Look out. The day is coming that will burn like an oven. And the proud yes, all who do wickedly will be burned up. That not a root or Brandt will be left of them. That sounds awful.
Is there any way to avoid that great and terrible day? Well, yes. Malachi also proclaims, but to you who feel in my name, the Son of righteousness will arise with healing in his wings. I know which group I want to be a part of for true worshipers of Christ. The Book of Malachi is one of the most beloved books of the Old Testament.
Malachi is the last of the twelve minor prophets, and his book ends the Old Testament. Although most Bible scholars believe the Book of Esther comes after Malachi, chronologically, it’s believed that he wrote around 430 BC, after which there are about 400 years of silence when we don’t hear from another prophet until Christ is born and his apostles begin to write. Namalachi asks a lot of questions, getting people to think and reflect. So one way to study his book is to look at the questions and then work on discovering the answers. For example, he warns Israel that they’ve gone away from the Lord, who pleads, Return to me and I will return to you.
Then Malachi asks, how can we return? What are we doing wrong? To which a surprising answer is revealed you have robbed me in tithes and offerings. However, the Lord then provides an incredible promise bring all the tithes into the storehouse that there may be food in my house, and prove me now to see if I will not open the windows of heaven and pour out for you blessings that there will not be room enough to receive them. Now, back in Malachi’s time, one popular view was that the Earth was flat, covered by a huge dome resting on giant pillars, and that God sat in heaven above this pavilion watching the people of Earth.
Occasionally, he would open windows in the pavilion to let rain come down. So God asks us to prove or test Him by willingly paying tides and offerings. And if we do, he’ll open the windows of heaven and pour down blessings upon us so great we won’t have room to receive all of them, like a giant flood overflowing our homes, not with water, but blessings. Many of life’s most important lessons are learned through earning, saving, borrowing and spending money. But do we love money more than God?
Do we trust money more than God? Those are some tough questions we need to occasionally ask ourselves. Willingly paying tithes and offerings of our abundance from Him gives us the opportunity to sacrifice and put God first before ourselves. And when we do, he promises us everything he has. It’s a tangible way of proving our love to God, instead of imagining that everything revolves around us.
Now, when Christ visited the Nephi, he quoted two full chapters from malachi. In fact, one of very few passages to appear in all four standard works of scriptures is Malachi’s prophecy about Elijah the prophet coming before the great and dreadful day of the Lord to turn the hearts of the fathers to their children and the children to their fathers. The rabbinical tradition was that Elijah’s return would come on a passover. And on April 3, 1836, when Easter and Passover aligned, elijah did appear exactly as prophesied and did return these keys. So if we’ve ever done any temple or family history work for our ancestors, then we’ve been the recipient of the Lord’s promises through Malachi that saves the earth and all its inhabitants.
Yes, we are connected to all who came before and all who come after us with our life as one link in that great chain of humanity. One final promise from Malachi is that a book of remembrance will be written of those who fear the Lord and think on his name. God promises that they shall be mine in the day that I make up my jewels, my greatest possessions. Yes, he’ll purify us and will be his. The world can’t promise or Oliver anything even close to what only God can give us exaltation eternal happiness and joy.
And thus we end our study of the Old Testament. We did it. Stand up and do a victory dance and post it for us to see, or just pat yourself on the back. This year we’ve learned about the creation of the earth for God’s spirit children and about our first great parents, Adam and Eve. We saw how God loves all his children and blesses them as they choose Him, covenant with Him, and follow his commandments.
We discussed God’s incredible blessings of the Abrahamic covenant promised through Abraham, Isaac and Jacob to each of us. And we watched how the children of Israel were blessed, led, and protected when they chose and followed God. But when they rejected Him, they lost. Their promised blessings were scattered and destroyed. We also learned why it’s so important for us today to be a part of gathering Israel.
We learned about God’s great plan of happiness, and that when we make mistakes, which we all will, a savior is provided to redeem us. We covered many prophecies warning about our day and what will happen in our future, and even learned how to better understand the Psalms and Isaiah and other books that once seemed mind boggling. We discussed the major and minor prophets, and most importantly, we learned how the prophets stories and religious practices connect and point to Jesus Christ, who is Jehovah, the God of Israel and of the Old Testament, our Savior and Redeemer. As we end the Old Testament, many of God’s children are still looking for their great King and Messiah, while others are missing the mark with their focus on politics, wealth, and kooky manmade interpretations of God’s law. They need a savior to rescue them, but he won’t arrive for another 400 years.
Will they recognize and embrace him or reject him? That’s where we’ll start next year. It takes a lot to make these videos, so to keep line upon line free for everyone, consider donating the links in the description below. And thanks for watching. This episode is packed with info, so you might want to watch it again to make sure you didn’t miss anything, including the hilarious jokes.
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Windows of Heaven
Malachi | December 12-18
The Book of Malachi records some of the teachings and prophecies of the prophet Malachi. Some of the people during Malachi’s day were using sick or blemished animals as sacrifices. The Lord had commanded them to offer their best and purest offerings. Malachi warned the people of his day not to pollute their offerings.
Some of the people were being mean to their neighbors and families. Malachi warned the people to keep their covenants and the laws of God.
Some of the people had forgotten to pay their tithes and offerings. Malachi promised them if they paid their tithes and offerings, the windows of heaven would be opened and blessings would be poured out upon the people.
Some of the people thought that it was vain or worthless to serve God. Malachi taught the people that those who remembered God would be his jewels and he would spare them from the judgements that would come upon the proud and wicked.
Malachi prophesied of the return of Elijah the prophet who would “turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers.” Elijah did come and he restored the sealing keys to Joseph Smith in the Kirtland Temple in 1836.
Read and Discuss
“Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the Lord of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.”
- Why is it important to offer our best to the Lord?
- Why did Malachi remind the people to keep their covenants and the laws of God?
- What are we promised if we pay our tithes and offerings? What blessings has our family seen from paying tithing and offerings?
- Why did Elijah return in 1836? What does the sealing power do?
“The imagery of the ‘windows’ of heaven used by Malachi is most instructive. Windows allow natural light to enter into a building. In like manner, spiritual illumination and perspective are poured out through the windows of heaven and into our lives as we honor the law of tithing. I promise that as you and I observe and keep the law of tithing, indeed the windows of heaven will be opened and spiritual and temporal blessings will be poured out such that there shall not be room enough to receive them (see Malachi 3:10).” David A. Bednar
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View past lessons & resources on our website.
Create a paper chain with heart shaped links and write the names of your immediate and extended family members on each link. Talk about how the sealing power of the priesthood can link us together.
These delicious heart treats will remind you to turn your hearts to your ancestors. Share prepared treats or the recipe with grandparents or extended family.
The Hearts of the Children Children’s Songbook page 92