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05 May 17, 2015, Malachi 1;1-11 True Hope

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05 May 17, 2015, Malachi 1;1-11 True Hope

  1. 1. Malachi 1:1-11 True Hope May 17, 2015 First Baptist Church Jackson, Mississippi USA What’s the number one thing? The Glory of God! http://eat-art.org/images/uploads/The_Glory_of_God_(1).jpg http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-KFOtNWjTX5s/UdT_aGKSebI/AAAAAAAAAB0/ieKqL_IsJHg/s960/1031-wallpaper-slide-v2.gif Corinthians 10:31 NKJV 31 Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.
  2. 2. May Memory Verse: 2 Corinthians 9:7 NIV 7 Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. We have three challenges that the Education Department has placed before us in 2015: http://kazyoung.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/Challenge.jpg 1.) Memorize the monthly memory verses and know each month we are hiding God’s Word in our heart. http://rejoiceministries.org/images/hiding-gods-word-banner.jpg January verse: Romans 10:9 February verse: Ephesians 2:8-9 March verse: Romans 3:23 April verse: I Peter 1:3 2.) Share your faith with one person each month and build a relationship with them, so they will become a believer in 2015 as God uses you to plant seeds with that person. Luke 19:11-27 http://beavercreekchristian.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/11/becoming-a-disciple-maker.jpg
  3. 3. 3). Ask two Sunday School class members to share how they have seen God at work during the week. http://www.tillhecomes.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/07/God_At_Work.jpg J. Vernon McGee's Thru The Bible http://a5.mzstatic.com/us/r30/Podcasts6/v4/32/5f/79/325f79f3-a0f1-02e5-5382- d8d519585dbe/mza_8884854500008393311.255x255-75.jpg Ray Stedman 1917-1992 http://ts4.mm.bing.net/th?id=JN.LHXpNLLW2%2bWUmsfK%2bpeesw&pid=15.1 Warren Wiersbe http://onedesertrose.files.wordpress.com/2010/11/wiersbe_warren.jpg
  4. 4. Malachi, the last book of the Old Testament, is separated from the book of Matthew by a silent period of more than 400 years, and yet, these two books tie together in a remarkable way. http://ts1.mm.bing.net/th?&id=JN.JWVXmuXqbP0JVOpltGNYDA&w=300&h=300&c=0&pid=1.9&rs=0&p=0&r=0 http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-iA9h-x46ziE/TyiNA1arhiI/AAAAAAAACOA/7QIl- M_2mGg/s1600/timeline+three+returns+from+exile+BKC.gif http://prophecytracker.org/wp/uploads/2013/01/5-2_salvation-old-new-testament.jpg
  5. 5. Historically, there was a long, long time when no voice spoke for God, no prophet came to Israel. There were no Scriptures being written. There was no encouragement from God. The heavens were silent. Still, history was going on, and remarkable things were taking place in Israel and among the Jews. New institutions were being formed that appear in the opening of the New Testament, but none of this is recorded for us in the sacred history. • Malachi is the last of the Minor Prophets and the last prophetic voice to speak to Israel. Malachi means “My messenger." http://ts1.mm.bing.net/th?id=JN.YgRG4RvE4%2fPuPV6RxhkznQ&w=227&h=169&c=7&rs=1&qlt=90&o=4&pid=1.1 He is the Western Union boy who brings the last message from God to the people of Israel. • This last book of our Old Testament centers around the theme of a messenger of God and a prediction of the coming of another messenger. In this, therefore, we have a direct tie between Malachi and the New Testament. Chapter 3, for instance, begins with this prophecy: Malachi 3:1a NKJV 1a “Behold, I send My messenger, And he will prepare the way before Me.”
  6. 6. As we discover in the book of Matthew, that messenger was John the Baptist. http://calvarybaptistjs.org/storage/story-of-hope/22- John%20the%20Baptist%20Proclamation.png?__SQUARESPACE_CACHEVERSION=1269027162090 John came to prepare the way of the Lord and to announce the coming of the second Messenger from God. http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-D2eYlaZe5AU/UBuy6I4-yBI/AAAAAAAACUU/j-rvCd5zVSg/s1600/John-the-Baptist.jpg That second Messenger is also in this prophecy in the next phrase of Malachi 3:1b. http://saintanthonyofpadua.net/messaggero/upload/foto/0407_10.jpg Malachi 3:1b NKJV 1b “And the Lord, Whom you seek, Will suddenly come to His temple, Even the Messenger of the covenant, In Whom you delight. Behold, He is coming,” Says the Lord of hosts.
