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And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. John 8:32

The Written Prophecy of Malachi

By H. A. (Buster) Dobbs
I.  Introduction.
    A.  The man.
        1.  The name "Malachi" means "my messenger."
        2.  The name is found only here in scripture.
        3.  Nothing more is known of this prophet than what we glean 
            from the book.
        4.  Malachi was the last of the Old Testament prophets and is 
            called by Jewish authorities "the seal and end of the 
            prophets." (This, of course, excludes John the baptizer and 
            Jesus.)
    B.  The background.
        1.  The book was written about 400 years before the appearance of 
            Jesus.
        2.  Nehemiah was permitted to lead a band of returning Jews to 
            Jerusalem and restore the nation to its homeland and rebuild 
            the temple and the capital city.
            a.  According to the practice of the time, he was called back 
                to Susa, the Persian capital, to report to King Artaxerxes.
            b.  He was gone from Jerusalem for two or three years.
            c.  After the return of Nehemiah from his trip to Susa, we 
                have sketchy information about events among the Jews. 
        3.  Upon his return, Nehemiah found evil behavior and a lack of  
            interest in the law.
        4.  He undertook a new reformation and Malachi came forward 
            to help.
II.  The book.
     A.  Jehovah's love of Judah (1:1-5).
         1.  The word delivered to sinful Israel was not that of the 
             prophet, but of God (1:1). 
             a.  Jehovah preferred Jacob over Esau (1:1-3).
             b.  Edom (Esau) would not be allowed to rebuild (1:4).
         2.  Jacob would see this and, being allowed to rebuild, would 
             know once again that Jacob was preferred of Esau (1:5).
     B.  Israel was showed no gratitude and was rebellious (1:6-14).
         1.  God was not feared and honored; the priests despised his 
             name (1:6).
         2.  Ways in which the priests showed loathing for God (1:7-11).
             a.  By offering polluted bread (animal flesh) they showed 
                 contempt for God (1:7).
             b.  The polluted flesh was the blind, lame and sick offered for 
                 sacrifice (1:8).
             c.  What they were bold to offer to God they would be 
                 ashamed to offer to their governor (1:8).
             d.  An ironic appeal to try to gain the favor of God with such 
                 polluted sacrifices (1:9).
             e.  No one opposed their disrespectful behavior (1:10).
             f.  Under Messiah, the Jews would be rejected and Jehovah 
                 would be worshipped by Gentiles (1:11).
         3.  Further complaint about corrupt worship and bad attitudes 
             (1:12-14).
             a.  By offering blemished sacrifices they held worship in 
                 contempt (1:12).
             b.  Worship was weariness to these rebellious people (1:13).
             c.  Their worship was deceitful and they showed less respect 
                 for God than did the Gentiles (1:14).
     C.  Priests and people are condemned for breaking covenant and 
         for idolatry, adultery and infidelity (2:1-17).
         1.  For neglect of their responsibilities, the priests are in 
             danger of punishment (2:1-4).
         2.  What a true priest ought to be (2:5-9).
             a.  Fears God (2:5).
             b.  Teaches God's law in truth (2:6-7).
             c.  False teachers pervert the law of God (2:8).
             d.  God refuses the false and accepts the true priest (2:9).
         3.  Foreign marriages and divorces condemned (2:10-16).
             a.  Reminds them of their covenant with God (2:10).
             b.  The men of Israel, contrary to their law,  married 
                 foreigners (2:11).
             c.  Jehovah is angry over this violation of his law (2:12).
             d.  The men of Israel not only married foreign wives, but put 
                 away their Jewish wives and caused the abused women to 
                 cover the altar of Jehovah with tears (2:13).
             e.  The men answered, What are you talking about 
                 [wherefore]? (2:14).
             f.  The prophet answers: because you have sinned against the 
                 wife of your youth by putting her away to marry 
                 foreigners (2:14).
             g.  The importance of maintaining family values (2:15).
             h.  God hates divorce (2:16).
         4.  Judgment and condemnation is sure to come (2:17).
     D.  A better day will come (3:1-18).
         1.  The coming of Messiah (3:1-6).
             a.  God's messenger will come suddenly to prepare the way 
                 for Messiah (3:1).
             b.  Messiah will rebuke and condemn (3:2-3).
             c.  The worship will be true and happy (3:4).
             d.  Jehovah will judge and punish the wicked (3:5).
             e.  The great principles of right and wrong never change; 
                 God's desire is for Judah to change (3:6).
         2.  God is faithful to his promises (3:7-12).
             a.  Jehovah will receive the penitent (3:7).
             b.  The people robbed God (3:8-10).
             c.  God would punish the robbers (3:11-12).
         3.  The rebellious people spoke against God and his law 
             (3:13-15).
         4.  The few faithful who did not speak against God would be 
             honored (3:16-18).
     E.  Separation of good and evil at a day of judgment (4:1-3).
         1.  The proud and the rebellious to be burned up (4:1-2).
         2.  The true and faithful to be exonerated and happy (4:3).
     F.  Obey the law and avoid the curse (4:5-6).
         1.  The time honored law (4:4).
         2.  Elijah to come and Judah to be rejected  (4:5-6).

H. A. "Buster" Dobbs, email: [email protected]
P. O. Box 690192
Houston, Texas 77269-0192
(281) 469-3540

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