Malachi is a really fascinating book to me because it is God's final words to Israel before 400 years of silence. What was God's frustration with His people this time? One thing was their offerings to him at the temple. Apparently the Israelites began offering God animals that were lame or sick rather than animals that were healthy. Why? Probably because they were trying to guard their financial state. Ironically, what they did without realizing it was to proclaim that God wasn't going to care for their needs. They were taking their physical needs into their own hands rather than trusting their heavenly Father who had so faithfully brought their ancestors out of slavery, through a desert, and into the Promised Land. Do you trust God with your best, or are you giving Him the leftovers? As far as I'm concerned this applies to more than just money (or goats, sheep, and other livestock as the case would have been). What about your time? What about your energy? Do you generously give it to your heavenly Father? He challenged the Israelites: just try Me, and see if I open up the storehouses of heaven and rain down blessings on you… just try Me. Wow! What a challenge! Is it one that you're willing to take? He allowed Israel to think about that for 400 years! Maybe it's a message worth pondering for myself.
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Seth is a pastor, author, and speaker who lives in Batesville, Indiana. He is married to Kari, and they have two daughters, Madelyn and Noelle.