  7. 7. It was the work of the Lord Jesus on the closing night of His ministry to take wine and bread with His disciples and holding the cup up to say, "This is My blood of the [new] covenant." (Matt. 26:28) The Messenger of the covenant is the Lord Jesus Himself! Now the trouble with the people in Malachi's day was that they had forgotten the great and central message of God and as we go back to the start of the book of Malachi, we see that the prophet opens on that note (chapter 1, verse 1): Malachi 1:1-2a NKJV 1 The burden of the word of the Lord to Israel by Malachi. 2a “I have loved you,” says the Lord. Like Nahum (1:1) and Habakkuk (1:1), Malachi called his message a "burden." • A "burden" is a judgment, a judgment from God, and it will be a very strong and rigorous rebuke that God will give to them. The prophets were men who personally felt "the burden of the Lord" as God gave them insight into the hearts of the people and the problems of their society. “Father, break my heart over the same things that break Your heart.” http://media-cache-ec0.pinimg.com/736x/1e/9c/6f/1e9c6f4bd0defd8b6471b1d4184404bd.jpg It wasn't easy for Malachi to strip the veneer off the piety of the priests and expose their hypocrisy, or to repeat to the people the complaints they were secretly voicing against the Lord, but that's what God called him to do.
  8. 8. “The task of a prophet," writes Eugene Peterson, "is not to smooth things over but to make things right.” http://newdisciplesministry.com/yahoo_site_admin/assets/images/cleansing_the_temple.109185700_std.jpg Malachi 1:2 NKJV 2 “I have loved you,” says the Lord. “Yet you say, ‘In what way have You loved us?’ Was not Esau Jacob’s brother?” Says the Lord. “Yet Jacob I have loved; That is always the message of God's prophets. "I have loved you," says the Lord. Now how do you think that these people are going to respond to that? The amazing thing is that these people answer the prophet with the words, 2b “In what way have You loved us?” Remember that they have returned to the land and although they are discouraged about the rebuilding of the walls of Jerusalem, there is a show of prosperity and they are going through the form of worship in the rebuilt temple. They are going through the ritual of it, and on the surface everything looks good. But, oh, are they a sarcastic, supercilious, sophisticated, blasé group!
  9. 9. Can you believe that these people would doubt God and have the audacity to speak to Him like that? https://darrellcreswell.files.wordpress.com/2011/09/gods-love.jpg I'm not sure but what there are a great many people today in the church who would raise that same question and say, "Look at the things that are happening to us today. How can you say that God loves us?" Well, God made it very clear to Israel from the very beginning that He loved them. It is interesting that you go a long way into the Bible before you find God telling anybody that He loved them. When you get to Deuteronomy you're out in the wilderness and you've been out there for forty years, and it is going to be pretty hard to make anybody believe that God loves him. But listen to what Moses says in Deuteronomy 10:15: 15 The Lord delighted only in your fathers, to love them; God simply had not been saying that to anyone. From Genesis through the time of the Flood and afterwards, God never told anybody that He loved them. God didn't tell Abraham that He loved him (but He did, of course). The point is that God was in no hurry to let mankind know that He loved them until He says in Deuteronomy 10:15. Deuteronomy 10:15 NKJV 15 The Lord delighted only in your fathers, to love them; and He chose their descendants after them, you above all peoples, as it is this day.
