Malachi 2:1-6

Malachi 2:1 (KJB)

And now, O ye priests, this commandment is for you.


Now the Lord specifically addresses the priests who should have known better than to go along with the people who brought in blemished sacrifices and treated the temple as profane.  The priests were brought up learning the law and spent hours studying the law so they should have rejected any blemished sacrifice.


Malachi 2:2 (KJB)

If ye will not hear, and if ye will not lay it to heart, to give glory unto my name, saith the LORD of hosts, I will even send a curse upon you, and I will curse your blessings: yea, I have cursed them already, because ye do not lay it to heart.


Here the priests are being reprimanded that if they do not hear and that word hear does not only mean to hear physically but to hear with understanding and then take what they have understood to heart, that is, to consider and contemplate what God is telling them.  They are to give glory to God’s name and instead of the lightheartedness in which they were approaching the temple and worship, they were now to give substance to their worship of God.  If they do not, then in addition to the fact that God has already cursed their blessings, they can expect future curses on their blessings until they completely rectify their way of approaching God and worship in the temple.  Not only would their blessings be cursed but God promises to put a curse upon the priests themselves because they should be the ones who know better.  James 3:1 (KJV) My brethren, be not many masters, knowing that we shall receive the greater condemnation.  James gives the principle that those who are teachers will receive the greater condemnation when we sin against the Lord because the teacher should know better plus when they go against what they have studied in the scriptures, it makes them a hypocrite and causes the unbelievers to mock Christianity.  This is what would happen to the priests, they would receive the greater condemnation because they should be guides to the people and not complicit in their schemes.


Malachi 2:3 (KJB)

Behold, I will corrupt your seed, and spread dung upon your faces, even the dung of your solemn feasts; and one shall take you away with it.


Since lineage of families was very important to the Israelites, here God is warning them that the curse will, include the decimation of their seed, that is, they will either not be able to have children to keep their family line going or they will have seed but the children will turn out bad and will not be able to be priests.  Then God tells them something which would be loathsome to them that he is going to spread dung upon their faces.  Exodus 29:14 (KJV) But the flesh of the bullock, and his skin, and his dung, shalt thou burn with fire without the camp: it is a sin offering. Dung was supposed to be taken outside the camp and burnt but here God is going to humiliate the false priests by spreading it on their faces.  In other words, God is showing the greatest contempt for these priests for allowing Israel to go this far in sinning.  Then God names the solemn feasts and they will be as loathsome to him as dung instead of them having a meaning of solemnity and worship, they will be seen as profane in the sight of God.  This is also a warning to the churches to make sure that God does not look upon their services and teachings as dung but instead must be in the truth.  Then God promises that the false priests will be taken away as unclean as the dung from any type of temple service.  They would basically be discarded as the refuse from the sacrifices were.  When a sacrifice was cut open, the dung would become apparent but would have to be removed and burned outside the camp and since the priests loved to compromise, they would be taken out with the dung to a place of uncleanness.  The priesthood was not a permanent thing but was only applicable till Christ died on Calvary and then the priesthood was no longer legitimate.


Malachi 2:4 (KJB)

And ye shall know that I have sent this commandment unto you, that my covenant might be with Levi, saith the LORD of hosts.


First of all the apostate priests will know that it is the LORD that is sending them this commandment.  God is reminding them that his covenant is with the house of Levi which was perpetuated through Phinehas the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron.  Numbers 25:11-13 (KJV)   Phinehas, the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron the priest, hath turned my wrath away from the children of Israel, while he was zealous for my sake among them, that I consumed not the children of Israel in my jealousy.  {12} Wherefore say, Behold, I give unto him my covenant of peace:  {13} And he shall have it, and his seed after him, even the covenant of an everlasting priesthood; because he was zealous for his God, and made an atonement for the children of Israel.  What had happened during the time of Malachi was that the priests were being taken from other tribes and that would have polluted the pure line of the Aaronic Priesthood.  God gave the duties of the tabernacle and temple to the tribe of Levi and no one else.  God will begin to purify the priestly line once again by only allowing those whom he has commissioned for that duty.


Malachi 2:5 (KJB)

My covenant was with him of life and peace; and I gave them to him for the fear wherewith he feared me, and was afraid before my name.


The covenant goes back to the one I posted in the previous verse.  When one had life and peace it was a promise of long life and prosperity under the terms of the covenant.  He received both of these because he feared the LORD and basically trembled before the name of the LORD.  False and apostate priests had no fear of God and that was what was happening here in Malachi’s time.  This is why the priests did not care what type of blemished sacrifices were brought to the temple because they did not fear God but did what they wanted but now God is going to reject them and make sure that only the Levitical priests perform the duties of the temple.   In Leviticus 10:1-2, Nadab and Abihu had offered strange fire before the Lord and defiled the service of the Tabernacle and this resulted in God striking them dead.  This was because they had no fear of God. Psalm 36:1 (KJV) The transgression of the wicked saith within my heart, that there is no fear of God before his eyes.  The priests in Malachi’s time also had lost the fear of God since they gave no mind to what they were doing.


Malachi 2:6 (KJB)

The law of truth was in his mouth, and iniquity was not found in his lips: he walked with me in peace and equity, and did turn many away from iniquity.


This is speaking of Phinehas but would apply to the entire line of true priests that would bring the truth of the law and would not withhold any of the teachings in fear of someone being offended.  They were not profane in their speech but it was always seasoned with goodness which means they did not use offensive speech but used proper speech to deal with the people.  The priests not only taught the truth of the law but because of their salvation they were at peace with God because only a saved person has peace with God.  Romans 5:1 (KJV) Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:  They were not only at peace with God but they walked in equity that is they walked in true justice and uprightness.  If someone violated the law, these priests told the violator of the penalty they had to pay for their infraction of the law.  Their purity in performing the duties had caused many people to turn from iniquity and sin but in the time of Malachi the priests were causing the people to sin against the LORD by not performing their duties according to the Law.  This is also a warning to many churches today as their actions and associations are causing Christians to walk astray and that is why the churches are in such poor conditions.