Behold, I will send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me: and the LORD, whom you seek…
I. THROUGH HIS FIRST COMING. The prophet Malachi announces the Saviour as one who on His appearing will set on foot a great purifying among the people of Israel. Christ's forerunner, John the Baptist, of whom our text speaks, alluded to this. With the greatest earnestness he insisted on purification of heart. The forgiveness of sins, through faith in Christ, is the great purification, through which we are presented pure and holy before God. Thus has Christ laid in Himself a foundation for the purifying and sanctifying of our entire race.
II. THROUGH HIS DAILY, INVISIBLE COMING the Lord exercises His purifying office for our salvation. What Christ did in person at His first coming in the flesh He does now by His Holy Spirit. Even the gold that has been purified needs a continuous purifying. The stain of earthliness still clings too readily even to the pure heart, the flesh always lusts against the spirit; and sin, so long as we tarry in the body, is a foe always cleaving to and burdening us. Therefore does the Lord come even to believing souls with many a crucible of affliction, in which He again and again cleanses the gold from dross, that it may be fitted for His temple. But He often exercises His purifying office inwardly by a gracious coming to our hearts. He then comes with a specially blessed sense of His love, by which we are made ashamed and dissolve in love, such fire of love removing impurity.
III. AT HIS SECOND COMING IN GLORY the lord will destroy all anti-Christian ways, and all human pride that raises itself against Him. The day of His first coming the people might, well abide. He had veiled His glory under our weak flesh, Who would not rather in the day of grace be purified by the inner fire of Christ's and the Spirit's love and grace? To-day is the season of grace, to-morrow perhaps not.
(S. C. Kapff.)
Parallel VersesKJV: Behold, I will send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me: and the Lord, whom ye seek, shall suddenly come to his temple, even the messenger of the covenant, whom ye delight in: behold, he shall come, saith the LORD of hosts.
WEB: "Behold, I send my messenger, and he will prepare the way before me; and the Lord, whom you seek, will suddenly come to his temple; and the messenger of the covenant, whom you desire, behold, he comes!" says Yahweh of Armies.