Come, Follow Me with Taylor Halverson (Doctrine and Covenants 2; JS-H 1:27–65, Jan 11–17) – powered by Happy Scribe
Why does God quote the Old Testament Prophet Malachi to begin the restoration? I suggest one possibility is that God has tried to remind us of one of the key characteristics of who he is. He is a god of fire. If we remember at the dedication of the Kirtland Temple, one of the great songs that they sing was The Spirit of God Like a Fire is Burning. And how many of us have known the pure truth of God’s love and of his word by the burning sensation that we have in our souls?
Or consider that when God revealed himself to Moses at Mount Sinai, it was a burning bush, or that he led the Israelites with a pillar of fire. Or remember the prophet Lihi, who also saw a pillar of fire on Iraq, or other examples that we can find in the Scriptures of God’s fire, protecting and preserving his people. Now, what’s interesting is indeed in Chapter two, Malakai, Chapter four is quoted. And even though verse one for Malachi is not quoted, I’d like to share that verse.
It says, For Behold the day cometh that shall burn as an oven and all the proud Yohane, all the dew wickedly shall be stubble in the day that cometh shall burn them up, see if the Lord of Hosts shall leave them neither root nor branch. And then later in Malachi, it says God will send Elijah to repair the people, the hearts of the children’s hearts of the fathers, so that the world will not be destroyed and wasted at the coming of God.
What is interesting here is the fire symbolism we have in Malakai.
In fact, the phrase that shall burn is an oven. The underlying Hebrew word is the same word that’s used to describe God back in Genesis Chapter fifteen when he is ratifying the Abrahamic Covenant on behalf of Abraham God himself as a flaming torch pass through a set of cut up animals as a symbol that God was under covenant obligation to fulfill the promises that he made to Abraham and all of Abraham’s descendants in Genesis Chapter twelve one through three. So this is now brought full circle that the first covenant we get in Genesis Chapter twelve one through three.
The Abrahamic promises that God himself has put himself under covenants obligation to fulfill is now being shown again in Malachai and at the beginning of the restoration that God is a God of fire and of burning and of confirmation. He will do these things because he has promised to Abraham and all of Abraham’s posterity to bring forth the words of truth that will burn bright in our hearts and keep us on the covenant path that we can be brought back into his presence in the arms of his love and the arms of his mercy.
So why is it significant? The beginning of the restoration DNC to right there to begin the restoration is evidence that God loves us, that he has a plan, he has a purpose. And if you stay firm in his love, you will feel the burning sensations confirming to you that you are his.