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New American Bible

2002 11 11
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Chapter 3


1 Lo, I am sending my messenger to prepare the way before me; And suddenly there will come to the temple the LORD whom you seek, And the messenger of the covenant whom you desire. Yes, he is coming, says the LORD of hosts.


But who will endure the day of his coming? And who can stand when he appears? For he is like the refiner's fire, or like the fuller's lye.


He will sit refining and purifying (silver), and he will purify the sons of Levi, Refining them like gold or like silver that they may offer due sacrifice to the LORD.


Then the sacrifice of Judah and Jerusalem will please the LORD, as in days of old, as in years gone by.


I will draw near to you for judgment, and I will be swift to bear witness Against the sorcerers, adulterers, and perjurers, those who defraud the hired man of his wages, Against those who defraud widows and orphans; those who turn aside the stranger, and those who do not fear me, says the LORD of hosts.


2 Surely I, the LORD, do not change, nor do you cease to be sons of Jacob.


Since the days of your fathers you have turned aside from my statutes, and have not kept them. Return to me, and I will return to you, says the LORD of hosts. Yet you say, "How must we return?"


Dare a man rob God? Yet you are robbing me! And you say, "How do we rob you?" In tithes and in offerings!


You are indeed accursed, for you, the whole nation, rob me.


3 Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, That there may be food in my house, and try me in this, says the LORD of hosts: Shall I not open for you the floodgates of heaven, to pour down blessing upon you without measure?


For your sake I will forbid the locust to destroy your crops; And the vine in the field will not be barren, says the LORD of hosts.


Then all nations will call you blessed, for you will be a delightful land, says the LORD of hosts.


You have defied me in word, says the LORD, yet you ask, "What have we spoken against you?"


You have said, "It is vain to serve God, and what do we profit by keeping his command, And going about in penitential dress in awe of the LORD of hosts?


Rather must we call the proud blessed; for indeed evildoers prosper, and even tempt God with impunity."


4 Then they who fear the LORD spoke with one another, and the LORD listened attentively; And a record book was written before him of those who fear the LORD and trust in his name.


And they shall be mine, says the LORD of hosts, my own special possession, on the day I take action. And I will have compassion on them, as a man has compassion on his son who serves him.


Then you will again see the distinction between the just and the wicked; Between him who serves God, and him who does not serve him.


For lo, the day is coming, blazing like an oven, when all the proud and all evildoers will be stubble, And the day that is coming will set them on fire, leaving them neither root nor branch, says the LORD of hosts.


But for you who fear my name, there will arise the sun of justice with its healing rays; And you will gambol like calves out of the stall


1) and tread down the wicked; They will become ashes under the soles of your feet, on the day I take action, says the LORD of hosts.


Remember the law of Moses my servant, which I enjoined him on Horeb, The statutes and ordinances for all Israel.


5 Lo, I will send you Elijah, the prophet, Before the day of the LORD comes, the great and terrible day,


6 To turn the hearts of the fathers to their children, and the hearts of the children to their fathers, Lest I come and strike the land with doom. Lo, I will send you Elijah, the prophet, Before the day of the LORD comes, the great and terrible day.


1 [1] My messenger . . . before me: in Malachi 3:23 this messenger is called Elijah. In Matthew 11:10 these words are quoted by Christ as referring to John the Baptizer, who prepared the way for the coming of the Savior; cf Matthew 3:1-3, 11-12; 17:11-13; Mark 1:2-8; Luke 3:2-18; John 1:31-34.

2 [6-7] God is faithful to his promises. He will not abandon the Israelites, who are still his people.

3 [10] Storehouse: the temple treasury.

4 [16] Record book: see note on Exodus 32:32.

5 [23] (23)Elijah: described in 2 Kings 2:11 as taken heavenward in a fiery chariot. Here his return to earth seems to be foretold. Jewish tradition has interpreted this literally; Christ declared it to be fulfilled in the coming of John the Baptizer ( Matthew 17:10-13).

6 [24] (24)The words in fine print, a repetition of Malachi 3:23 have been added by the scribes so that the collection of the twelve minor prophets will not end with the threat of doom.

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