Nothing is known of Malachi’s background. From his writings it can be determined he prophesied around 430 B.C., the last
prophet of the Old Testament.
God’s love for Israel
God expresses His love for Israel, offering a comparison with their brother-nation, the Edomites, as a demonstration of that
love. His love is not being returned with the love and respect due to their Father, with sacrifices and offerings being more
like leftovers than first-fruits. It would be better if the temple doors were closed.
Charges against the priests; Marriage and divorce
The priests are admonished for failing to teach the law, and even deceiving the people concerning it. The people’s attitude
to marriage is condemned with God expressing His hatred for divorce, which is seen as dealing treacherously with a man’s
first wife, and an obstacle to maintaining the Godly seed of Israel when a foreign wife is taken.
The Day of Judgement
This chapter opens with the prophecy of John the Baptist and the Messiah, who will first come to purify, then to judge.
There follows an exhortation to return to tithing as required by the law. The people have robbed God by withholding tithes
and offerings, and have suffered as a result. They are invited to test God by paying their tithes in full; then they will
receive abundant blessings.
A growing concern that the arrogant are blessed and evil-doers prosper has led to the attitude that there is no advantage
in serving God. The people are exhorted to return to faithful worship with a promise of recognition on the day of judgement
for those who do.
The Day of the Lord
The day is coming when unrepentant sinners will be convicted and the righteous receive their due reward. Elijah will be
sent before that great and dreadful day, to be a sign and encouragement for all to repent of their sins and turn to the Lord.