  10. 10. Now God is prepared to prove what He has said, and His answer is this: Malachi 1:2b-3 2b Was not Esau Jacob’s brother? Says the Lord. “Yet Jacob I have loved; 3 But Esau I have hated, And laid waste his mountains and his heritage For the jackals of the wilderness.” This is a tremendous statement that God makes to them. The people were questioning, they were doubting the love of God, and God reminds them of the origin of their nation. This entire book is a series of responses on the part of the people to the challenges of God. http://www.harvestdurham.ca/Content/10442/2011Wallpapers/Malachi_Wallpaper.jpg Seven times you will find them saying, "How? How does this happen? Prove it." As we go through these verses you can see how they reveal the state of this people's heart. Here is an outgoing God---God is always pouring out His love---but yet here is a callous people who have become so indifferent and so unresponsive to God that in perfect sincerity they can say, "We don't see this. What do you mean? Why do You say these things to us?" Throughout the book, this is the theme. http://montesanobaptist.com/wp-content/themes/Micah/604x272xthumb.php,qsrc=,hwww.montesanobaptist.com,_wp- content,_uploads,_2014,_05,_Malachi_Featured.jpg,ah=272,aw=604,azc=1.pagespeed.ic.XBwX_aDP1p.jpg
  11. 11. Now God's answer to their question, "How have You loved us?" is to remind them that He loved them even back in the beginning of their race with Jacob and Esau. Jacob and Esau were twins. God made a difference between them at the very beginning (see Gen. 25:22- 23), but it was about fifteen hundred years before He stated as He does here that He loved Jacob. God never said this until Jacob and Esau had become two great nations which had long histories. Therefore, God said that He loved Jacob because of the fact that He knew what was in Jacob's heart. Foreknowledge does not mean foreordained. http://livingthescripture.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/images-72.jpg He knew that here was Jacob who had a desire for Him and that Esau did not have a desire for Him at all. • But it had to be worked out in fifteen hundred years of history before God was prepared to make the kind of statement He makes here in Malachi. The difference here between loving and hating is simply that the life of the nation that came from Esau, which is Edom, and the life of the nation which came from Jacob, which is Israel, demonstrate that God was right when He said that He loved one and hated the other and all of this reveals that if God loves, God also hates -- because you cannot love without hating? http://ts1.mm.bing.net/th?&id=JN.4s345xWn3hqVpdZIbAxRag&w=300&h=300&c=0&pid=1.9&rs=0&p=0&r=0
  12. 12. Love and hate are very close together, if God loves the good, He has to hate the evil -- it couldn't be otherwise -- and that is exactly what we find here. • The histories of the nation of Israel and the nation of Edom are altogether different. Malachi 1:2-3 NKJV 2 “I have loved you,” says the Lord. “Yet you say, ‘In what way have You loved us?’ Was not Esau Jacob’s brother?” Says the Lord. “Yet Jacob I have loved; 3 But Esau I have hated, And laid waste his mountains and his heritage For the jackals of the wilderness.” He says, "Take a look at the whole race. Esau's history has been one of continual disturbance and disaster and trouble because," He says, "I have loved Jacob but I have hated Esau. If you want to understand My love, look at one who has not been enjoying My love. Look at Esau and see how different his story is from yours, even though Jacob and Esau were twin brothers." http://calvarywyncote.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/01/Jacob-and-Esau3-960x350.jpg The first sin Malachi named was the people's lack of love for God. That was the first sin Jesus mentioned when He wrote to the seven churches of Asia Minor (Rev. 2:4), and perhaps it's listed first because lack of love for God is the source of all other sin. For centuries, the Jews have recited "The Shema" as their daily prayer: "Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one! You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your might" (Deut. 6:4-5, NKJV). But the people Malachi preached to doubted that God even loved them, so why should they love Him?  The prophet presented several evidences of God's love for Israel, the first of which is God's clear statement of His love (Mal. 1:2a).
  13. 13. Malachi was probably referring to what the Lord said through Moses in the Book of Deuteronomy, particularly 7:6-11. • When God gave the Law at Sinai, the emphasis was, "Obey My Law because I am a holy God." But when Moses reviewed the Law for the new generation, the emphasis was, "Obey the Lord because He loves you and you love Him." Both motives (God’s holiness and God’s love) are valid today. God’s hate troubles many people, but you also find the explanation in the book of Hebrews in the N T. • There we are told that Esau was a despiser of his birthright and therefore was one who placed no value on spiritual matters (Heb. 12:16). Hebrews 12:16 NKJV 16 lest there be any fornicator or profane person like Esau, who for one morsel of food sold his birthright. Esau treated God with utter indifference. He viewed the things that God regarded as valuable as if they were trivial, and he treated them that way. It is because of Esau's attitude that God says, “I have loved Jacob but I hated Esau.” In essence God says, “I loved Jacob because in the heart of Jacob is the hunger after the deeper things of life; Jacob wants something more than what is on the surface.” That always draws out the heart of God and this is characteristic of the nation as well. http://serfvic.com/pictures/12%20TRIBES%20OF%20ISRAEL.jpg
  14. 14. Another evidence Malachi gives for God's love is God's evident blessing on the people of Israel (v4-5). http://rlv.zcache.com/god_loves_israel_poster-p2284057308392359543sku_400.jpg#god%20loves%20israel%27 Malachi 1:4-5 NKJV 4 Even though Edom has said, “We have been impoverished, But we will return and build the desolate places,” Thus says the Lord of hosts: “They may build, but I will throw down; They shall be called the Territory of Wickedness, And the people against whom the Lord will have indignation forever. 5 Your eyes shall see, And you shall say, ‘The Lord is magnified beyond the border of Israel.’ Malachi 1:4-5 NKJV Like other nations in that area, Edom suffered during the Babylonian invasion of Israel, but the Lord didn't promise to restore their land as He promised the Jews. The proud Edomites boasted that they would quickly have their land in good shape, but God had other plans. • The Message says it this way: “People will take one look at you and say, ‘Land of Evil!’ and ‘the God-cursed tribe!’” God called Edom "The Wicked Land" (v. 4, NIV), but Israel He called "the holy land" (Zechariah 2:12). Keep in mind that the Edomites were indeed an evil people (see Obad. 8-14) who deserved every judgment God sent their way. (treated Israel badly)  To the Jews, the Babylonian invasion was a chastening, but to Edom, it was a judgment.
