In this sermon, we explore the 6th and final dispute between God and the people of Israel. Previously, God was pouring out His heart in an appeal to the people to “test me in this” so that He would pour our His blessing on them, and to “return to me, and I will return to you.” But how will the people respond?
In this passage from Malachi 3:13–18, the people respond in two very different ways. One group turned to one another and said it’s time we take God at His word, and repent and return to Him. The other groups turned to one another and said, what’s the point? These people doubled down on their faltering faith.
This passage serves as a reminder to Israel and us that God hears our words, God discerns our hearts, and God remembers our deeds.
1) God Hears Our Words
When it comes to God, nothing escapes His notice.
We need a God of final justice far more than we realize. First, because the justice of God gives life meaning. And second, because the final justice of God is the grounds for non-violence.
2) God Discerns our Hearts
When it comes to God, true motives are laid bare.
God discerns the hearts of those filled with resentful obligation, and the hearts of those who fear and esteem His name.
3) God Remembers Our Deeds
When it comes to God, all shall be brought to account.
Takeaway: History has an arc, and it bends towards Jesus.
One day, we will stand before Him and the books will be open. In that day, will you find your name written in the Book of Life?