THE DAY OF THE LORD
(Mal 3:1-4) Behold, I will send my messenger [John the Baptist], and he shall prepare the way before me: and the Lord, whom ye seek [the Messiah, Jesus Christ], shall suddenly come to his temple [“ye are the temple of God” 1 Cor 3:16], even the messenger of the covenant, whom ye delight in: behold, he shall come, saith the LORD of hosts. But who may abide the day of his [Second] coming? and who shall stand when he appeareth [in judgment]? for he is like a refiner's fire, and like fullers' soap: And he shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver [the metal symbolic of salvation]: and he shall purify [Heb: cleanse] the sons of Levi [the purpose of the Great Tribulation is to cleanse perfectly the Sons of God], and purge them as gold [shepherds] and silver [sheep], that they may offer unto the LORD an offering in righteousness. Then shall the offering of Judah [“gold” the rulers] and Jerusalem [“silver” the people] be pleasant unto the LORD, as in the days of old, and as in former years.
1. (Mat 11:9-11) But what went ye out for to see? A prophet? yea, I say unto you, and more than a prophet. For this is he, of whom it is written, Behold, I send my messenger before thy face, which shall prepare thy way before thee. Verily I say unto you, Among them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist: notwithstanding he that is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.
2. (Mat 3:11) I [John the Baptist] indeed baptize you with water [a physical substance] unto repentance [Gk: to think differently]: but he that cometh after me is mightier than I [Jesus Christ], whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you [Gk: to make whelmed (i.e. fully wet)] [i.e., full immersion] with the Holy Ghost [spiritual], and with fire [physical or spiritual, or both?]:
3. refiner = Heb: to fuse (metal), i.e. refine: cast, founder, goldsmith, melt, pure, purge away, try.
4. fuller = Heb: to trample; hence to wash (prop. by stamping with the feet).
5. Commentary: this will be the third and final cleansing of the Temple of you by Jesus Christ. The three cleansings are found in order of occurance: John 2:13-17; Mat 21:12-14; Mal 3:1-4.
THE SINS OF THE PEOPLE
(Mal 3:5-7) And I will come near to you to judgment; and I will be a swift witness [“shall suddenly come to his temple” v.1] against the sorcerers, and against the adulterers, and against false swearers, and against those that oppress the hireling in his wages, the widow, and the fatherless, and that turn aside the stranger from his right, and fear not me, saith the LORD of hosts. For I am the LORD, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed. Even from the days of your fathers ye are gone away from mine ordinances, and have not kept them. Return unto me, and I will return unto you, saith the LORD of hosts. But ye said, Wherein shall we return?
(Mal 3:8-12) Will a man rob God? Yet ye have robbed me. But ye say, Wherein have we robbed thee? In tithes [Heb: a tenth] [of income] and offerings. Ye are cursed with a curse: for ye have robbed me, even this whole nation. Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse [Heb: a depository], that there may be meat [Heb: food] in mine house, and prove [Heb: test] me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open [for] you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it. And I will rebuke the devourer for your sakes, and he shall not destroy the fruits of your ground; neither shall your vine cast her fruit before the time in the field, saith the LORD of hosts. And all nations shall call you blessed: for ye shall be a delightsome land, saith the LORD of hosts.
(Mal 3:13-15) Your words have been stout [Heb: hard, strong] against me, saith the LORD. Yet ye say, What have we spoken so much against thee? Ye have said, It is vain [Heb: useless] to serve God: and what profit is it that we have kept his ordinance, and that we have walked mournfully before the LORD of hosts? And now we call the proud happy; yea, they that work wickedness are set up; yea, they that tempt God are even delivered.
(Mal 3:16-18) Then they that feared the LORD spake often one to another: and the LORD hearkened, and heard it, and a book of remembrance was written before him for them that feared the LORD, and that thought upon his name. And they shall be mine, saith the LORD of hosts, in that day when I make up my jewels; and I will spare them, as a man spareth his own son that serveth him. Then shall ye return, and discern between the righteous and the wicked, between him that serveth God and him that serveth him not.
1. (1 Cor 6:3) Know ye not that we shall judge angels? how much more things that pertain to this life?
2. (Heb 5:13,14) For every one that useth milk is unskilful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe. But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.
THE COMING DAY OF THE LORD
(Mal 4:1-3) For, behold, the day cometh, that shall burn as an oven [ref: Mat 3:11]; and all the proud, yea, and all that do wickedly, shall be stubble: and the day that cometh shall burn them up, saith the LORD of hosts, that it shall leave them neither root nor branch. But unto you that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings; and ye shall go forth, and grow up as calves of the stall. And ye shall tread down the wicked; for they shall be ashes under the soles of your feet in the day that I shall do this, saith the LORD of hosts.
1. (Joel 2:1-11) Blow ye the trumpet in Zion [the Feast of Trumpets], and sound an alarm in my holy mountain: let all the inhabitants of the land tremble: for the day [the thousand year day: 2 Pet 3:8] of the LORD cometh [i.e., the Feast of Atonement], for it is nigh at hand; A day of darkness and of gloominess, a day of clouds and of thick darkness [for the unsaved], as the morning [Heb: dawn] spread upon the mountains [for the saved]: a great people and a strong [i.e., “first resurrection” (Rev 20:5) saints full of the Holy Spirit]; there hath not been ever the like, neither shall be any more after it, even to the years of many generations [the Feast of Tabernacles, the end of the Bible]. A fire devoureth before them; and behind them a flame burneth: the land is as the garden of Eden before them, and behind them a desolate wilderness; yea, and nothing shall escape them. The appearance of them is as the appearance of horses; and as horsemen, so shall they run. Like the noise of chariots on the tops of mountains shall they leap, like the noise of a flame of fire that devoureth the stubble [Mal 4:1], as a strong people set in battle array. Before their face the people shall be much pained: all faces shall gather blackness. They shall run like mighty men; they shall climb the wall like men of war; and they shall march every one on his ways, and they shall not break their ranks [as differing church denominations do, for they shall all have the “one” mind of Christ]: Neither shall one thrust another; they shall walk every one in his path [manifesting obedience]: and when they fall upon the sword, they shall not be wounded [they are immortal]. They shall run to and fro in the city; they shall run upon the wall, they shall climb up upon the houses; they shall enter in at the windows like a thief. The earth shall quake before them; the heavens shall tremble: the sun and the moon shall be dark, and the stars shall withdraw their shining [“the sixth seal” (the Day of Atonement): Rev 6:12-17]: And the LORD shall utter his voice before his army: for his camp is very great: for he is strong that executeth his word: for the day of the LORD is great and very terrible; and who can abide it?
a. (1 John 3:2) Beloved, now are we the sons [Gk: teknon; children] of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he [Christ Jesus] shall appear [at His Second Coming, The Day of the Lord], we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.
SUMMATION: THE ETERNAL LAW OF GOD, AND THE ETERNAL LOVE OF GOD
(Mal 4:4-6) Remember [Old Testament] ye the law of Moses my servant, which I commanded unto him in Horeb [Mount Sinai] for all Israel, with the statutes and judgments. Behold [New Testament], I will send you Elijah the prophet [John the Baptist] before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD: And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children [love], and the heart of the children to their fathers [love, i.e., many salvations], lest I come and smite the earth with a curse.