  15. 15. http://3dmovements.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/punish-discipline.jpg http://focusonthefamily.com/parenting/effective_biblical_discipline/effective-child- discipline/~/media/017532D4D96E4B208761A4B697E40250.ashx?w=457&h=254&as=1 Hebrews 12:5-11 NKJV 5 And you have forgotten the exhortation which speaks to you as to sons: “My son, do not despise the chastening of the Lord, Nor be discouraged when you are rebuked by Him; 6 For whom the Lord loves He chastens, And scourges every son whom He receives.” 7 If you endure chastening, God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom a father does not chasten? 8 But if you are without chastening, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate and not sons. 9 Furthermore, we have had human fathers who corrected us, and we paid them respect. Shall we not much more readily be in subjection to the Father of spirits and live? 10 For they indeed for a few days chastened us as seemed best to them, but He for our profit, that we may be partakers of His holiness. 11 Now no chastening seems to be joyful for the present, but painful; nevertheless, afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it. Hebrews 12:5-11 NKJV
  16. 16. Think of how God showed His love to the Jewish people. First, He spared the Jews who were in exile in Babylon (see Jer. 29). Then, He moved Cyrus to issue the decree that enabled the Jews to return to Judah and rebuild the temple. http://eaglesinleadership.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/05/rebuild_the_temple.gif He provided the leadership of Joshua the high priest, Zerubbabel, Nehemiah, and Ezra, as well as the prophetic ministry of Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi. http://ptl2010.files.wordpress.com/2010/12/bible_minor_prophets1.gif Had His people obeyed the terms of the covenant, the Lord would have blessed them even more – He will never bless disobedience.  Yes, they were a weak remnant, but the Lord was with them and promised to bless them.
  17. 17. Note that the name God uses in Malachi 1:4 is "Lord of hosts" ("Lord Almighty" in the NIV), that is, "the Lord of the armies," a name used 24 times in Malachi and nearly 300 times in the Old Testament. This is the "military" name of God, for "hosts" comes from a Hebrew word which means "to wage war." http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-JQBwxaYs1_Q/UTZ2UXtM5XI/AAAAAAAAADM/cUuQQeLtAMo/s1600/Lord+of+Armies.jpg The Lord is the Commander of the hosts and Heaven: the stars (Isa. 40:26; Gen. 2:1), the angels (Ps. 103:20-21), the armies of Israel (Ex. 12:41), and all who trust in Him (Ps. 46:7, 11). Finally, Malachi reminded the Jews of the great privilege God gave them to witness to the Gentiles (Malachi 1:5). Malachi 1:5 NKJV 5 Your eyes shall see, And you shall say, ‘The Lord is magnified beyond the border of Israel.’ During the reigns of David and Solomon, God manifested His glory through the nation of Israel so that the Gentiles came from distant lands to see what was happening in Israel. When God brought His remnant back to the land, He wanted to bless them and once again manifest His glory through them, but they failed to trust Him and obey His law. Though they had been chastened by God and ruined by Babylon, and though they had lost the esteem of the Gentile nations around them, the Jews could have made a new start and witnessed to the Gentiles of the grace and mercy of God.
