Malachi 2* The priests reproved for neglecting their covenant. (1-9) Thepeople reproved for their evil practices. (10-17)1-9 What is here said of the covenant of priesthood, is true ofthe covenant of grace made with all believers, as spiritualpriests. It is a covenant of life and peace; it assures allbelievers of all happiness, both in this world and in that tocome. It is an honour to God's servants to be employed as hismessengers. The priest's lips should not keep knowledge from hispeople, but keep it for them. The people are all concerned toknow the will of the Lord. We must not only consult the writtenword, but desire instruction and advice from God's messengers,in the affairs of our souls. Ministers must exert themselves tothe utmost for the conversion of sinners; and even among thosecalled Israelites, there are many to be turned from iniquity.Those ministers, and those only, are likely to turn men fromsin, who preach sound doctrine, and live holy lives according tothe Scripture. Many departed from this way; thus they misled thepeople. Such as walk with God in peace and righteousness, andturn others from sin, honour God; he will honour them, whilethose who despise him shall be lightly esteemed. 10-17 Corrupt practices are the fruit of corrupt principles;and he who is false to his God, will not be true to his fellowmortals. In contempt of the marriage covenant, which Godinstituted, the Jews put away the wives they had of their ownnation, probably to make room for strange wives. They made theirlives bitter to them; yet, in the sight of others, they pretendto be tender of them. Consider she is thy wife; thy own; thenearest relation thou hast in the world. The wife is to belooked on, not as a servant, but as a companion to the husband.There is an oath of God between them, which is not to be trifledwith. Man and wife should continue to their lives' end, in holylove and peace. Did not God make one, one Eve for one Adam? YetGod could have made another Eve. Wherefore did he make but onewoman for one man? It was that the children might be made a seedto serve him. Husbands and wives must live in the fear of God,that their seed may be a godly seed. The God of Israel saiththat he hateth putting away. Those who would be kept from sin,must take heed to their spirits, for there all sin begins. Menwill find that their wrong conduct in their families springsfrom selfishness, which disregards the welfare and happiness ofothers, when opposed to their own passions and fancies. It iswearisome to God to hear people justify themselves in wickedpractices. Those who think God can be a friend to sin, affronthim, and deceive themselves. The scoffers said, Where is the Godof judgement? but the day of the Lord will come.
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