feared The LORD and honored HIS Name.


17“On the day when I Act,” 


Says The LORD ALMIGHTY



“they will be MY treasured possession. I Will Spare them, just as a father has compassion and spares his son who serves him. 



18And you will again see the distinction between the righteous and the wicked, between those who serve GOD and those who do not.











Malachi 3






3:1-6 The first words of this chapter are an answer to the scoffers of those days. Here is a prophecy of the appearing of John the Baptist. He is CHRIST'S messenger. He shall prepare the way before HIM, by calling men to repentance.


The MESSIAH Had Been long Called, HE WHO Should Come, and now shortly HE Will Come. The LORD JESUS Prepares the sinner's heart to be HIS Temple by the ministry of HIS WORD and the Convictions of HIS SPIRIT, and HE enters it as the Messenger of peace and consolation.


CHRIST Came to Distinguish men, to Separate between the precious and the vile. HE shall sit as a Refiner. CHRIST, by HIS Gospel, shall purify and reform HIS church, and by HIS SPIRIT Working with it, shall Regenerate and Cleanse souls. HE Will Take Away the dross found in them. HE will Separate their corruptions, which make their faculties worthless and useless.


The believer do not need fear the fiery trial of afflictions and temptations, by which The SAVIOR Refines HIS Gold. CHRIST Will by interceding for them make them accepted. Where no fear of GOD is no good is to be expected. Evil pursues sinners. GOD Is Unchangeable. And though the sentence against evil works is not executed speedily, yet it will be executed; The LORD Is as much an enemy to sin as ever. We may all apply this to ourselves. Because we have to do with The GOD WHO Does Not Change, therefore it is that we are not consumed; because HIS compassion does not fail.


3:7-12 The men of that generation turned away from GOD, they had not kept HIS Commandments. GOD Gives them a gracious call. But they said, Wherein shall we return? GOD Notices what returns our hearts make to the calls of HIS WORD. Here is an earnest exhortation to reform. GOD Must Be Served in the first place; and the interest of our souls ought to be preferred before that of our bodies. Let us trust GOD to provide for our comfort. GOD Has blessings ready for us, but through the weakness of our faith and the narrowness of our desires, we do not have room to receive them.









Warning to the Priests





Malachi 2:1-17 NIV







Additional Warning to the Priests







1“And now, you priests, this warning is for you. 

2If you do not listen, and if you do not resolve to honor MY Name,” 



Says The LORD ALMIGHTY



“I Will Send a curse on you, and I Will Curse your blessings. Yes, I Have Already Cursed them, because you have not resolved to honor ME.


3“Because of you I Will Rebuke your descendantsa ; I Will Smear on your faces the dung from your festival sacrifices, and you will be carried off with it. 4And you will know that I Have Sent you this warning so that MY Covenant with Levi may continue,” 


Says The LORD ALMIGHTY. 



5“MY Covenant was with him, a Covenant of life and peace, and I Gave them to him; this called for reverence and he revered ME and stood in awe of MY Name. 6True instruction was in his mouth and nothing false was found on his lips. He walked with ME in peace and uprightness, and turned many from sin.


7For the lips of a priest ought to preserve knowledge, because he is the messenger of The LORD ALMIGHTY and people seek instruction from his mouth. 






 8But 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.”






Breaking Covenant Through Divorce





10Do we not all have One FATHER? Did Not ONE GOD Create us? Why do we profane the covenant of our ancestors by being unfaithful to one another?






11Judah has been unfaithful. A detestable thing has been committed in Israel and in Jerusalem: Judah has desecrated the Sanctuary The LORD Loves by marrying women who worship a foreign god. 12As for the man who does this, whoever he may be, may The LORD Remove him from the tents of Jacobc —even though he brings an offering to The LORD ALMIGHTY.


13Another thing you do: You flood The LORD'S Altar with tears. You weep and wail Because HE No Longer Looks with Favor on your offerings or Accepts them with Pleasure from your hands. 14You ask, “Why?” It is because The LORD Is The Witness between you and the wife of your youth. You have been unfaithful to her, though she is your partner, the wife of your marriage covenant.


15Has Not The ONE GOD Made You? You belong to HIM in body and spirit. And What Does The ONE GOD Seek? Godly offspring.d So be on your guard, and do not be unfaithful to the wife of your youth.


16“The man who hates and divorces his wife,” 


Says The LORD, The GOD of Israel,



“does violence to the one he should 


protect,”



Says The LORD ALMIGHTY.



So be on your guard, and do not be unfaithful.






Breaking Covenant Through Injustice







17You have wearied The LORD with your words.


“How have we wearied HIM?” you ask.


By saying, “All who do evil are good in The Eyes of 

The LORD, and HE Is Pleased With them” or “Where Is 


The GOD of Justice?”









Malachi 2






2:1-9 What is here said of the Covenant of priesthood, is true of the Covenant of Grace made with all believers, as spiritual priests. It is a Covenant of life and peace; it assures all believers of all happiness, both in this world and in that to come.


It is an honor to GOD'S servants to be employed as HIS messengers. The priest's lips should not keep knowledge from HIS people, but keep it for them. The people are all concerned to know the Will of The LORD. We must not only consult the Written WORD, but also desire instruction and advice from GOD'S messengers, in the affairs of our souls.


Ministers must exert themselves to the utmost for the conversion of sinners; and even among those called Israelites, there are many to be turned from iniquity. Those ministers are likely to turn men from sin who preach sound doctrine, and live holy lives according to the Scripture. Many departed from this way; thus they misled the people. Such as walk with GOD in peace and righteousness, and turn others from sin honor GOD; HE Will Honor them.


2:10-17 Corrupt practices are the fruit of corrupt principles; and he who is false to his GOD, will not be true to his fellow men. In contempt of the marriage covenant, which GOD Instituted, the Jews put away the wives they had of their own nation, probably to make room for gentile wives. They made their lives bitter to them. 


Consider she is your own wife the nearest relation you have in the world. The wife is to be looked on, not as a servant, but as a companion to the husband. There is an oath of GOD between them, which is not to be broken. Husband and wife should continue to their lives' end, in holy love and peace. Did Not GOD Make one, one Eve for one Adam?


Why Did HE Make but one woman for one man? It was that the children might be made a seed to serve HIM. Husbands and wives must live in the fear of GOD, that their seed may be a godly seed. The GOD of Israel Says that HE Hates putting away. Those who would be kept from sin, must take heed to their spirits, for there all sin begins. Men will find that their wrong conduct in their families springs from selfishness, which disregards the welfare and happiness of others, when opposed to their own passions and fancies.


It is wearisome to GOD To Hear people justify themselves in wicked practices. Those who think GOD Can Be a friend to sin, affront HIM, and deceive themselves. The scoffers said, “Where is The GOD of Judgment?”  But The Day of The LORD Will Come upon them.