Chapter 9

Malachi 3:16-18; Revelation 22:16-17
"Then they that feared the Lord spake often one to another: and the Lord hearkened, and heard it, and'a book of remembrance was written before Him for them that feared the Lord, and that thought upon His name. And they shall be mine, saith the Lord of hosts, in that day when I make up My jewels; and I will spare them, as a man spareth his own son that serveth him. Then shall ye return, and discern between the righteous and the wicked, between him that serveth God and him that serveth him not." Malachi 3:16-1816Then they that feared the Lord spake often one to another: and the Lord hearkened, and heard it, and a book of remembrance was written before him for them that feared the Lord, and that thought upon his name. 17And they shall be mine, saith the Lord of hosts, in that day when I make up my jewels; and I will spare them, as a man spareth his own son that serveth him. 18Then shall ye return, and discern between the righteous and the wicked, between him that serveth God and him that serveth him not. (Malachi 3:16‑18)
"I Jesus have sent Mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches. I am the root and the offspring of David, and the bright and morning star. And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely." Revelation 22:16, 1716I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches. I am the root and the offspring of David, and the bright and morning star. 17And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely. (Revelation 22:16‑17)
Our verses from Malachi begin with the word "then." We need to emphasize this word to get the force of this passage as it connects with what has gone before. The day is coming when all will be manifested. Who is who, and what is what. "In that day" (Mal. 3:1717And they shall be mine, saith the Lord of hosts, in that day when I make up my jewels; and I will spare them, as a man spareth his own son that serveth him. (Malachi 3:17)) connects with chapter 4:1, "Behold the day cometh, that shall burn as an oven," etc.
Both the scriptures in Malachi and in Revelation speak of Christ's coming. In Malachi it is His coming to earth for His earthly people and in Revelation 22 it is His coming in reference to His heavenly people. "I Jesus have sent Mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches. I am the root and the offspring of David, and the bright and morning star. And the Spirit and the bride say, Come." (Fellowship, companionship, or responsive desire) "Surely I come quickly: Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus." (v. 20) How far do our hearts respond with heartfelt desire, and say, "Even so, come, Lord Jesus"?
In the history of Israel there were two revivals: one under Josiah, and the other under Hezekiah. The analogy to the Church is similar. There have been two revivals. The first was the bringing to light of the truth of the soul's relationship to God and justification by faith. The second was the recovery of the truth of the Church of God in its proper heavenly character, which was about 150 years ago, and was of a more corporate or collective nature.
Another analogy would present what was the state of the people in Malachi's day, the time following their captivity and bondage, brought on by the government of God. They should have been a testimony against idolatry, but instead, they were the most idolatrous people in existence.
Let us look at the present testimony of the professing Church. Read the second and third chapters of Revelation to see how the professing Church has sadly failed.
The people in the days of Malachi were characterized by ignorance of their true state. We find repeatedly these words, "And yet ye say," showing ignorance of their state. What is the last state of God's witness on the earth? It is found in the last epistle to the seventh Church, Laodicea: "Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing." They were boasting of their riches. Poor Church, there is One that pities you. "And knowest not that thou art . . . miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked: I counsel thee to buy of Me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed." It was not evil doctrine or bad conduct that was charged to Ephesus but, "Thou hast left thy first love," and to the last Church, Laodicea, ignorance of where she had fallen. They thought they were rich and needed nothing, yet in God's sight they were miserable, poor, blind and naked. "And anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see." The Word of God is that which opens the eyes of the soul to discern the mind of God.
The charge is lukewarmness, neither cold nor hot. May the Lord preserve us from that state. Lukewarmness in a Christian is a heart divided between Christ and the world. "I would thou wert cold or hot," and because she was neither, she was rejected. It is an important thing for us to remember that we belong to and are part of an unfaithful Church, taking it as a whole. Revelation 17 shows us the state of the professing Church when she joined hands with the world. What pomp and glory! But in chapter 18 we see what an end is hers. How sudden and complete was the overthrow! While that time of wailing and mourning is going on on earth, chapter 19 describes the joy in heaven over that overthrow.
It is instructive to see how both parts of God's Word, Malachi and Revelation, end in speaking of the coming of the Lord. The book of Malachi speaks of Christ's coming as the Sun of Righteousness, with healing in His wings, and it will be to put down His enemies also. But in Revelation 22:1717And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely. (Revelation 22:17), while the Lord comes to take His bride home to glory, it is to clear the scene righteously of all its defilement in swift destruction.
At the moment of the apostasy of the nation, described in Malachi 3, there were a few who "feared the Lord," and who "spake often one to another, and the Lord hearkened and heard it." Let us apply these things to ourselves. We are in danger of lukewarmness and apostasy. The Lord is seen in Laodicea on the outside of the door knocking on the heart's door of a lukewarm Church and, may we not say, of a lukewarm Christian. We wait for the Lord as He presents Himself in the last chapter of the Revelation, the Bright and Morning Star. The earth looks for Him as the Sun of Righteousness, but to us He will come as the Bright and Morning Star. "I Jesus have sent Mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches. I am the root and the offspring of David, and the bright and morning star."