“A son honors his father, and a servant his master. If then I am a father, where is my honor? And if I am a master, where is my fear? says the LORD of hosts to you, O priests, who despise my name. But you say, ‘How have we despised your name?’ By offering polluted food upon my altar. But you say, ‘How have we polluted you?’ By saying that the LORD’s table may be despised. When you offer blind animals in sacrifice, is that not evil? And when you offer those that are lame or sick, is that not evil? Present that to your governor; will he accept you or show you favor? says the LORD of hosts. And now entreat the favor of God, that he may be gracious to us. With such a gift from your hand, will he show favor to any of you? says the LORD of hosts. – Malachi 1:6-9 ESV
Does the WORD have a word for us today! Malachi is the last book of the Old Testament in time, chronological order, and in order of the layout of the Canon, the Bible. As with everything else in God’s Word, there are poly-purposes for all that God does. No man owns the truth- we are all OFF a little, some are more off than others. It is impossible to know the mind of God and all His purposive strivings, but there is no hiding the fact that God gets tired of the fake, and insincere actions of His creatures and His children. Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways! “For who has known the mind of the Lord, or who has been his counselor?” “Or who has given a gift to him that he might be repaid?” (Romans 11:33-35)
Leader, God tells us IN THE BEGINNING that we are made in the GOD class; Then God said, “Let us make human beings in our image, to be like us. (Genesis 1:26a) IN the beginning God created…. (Genesis 1:1) Just like God we were made to create. We were made for relationships with God and with each other; Vertical and Horizontal. And we were made with the ability to create. “For as he thinks in his heart, so is he.” (Proverbs 23:7) The key word in this verse is the word “thinks.” The word “thinks” is telling you that God is targeting your thought process – what you think about on a daily basis. He wants to be the FOREFRONT of our thoughts. Like a lover, God wants us to think about HIM often and DESIRE to spend time with HIM and FOR HIM. After the book of Malachi, God was silent for 400 years. It was not until John the Baptist making a way in the desert for THE ONE; Though his ministry follows mine, I’m not even worthy to be his slave and untie the straps of his sandal.” (John 1:27)
Conduit, there was a remnant back in the city of Jerusalem, the temple was being rebuilt, the city walls and gates were being rebuilt, God was calling His people home after the separation from His people and the punishment for their transgressions. We have the book of Nehemiah and Ezra talking about both of those rebuilding projects. People were physically coming back but they were farther away from God, then when they were scattered from Jerusalem and in captivity in Babylon. ‘These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. (Matthew 15:8) God does NOT WANT TO BE A CHECKED BOX! He doesn’t want us to do empty rituals, and traditional actions, He wants our hearts, and He wants our TIME. Go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy, and not sacrifice.’ (Matthew 9:13a) Like many people I know, God can get tired of empty relationships and broken commitments, unkept promises. Religion is man’s attempt to ‘Get to’ God. However, Christianity is God coming down to connect with man. God is looking for a connection, an intimate relationship of time and emotion spent together. If God has become silent in your life, maybe it is time to stop going through the motions and invest in a relationship with God the Father through His Son, Jesus. Many people will stop talking to others when they have been disappointed over and over. How is your relationship with our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ? Is He your PORTION? Is He your DESIRE? Do you crave connection and HIS PRESENCE, like you would a lover or a close friend? The Time is NOW to reconnect with the God of the universe through a personal relationship with His Son, our Savior and LORD- Jesus the Christ!