God of Justice will unleach his wrath in the end times

Malachi 3-4: God’s Awesome Last Words on Justice in the Old Testament

Malachi is God’s farewell address to the Jews for a while. After that, He is silent for 400 years. Remember the last question in chapter 2? Where is the God of Justice? Well, here’s the answer and most people won’t like it. Let’s dig in…

Before digging in, let’s review the end of chapter 2…

17 You have wearied the Lord with your words.

“How have we wearied him?” you ask.

You have wearied him by saying that all who do evil are good in the Lord’s sight, and he is pleased with them. You have wearied him by asking, “Where is the God of justice?”

Malachi 2:17 NLT

Malachi 3 – The Coming Day of Judgment

“Look! I am sending my messenger, and he will prepare the way before me. Then the Lord you are seeking will suddenly come to his Temple. The messenger of the covenant, whom you look for so eagerly, is surely coming,” says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies.

“But who will be able to endure it when he comes? Who will be able to stand and face him when he appears? For he will be like a blazing fire that refines metal, or like a strong soap that bleaches clothes. He will sit like a refiner of silver, burning away the dross. He will purify the Levites, refining them like gold and silver, so that they may once again offer acceptable sacrifices to the Lord. Then once more the Lord will accept the offerings brought to him by the people of Judah and Jerusalem, as he did in the past.

“At that time I will put you on trial. I am eager to witness against all sorcerers and adulterers and liars. I will speak against those who cheat employees of their wages, who oppress widows and orphans, or who deprive the foreigners living among you of justice, for these people do not fear me,” says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies.

A Call to Repentance

“I am the Lord, and I do not change. That is why you descendants of Jacob are not already destroyed. Ever since the days of your ancestors, you have scorned my decrees and failed to obey them. Now return to me, and I will return to you,” says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies.

“But you ask, ‘How can we return when we have never gone away?’

“Should people cheat God? Yet you have cheated me!

“But you ask, ‘What do you mean? When did we ever cheat you?’

“You have cheated me of the tithes and offerings due to me. You are under a curse, for your whole nation has been cheating me. 10 Bring all the tithes into the storehouse so there will be enough food in my Temple. If you do,” says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies, “I will open the windows of heaven for you. I will pour out a blessing so great you won’t have enough room to take it in! Try it! Put me to the test! 11 Your crops will be abundant, for I will guard them from insects and disease. Your grapes will not fall from the vine before they are ripe,” says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies. 12 “Then all nations will call you blessed, for your land will be such a delight,” says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies.

13 “You have said terrible things about me,” says the Lord.

“But you say, ‘What do you mean? What have we said against you?’

14 “You have said, ‘What’s the use of serving God? What have we gained by obeying his commands or by trying to show the Lord of Heaven’s Armies that we are sorry for our sins? 15 From now on we will call the arrogant blessed. For those who do evil get rich, and those who dare God to punish them suffer no harm.’”

The Lord’s Promise of Mercy

16 Then those who feared the Lord spoke with each other, and the Lord listened to what they said. In his presence, a scroll of remembrance was written to record the names of those who feared him and always thought about the honor of his name.

17 “They will be my people,” says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies. “On the day when I act in judgment, they will be my own special treasure. I will spare them as a father spares an obedient child. 18 Then you will again see the difference between the righteous and the wicked, between those who serve God and those who do not.”

Malachi 3 NLT

Malachi 4

The Lord of Heaven’s Armies says, “The day of judgment is coming, burning like a furnace. On that day the arrogant and the wicked will be burned up like straw. They will be consumed—roots, branches, and all.

“But for you who fear my name, the Sun of Righteousness will rise with healing in his wings. And you will go free, leaping with joy like calves let out to pasture. On the day when I act, you will tread upon the wicked as if they were dust under your feet,” says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies.

“Remember to obey the Law of Moses, my servant—all the decrees and regulations that I gave him on Mount Sinai for all Israel.

“Look, I am sending you the prophet Elijah before the great and dreadful day of the Lord arrives. His preaching will turn the hearts of fathers to their children, and the hearts of children to their fathers. Otherwise I will come and strike the land with a curse.”

Malachi 4 NLT

And that is the end of the Old Testament.

So, what happened between Malachi and Matthew? I’ll be doing a historical write-up on those 400 years. Was God really silent? Subscribe so you don’t miss out.

