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    Malachi

    Septuagint text: Our version of this book reads differently to other Bibles. Why? We use the much older Greek Septuagint manuscripts – and most will closely resemble the versions used by many 1st-century Christians, including the Apostles. These older manuscripts escaped the censorship applied to the Hebrew manuscripts. Our translation is created by volunteers, and we are always correcting and refining the text. Learn what [brackets] and other insertions mean.

    About this book A prophecy written after the Jews returned from Babylonian exile (during the time of Ezra and Nehemiah).It’s unclear exactly who the author was, since ‘Malachi’ is probably not someone’s name. The Hebrew name of the book is ‘Malaki,’ and just means ‘my messenger’ – and it doesn’t have the usual prefix or suffix of ‘jah’ found in most Jewish names. 1st century Jews believed that the author was actually Ezra. Whoever the author actually was, according to the Jewish tradition, he (or she) was the last prophet that God sent. This prophecy shows all the reasons why God had become displeased with His people and with their Priests – even at this early date.Indeed, after the coming of Jesus, the Judean cities were destroyed, the people were either killed or sold into captivity, and Temple-based Judaism led by the Priests was totally dissolved.The prophecy also contains references to the work of John the Baptist, the coming of Jesus (‘the Lord’), the final destruction of JeruSalem, and the respect that even the people of the nations (the gentiles) had for God and for His Name.

    1

    1This is the matter of the word of Jehovah concerning IsraEl [that came] by the hand of His messenger.[‘For God says:]2‘I have loved you,’ says Jehovah...‘But you’ve asked:‘How have You loved us?’‘Wasn’t Esau the brother of Jacob?’ asked Jehovah,‘Yet, although I loved Jacob, 3I disliked [his brother];So I ordered an end to his bordersAnd I gave him a home in the desert.4‘And because Edom will say,Although we’ve been cut down,We’ll return and rebuild our [homes]…For this,’ says Jehovah the Almighty;‘If they rebuild them, I’ll still knock them down;For the ‘Lawless Borders,’ is what they’ll be called,And a ‘People Opposed to Jehovah.’5‘And when your eyes see this, you’ll say:‘Jehovah has been magnifiedFar beyond IsraEl’s borders.’6‘Fathers are glorified by their sonsAnd servants bring glory to their masters.But if I’m your father, where is My glory?And if I’m your Master, where is [your] fear?’‘...asks Jehovah the Almighty.‘You Priests treat My Name with contempt,Then ask how you’ve shown it dishonor…7By bringing unclean bread to My Altar!‘Then you ask how you’ve made it unclean…You do it when you say that My table’s unclean,And you treat it with contempt by the things that you bring!8‘For, when you offer [a lamb] who’s blind;Isn’t this something that’s evil?And when you bring Me the lame and the ill;Isn’t this [something that’s] wrong?‘Carry it instead to [your king](The man who [rules over] you)…Will this gift bring you his favor?Yes, when you present it to him,Will he bestow honor upon you?’‘...asks Jehovah the Almighty...‘No!’9‘Now, repent before the face of your God…Yes, come before Me and beg!With all the bad being done by your hands,Should I accept such things from your souls?’‘...asks Jehovah the Almighty...‘No!’10‘Thus to you, the doors will be closed…So don’t come and ask for My favorBy igniting a fire on My Altar.‘There’s nothing at all that I need from you,’‘...says Jehovah the Almighty...‘So I won’t accept any [gifts] from your hands.11‘Among the rest of the nations(All from the sunrise to the sunset)My Name has been glorified.For, to My Name, they burn incense,And what they offer before Me is pure!‘Yes My Name is great among even the gentiles,’‘...says Jehovah the Almighty...12‘But, you still profane it whenever you say:‘The table of Jehovah is unclean!’‘And you treat the food that’s set before MeAs something that’s worthy of contempt.13‘For you say:It’s just too much trouble...‘And then, you [sniff in distain],’‘...says Jehovah the Almighty...‘As you bring Me game and the lame and the ill.‘Yes you’ve offered such things up to Me.But, when I receive these things from your hands,Do you think that I’ll show you favor?’‘...asks Jehovah the Almighty...‘No!’14‘Cursed is the powerful manWho has a male [sheep] in his flockAnd whose vow [to Me] is now due…But he offers Me something imperfect instead!For, no one is greater than I,’‘...says Jehovah the Almighty…‘My Name is known among even the gentiles!’

