“Elijah Appearing in the Kirtland Temple” (fragment), by Dan Lewis
The name Malachi (מַלְאָכִי) means “my messenger.” Here are some of the messages Malachi delivered to the post-exilic inhabitants of Jerusalem:
- God loves you (Malachi 1:1-5).
- You have despised and profaned His name by offering corrupt sacrifices to Him (Malachi 1:6-14).
- The priests will be cursed unless they repent. They should be more like their ancestor, Levi. They are supposed to be God’s messengers to the people (Malachi 2:1-10).
- When you marry, you become one. God expects you to be faithful to your spouse (Malachi 2:11-16).
- You weary the Lord when you rationalize your sins (Malachi 2:17).
- A messenger will prepare the way for the coming of the Lord, who will refine and purify us, so that we can offer righteous sacrifices to Him (Malachi 3:1-6, 3 Nephi 24:1-6).
- You have robbed God by failing to pay tithing. He will bless you abundantly as you obey this commandment (Malachi 3:7-12, 3 Nephi 24:7-12).
- Life may not seem fair, but in the end, you will see that God is just (Malachi 3:13-18, 3 Nephi 24:13-18).
- Difficult days are coming, and the proud and wicked will be consumed, but those who love the Lord will be protected and healed (Malachi 4:1-3, 3 Nephi 25:1-3).
- Keep the law of Moses (Malachi 4:4, 3 Nephi 25:4).
- Elijah will come before those difficult days to heal intergenerational rifts (Malachi 4:5-6, 3 Nephi 25:5-6).
Notice how many messengers are highlighted in this short book: Malachi himself, the priests (who should be God’s messengers like their ancestor, Levi), an unnamed messenger who will prepare the world for the coming of the Lord, Moses (who gave the law), and Elijah.
Malachi is a prepared messenger. He expects that many of his messages will not be well received. Notice how many times he uses the phrases “yet ye say,” “but ye say,” or “yet ye said.” But every time, he has a response to these anticipated objections.
Malachi lived long after Lehi and his family left Jerusalem, but when the Savior visited the American continent, He quoted chapters three and four and commanded His disciples to write them down. (See 3 Nephi 24:1.) Here are some blog posts about key concepts in those two chapters:
The Savior’s Second Coming
- How Is Christ the “Messenger of the Covenant?”
- How Is Christ Like a “Refiner’s Fire” and “Fuller’s Soap?”
- What Offering Will the Sons of Levi Make in Righteousness?
- Why Does God Command Us to Pay Tithing?
- There Shall Not Be Room Enough – 3 Nephi 24:10-12
- The Storehouse
Trusting God’s fairness
- What Doth It Profit That We Have Kept His Ordinances? – 3 Nephi 24:13-18
- What Is the “Book of Remembrance” Mentioned by Malachi?
- “When I Make up My Jewels” – 3 Nephi 24:17
Receiving God’s grace in difficult times
Elijah and family relationships
- How Did Elijah Turn the Hearts of Fathers and Children Toward Each Other?
- The Spirit of Elijah
- Why Is Family History Important?
Blog Posts: December 13-18
He Shall Purify
Malachi’s people were guilty of negligence and carelessness in their religious observances. After calling the people to repentance, the prophet had some specific words of correction for the priests: “I have sent you this warning so that my covenant with Levi may continue,” says the Lord Almighty.“ My covenant was with him, a covenant of life and…
One Father, One God
The prophet Malachi asks a rhetorical question: “Have we not all one father? hath not one God created us?” Most people would agree that we are all children of God. But Malachi’s follow-up question is much more challenging: “Why do we deal treacherously every man against his brother?” (Malachi 2:10). In the next chapter, Malachi declares that when…
“Ye Sons of Jacob”
Elder Dale G. Renlund taught, “When God directs us to do one thing, He often has many purposes in mind. Family history and temple work is not only for the dead but blesses the living as well” (“Family History and Temple Work: Sealing and Healing,” General Conference, April 2018). The prophet Malachi understood this principle.…
“Did He Not Make One?”
There are few things that prophets condemn more forcefully than unfaithfulness to your spouse. Here are the words of the prophet Malachi as they appear in a contemporary English translation of the Bible: You have broken your promise to the wife you married when you were young. She was your partner, and you have broken…
Return Unto Me | Malachi 3:7
In my previous role as a bishop, as each year ended, I was blessed to meet with families to discuss tithing. In those meetings I would share a brief thought, which typically included a reference to Malachi 3:8-12. One year, I focused my remarks on Malachi 3:10 wherein the Lord invites His people to “prove…
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