An Alphabetical Analysis
Volume 9 - Prophetic Truth - Page 12 of 223
forges a link between the close of the Old Testament and the opening of the
The first great complaint against Israel is their utter contempt for
the sacred service of the temple.  'Ye have snuffed at it', 'and ye brought
that which was torn, and the lame, and the sick: thus ye brought an offering:
should I accept this of your hand? saith the Lord' (1:13).  The utter failure
of Israel causes the prophet to look further afield and he exclaims with
prophetic insight:
'From the rising of the sun even unto the going down of the same My
Name shall be great among the Gentiles; and in every place incense
shall be offered unto My name, and a pure offering: for My name shall
be great among the heathen, saith the Lord of hosts' (1:11).
In the prophetic section (chapters 3 and 4) there is a reversal of
this, consequent upon change of heart, for 'All nations shall (then) call you
blessed: for ye shall be a delightsome land, saith the Lord of hosts' (3:10 -
12).  This reversal is more clearly seen when we know that the Hebrew word
chephets 'delightsome' has already occurred with a negative in the first
chapter.  'I have no pleasure in you' (1:10).  Again, the reference to 'the
rising of the sun' in the eleventh verse of the first chapter is associated
with Gentile acceptance, but the rising of the Sun of righteousness with
healing in His wings, speaks of the day of Israel's restoration to Divine
favour (4:2).
There is moreover, a very great emphasis placed in this prophecy on
'the name' of the Lord.  Following the figure of the son honouring his
father, and of the servant honouring his master, the Lord addresses the
priests 'that despise My Name' (1:6), to which they reply 'Wherein have we
despised Thy Name?'  This is followed by four references to the phrase 'My
Name' among the Gentiles (1:11 -14).  Again turning to the priests, when the
prophet says, 'And now, O ye priests, this commandment is for you' (2:1) we
have two more references to 'the Name':
'If ye will not ... give glory unto My Name' (2:2).
'The fear wherewith he feared Me, and was afraid before My Name' (2:5).
After this the remnant of the nation comes before us, 'Then they that
feared the Lord ... that thought upon His Name' (3:16), the last occurrence
of 'the Name' being in Malachi 4:2, where the rising sun with healing in His
wings is for those 'that fear My Name', saith the Lord.
The word 'contemptible' which is found in Malachi 1:7,12 is found again
in the ninth verse of the second chapter.  Israel's priests had made 'the
table of the Lord' contemptible.  'I also made you contemptible' is the
inevitable consequence.
There is a 'curse' in Malachi 1:14; 2:2; 3:9 and in 4:6.
Blessing also
is pronounced in 3:10 and 12.
Something of the sequence of thought may be realized if we set out the
references to 'the Name' as follows: