“For behold, the day is coming, burning like an oven, when all the arrogant and all evildoers will be stubble. The day that is coming shall set them ablaze, says the LORD of hosts, so that it will leave them neither root nor branch. But for you who fear my name, the sun of righteousness shall rise with healing in its wings. You shall go out leaping like calves from the stall. And you shall tread down the wicked, for they will be ashes under the soles of your feet, on the day when I act, says the LORD of hosts.
“Remember the law of my servant Moses, the statutes and rules that I commanded him at Horeb for all Israel.
“Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the great and awesome day of the LORD comes. And he will turn the hearts of fathers to their children and the hearts of children to their fathers, lest I come and strike the land with a decree of utter destruction.”
Comment: This, the final portion of the Book of Malachi, starts talking about ‘the day is coming’, and at the end describes it as ‘the great and awesome day of the LORD’. It starts with what is a terrifying description of what is to happen to those who are against God. It, as an Australian’, sounds like being hopelessly caught in a raging, uncontrollable bush fire. It is followed by the end of those who fear God. (In the healthy sense of the word fear, something like stand in awe of Him). Words like ‘sun shall rise’, ‘healing’, with ‘the vitality of a young animal’ are used to express the positivity that that day will bring to those who ‘fear’ God. They are to continue in the meantime remembering the law as given by Moses.
Then a promised prophet, here called Elijah, before ‘the day’ comes. ‘The Day’ is the coming of the Messiah to bring in what is an era rather than a day – an era of Grace; an era of opportunity but which will end with a time of Judgement.
It is always possible to read things wrong or incompletely if they are taken out of context. The context for the book of Malachi is the whole Bible. So we have touched on many things which make much more sense if we know our Bibles well. I started writing and continue writing these devotionals for a number of reasons. A major one was to encourage people to be people of The Book, the Bible.
Prayer: If I need to change, give me courage and true faith; if I am on Your side now, help me to be strong for You, O Lord.