Malachi 3:5, 6
And I will come near to you to judgment; and I will be a swift witness against the sorcerers, and against the adulterers…
And I will come near to you to judgment. From this passage we are reminded -
I. THAT SINNERS EXIST IN THIS WORLD IN GREAT VARIETY. Here are "sorcerers," "adulterers," "false swearers," and heartless oppressors. The first were very general in Judaea. "There was," says Lightfoot, "hardly any people in the whole world that more used or were more fond of amulets, charms, mutterings, exorcisms, and all kinds of enchantments. The elder who was chosen to sit in the Sauhedrin was obliged to be skilled in the arts of astrologers, jugglers, and sorcerers, that he might be able to judge these who were accused of practising such arts." Perhaps we have few, if any, professional sorcerers in England; but what is as bad, if not worse, practical deceivers abound. Adulterers, too, and liars, and ruthless oppressors, where are they not? Sinners exist, alas! in a great variety of type and in a great variety of degree. "There is not a just man on earth that doeth good and sinneth not."
II. THAT SINNERS OF EVERY VARIETY ARE EXPOSED TO A DIVINE JUDGMENT. "I will come near to you to judgment; and I will be a swift Witness." I "whom ye challenged, saying, 'Where is the God of judgment?' 'I will be a swift Witness.' I whom ye think far off, and to be slow in judgment, am near, and will Come as a 'swift Witness,' not only as a Judge, but as an Eyewitness; for mine eyes see every sin, though ye think I take no heed. Earthly judges need witnesses to enable them to decide aright. I alone need none. Sinners will be awfully undeceived who flatter themselves, 'God will never see it. How doth God know? and is there knowledge in the Most High?' (Psalm 10:11; Psalm 73:11; Psalm 94:7)" (Fausset).
III. THAT SINNERS ARE PRESERVED ON ACCOUNT OF THE IMMUTABILITY OF GOD. "I am the Lord, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed." Ewald translates this verse," For I, Jehovah, have not changed; but ye sons of Jacob, have not ye altered?' I have not altered towards you, but you have altered towards me. Because I have not changed you are preserved. I determined to Continue you a distinct people on the earth, and therefore, notwithstanding all your murmurings and transgressions, you are not "consumed." God's immutability explains the continuation of sinners on the earth. He is essentially Love, and a change in him would be a change from love, and a change from love would be the ruin of sinners. When he says, "I change not," it means, "I am as full of love as ever." "As I live, saith the Lord God, I have no pleasure in the death of a sinner." - D.T.
Parallel VersesKJV: And I will come near to you to judgment; and I will be a swift witness against the sorcerers, and against the adulterers, and against false swearers, and against those that oppress the hireling in his wages, the widow, and the fatherless, and that turn aside the stranger from his right, and fear not me, saith the LORD of hosts.
WEB: I will come near to you to judgment; and I will be a swift witness against the sorcerers, and against the adulterers, and against the perjurers, and against those who oppress the hireling in his wages, the widow, and the fatherless, and who deprive the foreigner of justice, and don't fear me," says Yahweh of Armies.