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Wednesday, 10 April 2019

Malachi 3 : 1-12

‘“For I am the LORD, I do not change; Therefore you are not consumed, O sons of Jacob. ……….Return to Me, and I will return to you,” Says the LORD of hosts.’ – Malachi 3:6&7

The picture of God’s people in Malachi, whom He had brought back from exile into Judah is a disappointed, disillusioned lot, to who the prophet was desperately trying to bring God’s Word. Their religion had turned into rituals, losing its essence and it reflected in their moral and social life as well. The Prophet tries his best to come against their callous attitude using the question and answer method. The evil condition of the people is clearly expressed in their eight questions throughout the book, which Malachi puts down to which he gives God's answer. Yet the glimmer of God’s mercy shines through several verses, one of which is our key verse today.


As God’s people today, we too can become indifferent which will reflect in our worship and our lifestyle if we are aren’t careful to pay attention and address it. It can emerge from disappointments in life, thinking God doesn’t care so we can live the way we want. When we turn our back on God, He turns away but if we return, He returns to us! God is faithful even when we become unfaithful—it is His mercy that lets us not be destroyed and who gives us a second chance to get back to Him.


From the text we can see two principles applicable to every child of God- whether in staying the course of Christian life or in returning when we have gone wayward.


A Refining

Malachi 3:2 says “For He is like a refiner’s fire…”  The Lord is like a refiner of silver who allows the dross in the metal to melt off so that his reflection is seen on it! Romans 8:29 says, “For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son…..” That is the ultimate purpose for every believer- to be conformed to the image of Christ. God allows the heat of trials and difficult circumstances to come our way so that Christ’s character can be formed in us while the dross of our sinful nature can melt away. We can be assured that He never takes His eyes off us, just as the silversmith until He brings us forth victoriously. But a refining is necessary from time to time to make us more like Him.


A Re-defining

As the Lord pointed out their shortcoming to them- their sin, injustice, oppression of the weak, the cheating in tithes and offerings, He admonishes them to repent, to redefine their lives by rectifying those areas.  Vs.10 says, “Bring all the tithes into the storehouse, That there may be food in My house, And try Me now in this,” Says the LORD of hosts, “If I will not open for you the windows of heaven And pour out for you such blessing That there will not be room enough to receive it.” As the Lord brings to us conviction of our sins and shortfalls, He is giving us a chance to repent, return and make the necessary changes in rectifying our lives according to His principles. He is ever willing to bless us so that we can live in the delightful land of our promise. 


In the light of our reading today, can we examine our lives to see where we are at? Have we taken the grace of God lightly? Are we bitter towards Him because things have not worked out the way we thought? It’s time to repent of our callous attitude and turn to the Lord so He will have mercy on us— His faithfulness ever remains, and He will take us forward if we trust Him with our lives! Are you ready for a redefined life in Christ Jesus?


Think on:

“Through the LORD’s mercies we are not consumed,

Because His compassions fail not. They are new every morning; Great is Your faithfulness.”

-Lamentations 3:22-23

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