October 20, 2021 – Wednesday
Malachi 2:9 NIV
9 “So I have caused you to be despised and humiliated before all the people, because you have not followed my ways but have shown partiality in matters of the law.”
The above are harsh words coming from God through Malachi. Who is He talking about and why? He is talking about the priests of Israel and the why is covered in the latter part of the verse. First of all, the priests have not followed His ways and have shown partiality in matters of the law. One point before going further, the word translated as despised is also translated as contemptible in chapter 1:7 and 12.
A bit of contest will provide much more on the why within the prior two verses (7-8), For the lips of a priest ought to preserve knowledge, because he is the messenger of the Lord Almighty and people seek instruction from his mouth. But you have turned from the way and by your teaching have caused many to stumble; you have violated the covenant with Levi,” says the Lord Almighty.
With this in mind, His words no longer seem so harsh.
And it is worse than that. In chapter within verse 6 God says, It is you priests who show contempt for my name. Then He answers the question on how they have shown contempt in verse 8, When you offer blind animals for sacrifice, is that not wrong? When you sacrifice lame or diseased animals, is that not wrong? And then in verses 13 and 14, When you bring injured, lame or diseased animals and offer them as sacrifices, should I accept them from your hands? Cursed is the cheat who has an acceptable male in his flock and vows to give it, but then sacrifices a blemished animal to the Lord.
But what does that have to do with us you may ask, after all we are not priests? Or are we? We are. Does that surprise you? Here is the evidence from 1 Peter 2:9, But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. Clearly all believers in Christ are priests and are likewise called to live lives of obedience that honor God.
This is not to say believers do not sin or fail from time to time, but we are not to choose to live a life of sin dishonoring God as the priests in Malachi were accused of doing. They were only going through the motions, making no real effort to honor God. There are numerous examples in the Old Testament of such behavior and God always reacted with disgust and anger at such behavior that essentially mocks God and those who do their best to honor Him with their lives.
Bottom Line: Let us take Peter’s words seriously and do our best to honor God with our lives day in and day out.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, Please bless all of our efforts to honor You. Let our efforts be sincere and from the deepest recesses of our hearts. – In Jesus’ Name. Amen.
Riley D. Driver – Pastor Calvary Chapel of Dayton in Beavercreek