    2

    1‘O Priests,‘This is what I’m saying:2‘If you won’t listen and take it to heartThat My Name must be glorified,’‘...says Jehovah the Almighty...‘I’ll send curses upon you…I’ll curse all the things that you want me to bless…I’ll curse them and not let them happenIf you don’t take this message to heart.3‘{Look!} Although I’ve given the [lamb’s] shoulders to you;I can throw their dung in your faces…Their manure, I’ll send to your holiday feasts,And after that, I’ll remove you!4Then you’ll know that I am the OneWho sent these instructions to you.‘This is what I promised to Levi,’‘...says Jehovah the Almighty God...5‘For I made an agreement with him…An agreement that brings life and peace.I also [taught him to] fear Me,As I prepared him to glorify My Name.6‘The law of truth, [I put] into his mouth,And unrighteous words weren’t found on his lips.Straightforward in peace, he traveled with Me,And many, he turned from injustice.7‘So the Priests must safeguard the knowledgeThat used to come from his lips,And seek the laws that came from his mouth;For, he’d served as a messengerOf Jehovah the Almighty God.8‘But, you’ve turned from his ways,And many, you’ve turned from the Law…You’ve corrupted My sacred agreement with Levi...’‘...says Jehovah the Almighty...9‘So I’ve now handed you overTo those whom you view with contempt…To those whom even the gentilesFail to view with respect.For, you haven’t guarded My ways,And My people, you’ve turned from My Laws.10‘Don’t you each have one father,And weren’t you formed by one God?So, why have you each let your brothersProfane My Agreement with your fathers?11‘For this, I’m abandoning Judah…Because in IsraEl and JeruSalem,Disgusting things are now being done!‘Judah has profaned [My] most holy things(Things that I [dearly] loved)When they [turned] to alien gods.12‘So the Lord will destroy those who’ve done this,And Jacob’s tents will be humbled…Those who carry sacrifices [before Me].13‘Yes, you’re the ones who’ve done all these things,And that’s why I’ve come to hate you…For you’ve covered My Altar with tears!‘You’ve brought weeping and groaning upon it,Because of the troubles you’ve caused.For you thought I’d accept whatever you bringAs though it was truly worthy!14‘So the time has arrived when you’ll ask Me:‘Why have You done this [to us]?’It’s because the Lord has served as a witnessBetween you and the wives of your youth…Those whom you’ve sent away…Those who’ve [long] been your partners…Those to whom [you’ve sworn oaths]!15‘Because you’re doing such things,Don’t expect Me to send anything goodWith even small portions of My Holy Breath!‘Then you asked:‘What more than offspring does God want?’[I want you to] safeguard your spirits,And not to abandon the wives of your youth!16‘No, don’t detest them and send them away,Then cover it up in your minds,’‘...says Jehovah, IsraEl’s God.‘For, thus says Jehovah the Almighty God:‘Keep a close watch on your spirits,And don’t abandon [your women]!17‘You also provoke [Me] with things that you say…And then you ask how you’ve done this.You do it by saying before HimThat even the wicked are good…That He really thinks [kindly] of them,And that God doesn’t truly want justice.