  18. 18. Instead, they lapsed into the sins that Malachi attacks in his book, and they gave but a weak witness to the other nations. They missed their opportunity to glorify God (as we do today). We need to remind ourselves that the trials we experience as individuals or congregations are also opportunities to glorify God before a watching world. Right now First Baptist Church Jackson has a unique opportunity! That's how Paul viewed his imprisonment and possible death in Rome (Phil. 1:12- 26), and that's the way we must look at the testings God sends our way. Will we remain unified and loving? Philippians 1:12 NKJV 12 But I want you to know, brethren, that the things which happened to me have actually turned out for the furtherance of the Gospel, http://wallpaper.knowing-jesus.com/file/4056/600x338/16:9/philippians-1-12-the-greater-progress-of-the-gospel- brown_359245793.jpg Every difficulty is an opportunity to demonstrate to others what the Lord can do for those who put their trust in Him. http://media-cache-ec0.pinimg.com/736x/cb/a8/0a/cba80a3eaef1256d1e87cc98dbf00a91.jpg
  19. 19. No calm sea ever produced a skillful mariner. http://wetcanvas.com/Community/images/11-Aug-2010/106809-Rough_Sea.jpg Now Malachi directs his message especially to the priests (1:6; 2:1, 7-8), who, instead of living exemplary lives, were guilty of breaking the very Law they were supposed to obey and teach. The way they were serving the Lord was a disgrace to His name. Seven times in this section you find the phrase "My name" (1:6, 11, 14; 2:2, 5; see also 3:16 and 4:2), referring to God's character and reputation. http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-VJZh5tNb38k/TgD8m10GOPI/AAAAAAAAB9k/wv3nrHliMt8/s1600/character-of-god- 714838.jpg The priests who were supposed to honor God's name were disgracing it before the people and the Lord. http://ts1.mm.bing.net/th?&id=JN.1YGczgssskTWn4K%2bsnYtIA&w=300&h=300&c=0&pid=1.9&rs=0&p=0&r=0
  20. 20. https://bible.org/assets/pagegrapics/para-1.gif The priests were supposed to be God's children, yet they weren't honoring their Father; they were called to be God's servants, yet they showed no respect for their Master. Malachi 1:6 NKJV 6 “A son honors his father, And a servant his master. If then I am the Father, Where is My honor? And if I am a Master, Where is My reverence? Says the Lord of hosts To you priests who despise My name. Yet you say, ‘In what way have we despised Your name?’ That is God's charge – You despise My name. They said, "How have we despised your name? We don't see this. What do you mean?" And the Lord answers (verse 7): Malachi 1:7 NKJV 7 “You offer defiled food on My altar, But say, ‘In what way have we defiled You?’ By saying, ‘The table of the Lord is contemptible.’
  21. 21. "Your attitude and your actions toward Me are shoddy. You are content to give Me just the trash, the defiled things." http://biblestudyoutlines.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/10/nadab-and-abihu-offered-strange-fire.jpg But they pursue it further. Whenever you ask God how, He will tell you, and again God makes it very clear. God says (verse 8): Malachi 1:8 NKJV 8 And when you offer the blind as a sacrifice, Is it not evil? And when you offer the lame and sick, Is it not evil? Offer it then to your governor! Would he be pleased with you? Would he accept you favorably?” Says the Lord of hosts. These animals had to be perfect; nothing imperfect (blind, lame, sick) could be brought to the altar of God and accepted (Deut. 15:19-23; Lev. 22:17-33). http://jandsmministries.com/images/message/messe_mar3_08.jpg
  22. 22. After all, these sacrifices pointed to the Lamb of God Who would one day die for the sins of the world (John 1:29; Heb. 10:1-14), and if they were imperfect, how could they typify the Perfect Sacrifice, the Son of God? God was telling them that the offering they offered was really a picture of the Lord Jesus Christ Who is the perfect Lamb of God Who takes away the sin of the world. • Any imperfect offering was an insult to the Lord Jesus Christ. "You people that are content to be sloppy about your religious experience, try living that way in your business life and see if you get by with it. And yet you say you are honoring My name. You are claiming to be My people and to worship Me.” http://pathwayofblessing.files.wordpress.com/2009/09/hypocrite.jpg?w=288 For one thing, the priests themselves weren't giving God their best, so why make greater demands on the people? "Like priests, like people" (Hosea 4:9; Jer. 5:30-31), for no ministry rises any higher than its leaders. So the priests settled for less than the best and encouraged the people to bring whatever was available. • A sick animal would die anyway, and crippled animals were useless, so the people might as well give them to the Lord!
