This past weekend we began our study in the book of Malachi. If you’ve read through the book (if you haven’t done so yet, I’d encourage you to do so) it may seem harsh. But that’s why these first few verses were so important, to emphasize the fact that God’s love for His people is what drives all He will say to them throughout the book.
God’s Love Professed: v.2 This is an important point to understand, that at the outset of the book God professes His love to a faithless people. There was nothing, let me be clear about this, NOTHING that Israel had done to earn His love. Yet, God was professing His faithful, unconditional love to them. It’s important for us to remember that God doesn’t love us because of what we’ve done. In fact, I’d suggest that He loves us in spite of us. As we move through Malachi, remember the point of the book is God’s persistent love for a rebellious people. 2,400 years ago it was Israel, today it’s you and I.
God’s Love Proved: v.2-4 You’d think a profession of God’s love to His people would be enough, but Israel had the audacity to make Him prove it. So He did. In what can be a real snare for some (v.2-3), God explained that His love to Israel is proved in the fact that He chose Israel. He then points out that in His choosing of Israel, He rejected Esau. At casual glance it can seem harsh, but it really isn’t and we do the same. You see, this is covenant language. When I married Becky, we made a covenant with each other. One aspect of that covenant is a rejection of all others as a potential spouse. This is what God did with Israel. He further proves His love by pointing out that while Esau/Edom got exactly what they deserved, Israel has not received what they rightly deserved. Consider in your life, what are ways that God has proved His love for you in your life?
God’s Love Proclaimed: v.5 The final item we saw was God’s love that is both professed and proved leads to His people proclaiming His greatness. When you think about it, it’s difficult to not arrive at this point. How are you proclaiming God’s love in your life this week?