Amplified Bible

Malachi 1

God’s Love for Jacob

1The [a]oracle (burdensome message) of the word of the Lord to Israel through [My messenger] Malachi.

“I have loved you,” says the Lord. [b]But you say, “How and in what way have You loved us?” “Was not Esau Jacob’s brother?” declares the Lord. “Yet I loved Jacob (Israel); but [in comparison with My love for Jacob] I have hated Esau (Edom), and I have made his mountains a wasteland, and have given his inheritance to the jackals of the wilderness.” Though [impoverished] Edom says, “We have been beaten down, but we will return and build up the ruins.” Thus says the Lord of hosts, “They may build, but I will tear down; and men will call them the Wicked Territory, the people against whom the Lord is indignant forever.” Your own eyes will see this and you will say, “The Lord is great and shall be magnified beyond the border of Israel!”

Sin of the Priests

“‘A son honors his father, and a servant his master. Then if I am a Father, where is My honor? And if I am a Master, where is the [reverent] fear and respect due Me?’ says the Lord of hosts to you, O priests, who despise My name. But you say, ‘How and in what way have we despised Your name?’ You are presenting defiled food upon My altar. But you say, ‘How have we defiled You?’ By thinking that the table of the Lord is contemptible and may be despised. When you [priests] present the [c]blind [animals] for sacrifice, is it not evil? And when you present the lame and the sick, is it not evil? Offer such a thing [as a blind or lame or sick animal] to your governor [as a gift or as payment for your taxes]. Would he be pleased with you? Or would he receive you graciously?” says the Lord of hosts. “But now will you not entreat God’s favor, that He may be gracious to us? With such an offering from your hand [as an imperfect animal for sacrifice], will He show favor to any of you?” says the Lord of hosts. 10 “Oh, that there were even one among you [whose duty it is to minister to Me] who would shut the gates, so that you would not kindle fire on My altar uselessly [with an empty, worthless pretense]! I am not pleased with you,” says the Lord of hosts, “nor will I accept an offering from your hand. 11 For [d]from the rising of the sun, even to its setting, My name shall be great among the nations. In every place incense is going to be offered to My name, and a grain offering that is pure; for My name shall be great among the nations,” says the Lord of hosts. 12 “But you [priests] profane it when you say, ‘The table of the Lord is defiled, and as for its fruit, its food is to be despised.’ 13 You also say, ‘How tiresome this is!’ And you disdainfully sniff at it,” says the Lord of hosts, “and you bring what was taken by robbery, and the lame or the sick [animals]; this you bring as an offering! Should I receive it with pleasure from your hand?” says the Lord. 14 “But cursed is the swindler who has a male in his flock and vows [to offer] it, but sacrifices to the Lord a blemished or diseased thing! For I am a great King,” says the Lord of hosts, “and My name is to be [reverently and greatly] feared among the nations.”

  1. Malachi 1:1 I.e. an urgent message the prophet is under compulsion to give.
  2. Malachi 1:2 The first in a series of sarcastic questions spread throughout this book beginning with “But you say.”
  3. Malachi 1:8 Only animals without defects or discernable flaws were to be offered as sacrifices.
  4. Malachi 1:11 I.e. around the world.

New International Version - UK

Malachi 1

1A prophecy: the word of the Lord to Israel through Malachi.[a]

Israel doubts God’s love

‘I have loved you,’ says the Lord.

‘But you ask, “How have you loved us?”

‘Was not Esau Jacob’s brother?’ declares the Lord. ‘Yet I have loved Jacob, but Esau I have hated, and I have turned his hill country into a wasteland and left his inheritance to the desert jackals.’

Edom may say, ‘Though we have been crushed, we will rebuild the ruins.’

But this is what the Lord Almighty says: ‘They may build, but I will demolish. They will be called the Wicked Land, a people always under the wrath of the Lord. You will see it with your own eyes and say, “Great is the Lord – even beyond the borders of Israel!”

Breaking covenant through blemished sacrifices

‘A son honours his father, and a slave his master. If I am a father, where is the honour due to me? If I am a master, where is the respect due to me?’ says the Lord Almighty.

‘It is you priests who show contempt for my name.

‘But you ask, “How have we shown contempt for your name?”

‘By offering defiled food on my altar.

‘But you ask, “How have we defiled you?”

‘By saying that the Lord’s table is contemptible. When you offer blind animals for sacrifice, is that not wrong? When you sacrifice lame or diseased animals, is that not wrong? Try offering them to your governor! Would he be pleased with you? Would he accept you?’ says the Lord Almighty.

‘Now plead with God to be gracious to us. With such offerings from your hands, will he accept you?’– says the Lord Almighty.

10 ‘Oh, that one of you would shut the temple doors, so that you would not light useless fires on my altar! I am not pleased with you,’ says the Lord Almighty, ‘and I will accept no offering from your hands. 11 My name will be great among the nations, from where the sun rises to where it sets. In every place incense and pure offerings will be brought to me, because my name will be great among the nations,’ says the Lord Almighty.

12 ‘But you profane it by saying, “The Lord’s table is defiled,” and, “Its food is contemptible.” 13 And you say, “What a burden!” and you sniff at it contemptuously,’ says the Lord Almighty.

‘When you bring injured, lame or diseased animals and offer them as sacrifices, should I accept them from your hands?’ says the Lord. 14 ‘Cursed is the cheat who has an acceptable male in his flock and vows to give it, but then sacrifices a blemished animal to the Lord. For I am a great king,’ says the Lord Almighty, ‘and my name is to be feared among the nations.

  1. Malachi 1:1 Malachi means my messenger.