  23. 23. They forgot that "to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams" (1 Sam. 15:22; Ps. 51:16-17; Micah 6:6-8; Mark 12:28-34). http://media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/79/23/a9/7923a92ddd982a7b3e755de3a3bf981e.jpg The God of reality always cuts right through all the excuses and all the flimflam of hypocrisy right down to the real issue. http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_I_rRqZjTqu0/TP5iguM1RDI/AAAAAAAAA1A/jg_NHHIMoy0/s1600/pharisee_self-righteous.jpg Malachi 1:9-14 The Message (MSG) 9 “Get on your knees and pray that I will be gracious to you. You priests have gotten everyone in trouble. With this kind of conduct, do you think I’ll pay attention to you?” God-of-the-Angel-Armies asks you. 10 “Why doesn’t one of you just shut the Temple doors and lock them? Then none of you can get in and play at religion with this silly, empty-headed worship. I am not pleased. The God-of-the-Angel-Armies is not pleased. And I don’t want any more of this so-called worship! http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-mjqFqGQhnSw/Tp0Y6okZJrI/AAAAAAAACYc/s7k6AvkwxnY/s1600/please.jpg
  24. 24. 11 “I am honored all over the world. And there are people who know how to worship Me all over the world, who honor Me by bringing their best to Me. They’re saying it everywhere: ‘God is greater, this God-of-the-Angel-Armies.’ 12-13 “All except you. Instead of honoring Me, you profane Me. You profane Me when you say, ‘Worship is not important, and what we bring to worship is of no account,’ and when you say, ‘I’m bored—this doesn’t do anything for Me.’ You act so superior, sticking your noses in the air—act superior to Me, God-of-the- Angel-Armies! And when you do offer something to Me, it’s a hand-me-down, or broken, or useless. Do you think I’m going to accept it? This is God speaking to you! 14 “A curse on the person who makes a big show of doing something great for Me—an expensive sacrifice, say—and then at the last minute brings in something puny and worthless! I’m a great king, God-of-the-Angel-Armies, honored far and wide, and I’ll not put up with it!” Malachi 1:9-14 The Message (MSG) They actually despised God when they approached worship like that. • It was Dr. G. Campbell Morgan who years ago made the statement, “I am more afraid of the profanity of the sanctuary than I am of the profanity of the street.” Profane – to treat something sacred with irreverence or disrespect. http://www.ziondeerfield.org/home/wp-content/uploads/2012/06/The-Wonder-of-Worship.jpg When the offering is taken in the average church, there is actually lots more profanity taking place there than down in the slums of the city where the drunkards are. Why? Because there is a great deal of put-on, of hypocrisy, taking place in the sanctuary today.
  25. 25. When the One Who was here 2,000 years ago sat by the treasury and watched how the people gave, I am sure that some of them thought, "What business has He to see how I give?" He happened to be the Lord Jesus Christ, and I'm not sure but that on Sunday morning He looks over your shoulder as you give. Are you only giving what you give for a good meal when you eat out? Are you giving as generously to the Lord's work as you do to other things where it makes a show? • The old sick cow is still being taken to church today and that is the method that Israel used; and the Lord didn't let it pass. He is saying here in a very definite way that you cannot bring Him a sick cow. Your giving is supposed to be on the basis of love. May Memory Verse: 2 Corinthians 9:7 “Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.” The Lord Jesus said, "If ye love Me, keep My commandments" (John 14:15). You see it again in the charges that God lays against them concerning their attitudes in worship. They were being professional about their worship and they were utterly bored. Now what is wrong here? Where has all the excitement gone? These are always the symptoms of a people who think God will be content with something less than love. The great commandment is, "You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul and with all your mind...and your neighbor as yourself." (Matthew 22:37-39) Nothing else will satisfy God.