    3

    1‘So, {Look!} I’ll be sending My messenger to you,To prepare the way for the face of the Lord(The one for whom you’ve been searching),And he’ll suddenly arrive at My Temple…This messenger of [My] Sacred Agreement.‘Look, he’s coming,’ says Jehovah the Almighty,2‘And who can endure the Day he arrivesYes, when he appears, who will stand?For he’ll enter like the fire of a furnaceAnd like bleach that’s used to do washing.3‘He’ll put his melting pot into a furnaceAs they do when they refine silver;Then the sons of Levi, he will refine,And he’ll pour them out like silver or gold.‘Then they’ll finally be found worthy to serve[Before Jehovah, the Almighty]…And they’ll offer sacrifices that are righteous.4Then once again, I’ll be as pleasedWith the offerings of Judah and JeruSalemAs I was in the days of the ages,And in the years of long ago.5‘Then I’ll come against you in judgment,And against all those who make potions.I’ll also be a swift witnessAgainst those who’re committing adulteryAnd swearing false oaths by My Name…Those who don’t pay their employees…Those who tyrannize orphans and widows,And to foreigners, won’t give any justice.‘Yes, these are the ones who don’t fear Me,’‘...says Jehovah the Almighty…6‘I’m Jehovah, your God, and I never change!7‘For you sons of Jacob just won’t turn awayFrom the sins of your fathers…You’ve not turned from them or guarded My Laws!‘[All I ask] is for you to turn back to Me,And then I’ll turn back to you.’‘...says Jehovah the Almighty...‘Yet you ask:‘From what do you want us to turn?’8‘Will a man be stomped on by God? No!Yet, you [are guilty] of stomping on Me!Then you ask:How have we been stomping on You?‘By holding back your first-fruits!9For you’ve turned from Me and stashed them away…This is how you’re stomping on Me!10‘This year has now come to an end,And you’ve harvested produce and stored it in barns…But your homes will soon all be ravaged!‘If you’ll just offer to Me what [is due],’‘...says Jehovah the Almighty...‘See if I don’t open to youAn outpouring of rain from the skies!‘Yes I’ll pour My blessings upon youUntil you’ve received [more than] enough.11For you, I’ll set aside food,And I’ll not destroy the fruit of your ground,Nor will I weaken your grapevines,’‘...says Jehovah the Almighty.12‘Then, all the nations will say that you’re blest,And your land will be one which is desired,’‘...says Jehovah the Almighty.13‘But, you’ve put Me down with your words,’ says Jehovah.‘And then you dare to [come here and] ask:‘How have we spoken against You?’14‘By your saying:‘Our service to God is in vain!’‘And:‘Although we’ve kept His instructions;Before Him, we still must come begging!15Therefore, we’ll bless foreign peoples,As well as those who are breaking the Law…And say that those who oppose God will live!’16‘Yet, there are some who still council their neighborsAnd speak of their fear of Jehovah.So the Lord will take notice and listen to this,Then write [their names] in the scrollOf those who show honor and still fear My Name.17‘And in that Day, they’ll be Mine,’‘...says the Almighty Jehovah...‘I’ll prepare a procurement and set them asideAs a man [shows favor] to the son that [obeys].18‘Then you’ll turn to look and you’ll seeThe things that’ll happen to the sinners…Yes, you’ll see what happens to those who serve GodAnd to those who prefer not to serve Him.’

    4

    1‘Look! The Day is about to arriveWhen they’ll be consumed in an oven…I’ll blaze against their arrogance and evil…In that day, they’ll be burned up like stubble,’‘...says Jehovah of Armies…‘No way will a branch or a root still remain!2‘But upon those who still fear My Name,The sun of righteousness will shine,And healing [will follow on] its wings.Then you’ll come here and leap like young calvesThat have been spared from the stock pens.3‘And on the lawless, you’ll trample…They’ll be like ashes under your feetIn the Day that I’ve prepared,’‘...says Jehovah the Almighty.4‘Remember the Laws of My servant Moses…Those that I gave him in that dry place,As well as the orders and decisionsThat I gave to IsraEl through him!5‘{Look!} I’ll send EliJah, the ProphetBefore the Great Day of the Lord.6He’ll restore the hearts of fathers to sons,And the hearts of men to their neighbors…So I won’t have to strike the whole land.’


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