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The Book of the Prophet MalachiMy messenger
The 1st Chapter
The heavy burden, which the Lord showed against Israel by Malachi. I have loved you, says the Lord: And yet you say: wherein have you loved us? Was not Esau Jacobs brother, says the Lord? yet have I loved Jacob, and hated Esau: yes I have made his hills waste, and his heritage a wilderness for dragons. And though Edom said: well, we are destroyed, we will go build up again the places that be layed waste: yet (says the Lord of hosts) what they builded, that brake I down: so that it is called a cursed land, and people, whom the Lord has ever been angry withal.
Your eyes have seen it, and you your selves must confess, that the Lord has brought the land of Israel to great honor. Should not a son honor his father, and a servant his master? If I be now a father, where is mine honor? If I be the Lord, where am I feared? says the Lord of hosts.
Now to you priests, that despise my name. And if you say: wherein have we despised your name? In this, that you * offer unclean bread upon my altar. And if you will say: wherein have we offered any unclean thing unto the? In this that you say: the altar of the Lord is not to be regarded. If you offer the blind, is that not evil? And if you offer the lame and sick, is that not evil? Yes offer it unto your prince, shall he be content with you, or except your person, says the Lord of hosts? * to offer defiled bread is to do anything by hypocrisy and not to the glory of God, as has been commanded in his word, but according to the inventions and dreams of men. Oseas 9 MN
And now make your prayer before God, that he may have mercy upon us: for such things have you done. Shall he regard your persons, think ye, says the Lord of hosts? Yes what is he among you, that will do so much as shut the doors, or to kindle fire upon mine alter for nought? I have no pleasure in you, says the Lord of hosts: and as for the meatoffering, I will not accept it at your hand. For the rising up of the son unto the going down of the same, my name is great among the Gentiles: yes in every place shall there be sacrifice be done, and a clean meatoffering offered up to my name: for my name is great among the Heathen, says the Lord of hosts. But you have unhallowed it, in that you say, the alter of the Lord is not regarded, and * the thing that is set thereupon , not worthy to be eaten. * Or his word and his meat are despised.
Now say ye: It is but labor and travail, and thus have you thought scorn at it (says the Lord of hosts) offering robbery, yes the lame and sick. you have brought me in a meatoffering, should I accept it of your hand says the Lord? Cursed be the dissembler, which has in his flock one that is male, and when he makes a vow, offers a spotted one unto the Lord. For I am a great king (says the lord of hosts) and my name is fearful among the Heathen.
The 2nd Chapter
And now (O you priests) this commandment touches you: If you will not hear it, to give glory unto my name, says the Lord of hosts, I will send a curse upon you, and will curse your blessings: yea, curse them will I if you do not take heed. Behold, I shall corrupt your seed, and cast dung in your faces: even the dung of your solemn feasts and it shall cleave fast upon you. And you shall know that I have sent this commandment unto you: that my covenant which I made with Levi, might stand, says the Lord of hosts.
I made a covenant of life and peace with him: this I gave him, that he might stand in awe of me: and so he did fear me, and had my name in reverence. The law of truth was in his mouth, and there was no wickedness found in his lips. He walked with me in peace and equity, and did turn many one away from their sins. For the priests lips should be sure knowledge, that the men may seek the law at his mouth, for he is a messenger of the Lord of hosts. But as for you, you are gone clean out of the way, and have caused the multitude to be offended at the law: you have broken the covenant of Levi, says the Lord of hosts. Therefore will I also make you despised, and to be of no reputation among all the people: because you have not kept my ways, but have been partial in the law.
Have we not all one father? Has not one God made us? why does every one of us then despise his own brother, and so break the covenant of our fathers? Now has Judah offended: yes the abomination is done in Israel and in Jerusalem, for Judah has defiled the Sanctuary of the Lord, which he loved, and has kept the daughter of a strange God. But the Lord shall destroy the man that does this, yes both the master and the scholar, out of the tabernacle of Jacob, with him that offers up meatoffering unto the Lord of hosts. Now have you brought it to this point again, that the altar of the Lord is covered with tears weeping, and mourning: so that I will nomore regard the meatoffering, neither will I receive or accept anything at your hands. And yet you say: wherefore? Even because that where as the Lord made a covenant between the and your wife of your youth, you have despised her: Yet is she your own companion and married wife.