  26. 26. But here is a people who have been surrounded by God's love and the recipients of His grace for centuries and yet their hearts have become so blinded that they cannot even see how they are offending Him and insulting Him with what they do. The reason this is so is that their own love for Him has died. The death of love is always reflected in a callous attitude and this is what you see here. Do you have religion, or do you have Christ? Do you come here to truly worship God or are you just going through the form of it? Are you a “good Christian” on Sunday morning but put it aside when you are not in church? http://media-cache-ec0.pinimg.com/736x/45/aa/e4/45aae4bbcc4e16d818eed8c6cdb17d9a.jpg The Gospel According to You You are writing a gospel, a chapter each day, by deeds that you do, by words that you say; People read what you write, whether faithless or true, say, “What is the gospel according to you?” Spiritual worship became wearisome to the people of Israel because they didn't love the Word of God. You have to love the Word of God and this is one way in which the Bible is different from any other book. Any other book you must read before you love it, and you must understand it before you can love it. But you must love the Word of God before you can understand it - the Spirit of God is not teaching lazy folk.
  27. 27. http://4.bp.blogspot.com/- gBZH07CUtOk/UCltIh6fzaI/AAAAAAAAAaE/G8vlJCfIVqA/s1600/Bible,+Author+Always+Present.jpg The Bible is the only Book that reads you as you read it! http://wordsfromcalvary.files.wordpress.com/2011/12/bible-light-rays.jpg http://ts1.mm.bing.net/th?&id=JN.qm6xfWg1fOcBFzlWktrlAg&w=300&h=300&c=0&pid=1.9&rs=0&p=0&r=0 The day will come when the Gentiles will worship God and magnify His great name (v. 11). Malachi looked ahead to the time when the message of salvation would be taken to all nations, and beyond that, he saw the establishing of the kingdom on earth when the Gentiles would "flow into it" (Isa. 2:2; see also 11:3-4, 9; 45:22-25; 49:5-7).
  28. 28. God's call to Abraham involved the Jews becoming a blessing to the whole earth (Gen. 12:1-3), just as His call to the church involves taking the Gospel to all nations (Mark 16:15). The priests even allowed the people to cheat on their vows (Mal. 1:13-14). • If a man promised God a sacrifice but brought an animal that was sick or blemished, the priest would accept it, even though the man had a perfect animal back home. In the Mosaic Law, vows were purely voluntary, but once they were made, they were binding (Lev. 27; Num. 30; Deut. 23:21-23). If the governor wouldn't accept cheap offerings (Mal. 1:8), would a great king accept cheap substitutes (v. 14)? God is a great King and He deserves the best we can bring Him. What we promise, we must perform. Why did the priests deliberately disobey their own law, pollute the altar of the Lord, and encourage the people to worship God in a cheap, careless manner? The priests and their families were fed from the meat off the altar, and the priests wanted to be sure they had food on the table. After all, the economy was bad, taxes were high, and money was scarce, and only the most devoted Israelite would bring a perfect animal to the Lord. Verse 14 says, "But cursed be the deceiver, which hath in his flock a male, and voweth, and sacrificeth unto the Lord a corrupt thing." • Here is something else people do: making vows to God and then not following through on them. We find it taught both in Leviticus and Proverbs that God does not want us telling Him something unless we mean it. • If you promise to do something for God, you had better go through with it because God means business. He doesn't ask you to make the vow -- it is voluntary -- but if you make that vow, be sure that you go through with it. There were people in Israel who were making great protestations, saying, "It looks like we're going to have a bumper crop this year. I am going to give the Lord not only a tenth, but I'm going to give some freewill offerings to Him."
  29. 29. But then when the harvest came in abundance, they decided they would keep it for themselves. • They decided they would not turn it over to the Lord after all. • Instead, they offered to God the corrupt, the lame, and the sick. The Plan of Hope & Salvation John 3:16 NKJV 16 “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” John 14:6 NKJV 6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” Romans 3:23 NKJV 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, Romans 6:23a NKJV 23a For the wages of sin is death,  Death in this life (the first death) is 100%.  Even Jesus, the only one who doesn’t deserve death, died in this life to pay the penalty for our sins.  The death referred to in Romans 6:23a is the second death explained in Revelation 21:8. Revelation 21:8 NKJV 8 “But the cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.” Romans 5:8 NKJV 8 But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 6:23b NKJV 23b but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Revelation 21:7 NKJV 7 “He who overcomes shall inherit all things, and I will be his God and he shall be My son.”  Romans 10:9-10 explains to us how to accept Jesus as our Savior.
  30. 30. Romans 10:9-10 NKJV 9 that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. Romans 10:13 NKJV 13 For “whoever calls on the name of the LORD shall be saved.” If you have questions or would like to know more, Please, contact First Baptist Church Jackson at 601-979-1900 or http://firstbaptistjackson.org/contact/

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