A Pure People     Mal. 3:1-7, 16-18; 4:1-2 HCSB     May 31, 2015

 

Introduction

If purity comes to us it will have to be because of the work of Jesus and our yielding to Him for salvation.

Of course we can and should allow Him through the Holy Spirit to perform this work of purity in our desires and activities.  We should work with Him to see we are open to that possibility as we know God desires A Pure People.                                                                         

 

1.   A Pure People and God’s . . Plan.   3:1-5

A.   A Plan to Send the . . Messenger.   1:a

1 "See, I am going to send My messenger, and he will clear the way before Me.

 

B.    A Plan to Send the . . Messiah.   1:b-2

Then the Lord you seek will suddenly  come to His temple, the Messenger of the covenant you desire—see,

He is coming," says the Lord of Hosts.

2 But who can endure the day of His coming? And who will be able to stand when He appears? For He will

be like a refiner's fire and like cleansing lye.                                    

1.    A . . Surprising Messiah.  v 1 b

Then the Lord you seek will suddenly come to His temple, . . . “      —see,

“. . . He is coming," says the Lord of Hosts.

 

2.    A . . Scriptural Messiah.  v 1 c

“. . .  the Messenger of the covenant you desire . . .”

 

3.    A . . Sure Messiah.  v 1 d

“. . . —see, He is coming," says the Lord of Hosts.”

 

4.    A . . Special Messiah.  v 2

2 But who can endure the day of His coming? And who will be able to stand when He appears? For He will

be like a refiner's fire and like cleansing lye.

 

I think it is foundational to the Christian life in Christ to know He has a plan and in His time it will be completed.  God had a plan to send a Messenger before He sent the Messiah.  Most commentators will agree the messenger was John the Baptist and the New Testament clearly confirms that.  Then the Messiah will come; this probably has reference to Jesus’ first and second coming.  We know definitely about the Messiah’s first coming but the exact time of His second coming is still not definitely known.  Many believe it could come at anytime.

The fact that Jesus is coming a second time as reported in Scripture is settled and sure because the scripture tell us that is true. 

 

2.   A Pure People and God’s . . Purifying.   3:3-5

A.   Purifying . . Received.   3:3-4

3 He will be like a refiner and purifier of silver; He will purify the sons of Levi and refine them like

gold and silver. Then they will present offerings to the Lord in righteousness.

4 And the offerings of Judah and Jerusalem will please the Lord as in days of old and years gone by.

 

B.    Purifying . . Refused.   3:5

5 "I will come to you in judgment, and I will be ready to witness against sorcerers and adulterers; against

those who swear falsely; against those who oppress the widow and the fatherless, and cheat the wage

earner; and against those who deny justice to the foreigner. They do not fear Me," says the Lord of Hosts.

 


How do people become pure?  It can only happen through the sacrifice provided by Christ.  His sinless blood covers our sin and makes us pure in God sight.  All of our attempts and plans to make one pure at best only boils down to what is called reform that may bring an improvement but not purity.   The list of sinners who do not receive purification can easily be identified and agreed upon as those who linger in their sin and refuse the work of God in their life and have no fear of Him.  It is interesting how the Book of Provers says, “the beginning of wisdom is the fear of the Lord.”

 

3.   A Pure People and God’s Unchanging Character . . Preparing for His People. 3:16-18

A.   Preparing for Those with High . . Regard for His Name.   .   3:16

16 At that time those who feared the Lord spoke to one another. The Lord took notice and listened. So a book of  remembrance was written before Him for those who feared Yahweh and had high regard for His name.

 

B.    Preparing for Those Who are . . Righteous and Serving God.      3:17-18

17 "They will be Mine," says the Lord of Hosts, "a special possession on the day I am preparing. I will have compassion on them as a man has compassion on his son who serves him. 18 So you will again see the difference between the righteous and the wicked, between one who serves God and one who does not serve Him.

 

If I had been living in the time of Malachi I would want to be listed with those who feared the Lord and have a high regard for His name.   I would also want to be counted with those the Lord calls His own.  I know I

am included in that kind of crowd today because of what Jesus has done in my live and the pleasure I have in serving Him.  The Holy Spirt gives me confidence and the scriptures tell me my salvation is sealed in Jesus.

 

4.   A Pure People and God Giving Hope to the Faithful . . Possessing His People.  4:1-2

A.   Possessing His People and . . Rejecting the Wicked.    4:1

1  "For indeed, the day is coming, burning like a furnace, when all the arrogant and everyone who commits wickedness will become stubble. The coming day will consume them," says the Lord of Hosts, "not leaving them root or  branches.

 

B.    Possessing His People and . . Rejoicing in His Own.    4:2

2 But for you who fear My name, the sun of righteousness will rise with healing in its wings, and you will go out and playfully jump like calves from the stall.  HCSB

 

The text indicates God possesses His own so we can know we belong to Him.  Of course the New Testament makes that even clearer.  In contrast the arrogant who have a life-style of wickedness compared to those who fear the Lord (which means a holy reverence) will go out like playful calves who are let out of their stall. They are A Pure People.  Amen?  Amen!