So did not the one, and yet had he an excellent spirit. What did then the one? He sought the seed promised of God. Therefore look well to your spirit, and let no man despise the wife of his youth. If you hate her put her away, says the Lord God of Israel and give her clothing for her scorn, says the Lord of hosts. Look well then to your spirit, and despise her not. you grieve the Lord with your words, and yet you say: wherewith all have we grieved him? In this, that you say: All that do evil are good in the sight of God, and such please him. Or else where is the God that punishes?
The 3rd Chapter
Behold, I will send my messenger, which shall prepare the way before me: and the Lord whom you would have, shall soon come to his temple, yes even the messenger of the covenant whom you long for.
Behold, he comes, says the Lord of hosts. But who may abide the day of his coming? Who shall be able to endure, when he appears? For he is like a goldsmiths fire, and like washers soap. He shall sit him down to try and to cleanse the silver, he shall purge the children of Levi, and purify them as gold and silver: that they may bring meatofferings unto the Lord in righteousness. Then shall the offering of Judah and Jerusalem be acceptable unto the Lord, like as from the beginning and the years, before time. I will come and punish you, and I myself will be a swift witness against the witches, against the *advouterers, against false swearers: yes and against those, that wrongfully keep back the hirelings duty: which vex the widows and the fatherless, and oppress the stranger, and fear me not, says the Lord of hosts. For I am the Lord that change not, and you (O children of Jacob) will not leave off : you are gone away from mine ordinances, and since the time of your forefathers have not kept them. *advoutry: prefix "a" meaning not or without, devout: devotion; plain hearted to God, being devoted to something or some one else. see James 2 for adultery
Turn you now unto me, and I will turn me unto you, says the Lord of hosts: you say: wherein shall we turn? Should a man use falsehood and deceit with God as you use falsehood and deceit with me. Yet you say wherein use we deceit with you? In Tithes and heave offerings. Therefore are you cursed with *penury, because you dissemble with me, all the *forte of you. *penury= extreme want *forte = loud and forceful excelling of ones self
Bring every Tithe in to my barn, that there may be meat in my house: and prove me with all (says the Lord of hosts) if I will not open the windows of heaven unto you, and pour you out a blessing with plenteousness. Yes, I shall reprove the consumer for your sakes, so that he shall not eat up the fruit of your ground, neither shall the vineyard be barren in the field, says the Lord of hosts: In so much that all people shall say, that you be blessed, for you shall be a plenteous land, says the Lord of hosts.
You speak hard words against me, says the Lord. And yet you say: What have we spoken against you? you have said.
It is lost labor, to serve God? What profit have we for keeping his commandments, and for walking humbly before the Lord of hosts? Therefore may we say, that the proud are happy, and that they which deal with ungodliness, are set up: for they temp God and yet escape.
But they that fear God, say thus one to another: the Lord considers and hears it. Yes it is before him a memorial book, written for such as fear the Lord, and remember his name. And in the day that I will make (says the Lord of hosts) they shall be mine own possession: and I will favor them, like as a man favors his own son, that does him service. Turn you therefore, and consider what difference is between the righteous and the ungodly: between him that serves God, and him that serves him not.
For mark, the day comes that shall burn as an oven: and all the proud, yes and all such as do wickedness, shall be straw: and the day that is for to come, shall burn them up (says the Lord of hosts) so that it shall leave them neither root nor branch.
But unto you that fear my name, shall the Son of righteousness arise, and health shall be under his wings: you shall go forth, and multiply as the fat calves. you shall tread down the ungodly: for they shall be like the ashes under the soles of your feet, in the day that I shall make, says the Lord of hosts.
Remember the law of Moses my servant, which I commanded unto him in Oreb for all Israel, with the statutes and ordinances. Behold, I will send you *Elias (Greek of Elijah) the prophet: before the coming of the day of the great and fearful Lord. He shall turn the hearts of the fathers to their children, and the hearts of the children to their fathers, that I come not and smite the earth with cursing.
The end of the prophecy of Malachy
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