From Moses to Malachi, God had a relationship with the Israelites through prophets. These last 2 chapters are very memorable. Think of when you hear a song and it sticks in your head for hours, if not days. Likewise, that was God’s strategy with this final message. Here are key points…

Key Points

Pastor Sandy Adams comments

He's got the whole world in His hands ready for justice! Image by Good News Productions International from FreeBibleImages.org. (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0)
He’s got the whole world in His hands ready for justice! Image by Good News Productions International from FreeBibleImages.org. (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0)

In a nutshell the message of Malachi is to fear the Lord. I’ve heard it said, “It’s more dangerous to trifle with God than to bear your chest to a blizzard, or play with a rattlesnake.”

Do we trifle with Almighty God? Do we take Him for granted? Or do we show Him the respect and give Him the allegiance He deserves? Malachi was God’s last word to the Jewish people before the coming of their Messiah. God meant for this message to ring in His people’s ears for 400 years. As we approach Jesus’ Second Coming, I believe the same message should be ringing in our ears today.

It’s interesting how the Old Testament (OT) ends. The final word is a “curse.” The Law of Moses included not only 613 commands, but also a series of blessings and curses. Under the Law you were required to keep the rules. If you obeyed you were blessed, but if you disobeyed you were cursed. The problem with the Law was it required a standard of righteousness that exceeded man’s ability to obtain. Try as they might, the Jews couldn’t live up to the Law’s demands. The outcome of their efforts is summed up in this final word – the very last word of the OT, “curse.” Man left up to his own devises and determination is cursed under the Law.

When the Jewish rabbis read the last verse of Malachi, they were so upset, and so unwilling to admit their failure they repeated verse 5 after verse 6 so that the OT ended with Elijah and victory, not a curse. Yet Malachi’s ending can’t be escaped. The Prophet is warning Israel of a coming curse unless they’re able to find a way to be righteous apart from the Law. Which of course, leads to the message of the New Testament (NT). The NT is good news (the Gospel). It revealed the means God provided to escape the Law’s curse. Jesus was made a curse for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Christ, and know His blessing. It’s interesting the OT ends with a curse. Whereas the NT ends with “grace.” The last word in the NT is Revelation 22:21, “The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen.” It’s a promise of blessing.

Galatians 3:13-14 sums it up this transition from OT to NT, “Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the Law, having become a curse for us… that the blessing… might come upon the gentiles in Christ Jesus.” The cross of Christ put an end to the curse, and now God pours out His grace to all who believe in His Son.

Sandy Adams

In conclusion, I thought we might need an understanding of the meaning of “the great and dreadful day of the Lord” that’s coming. Here are some synonyms for “dreadful”… terrible, frightful, horrible, grim, awful, dire; frightening, terrifying, horrifying, alarming; distressing, shocking, appalling, harrowing; ghastly, fearful, hideous, horrendous, monstrous, unspeakable, gruesome, tragic, calamitous, grievous, grisly…

There is only ONE WAY — THE WAY — to escape this dreadful day of the Lord and that’s through the saving grace that Jesus freely gives to anyone who will accept it.

Have you accepted Jesus as your personal Lord and Savior?

If you’re not sure if you’re saved or not, if you truly want to be born again and have the assurance of salvation, receive the Holy Spirit, feel His Shalom — a peace that surpasses all understanding, and get a 1-way, non-stop ticket to Heaven after you die, or that you won’t be left behind at the Rapture, which can happen at any moment, this is what you have to do…

Believe. Repent. Be Baptized. Receive the Holy Spirit.

  • Believe — have Faith — that Jesus is the Christ and He died taking your sins away forever and that He rose from the dead 3 days later.
  • Repent of your sins — stop sinning! Do a complete 180-degree turn in your life and surrender your life to Him. When you ask Jesus to forgive you He will. ALL your sins will be wiped clean — past, present, and future! And All means ALL!
  • Be Baptized by water baptism — show the world and yourself that you have died to your old life and are born again in Christ.
  • Receive the gift of Holy Spirit in your heart.

Invite Jesus into Your Heart and Receive the Gift of Grace, Joy, Peace, and the Confident Hope of Eternal Life…

Soli Deo Gloria — To God Alone Be The Glory!

1 thought on “Malachi 3-4: God’s Awesome Last Words on Justice in the Old Testament”

  1. Pingback: Are We in Last Days or the End Times? It's Confusing!

Leave a Comment

Skip to content