1:1 What follows is divine revelation. 1 The word of the Lord came to Israel through Malachi: 2
1:2 “I have shown love to you,” says the Lord, but you say, “How have you shown love to us?”
“Esau was Jacob’s brother,” the Lord explains, “yet I chose Jacob 1:3 and rejected Esau. 3 I turned Esau’s 4 mountains into a deserted wasteland 5 and gave his territory 6 to the wild jackals.”
1:4 Edom 7 says, “Though we are devastated, we will once again build the ruined places.” So the Lord who rules over all 8 responds, “They indeed may build, but I will overthrow. They will be known as 9 the land of evil, the people with whom the Lord is permanently displeased. 1:5 Your eyes will see it, and then you will say, ‘May the Lord be magnified 10 even beyond the border of Israel!’”
1:6 “A son naturally honors his father and a slave respects 11 his master. If I am your 12 father, where is my honor? If I am your master, where is my respect? The Lord who rules over all asks you this, you priests who make light of my name! But you reply, ‘How have we made light of your name?’ 1:7 You are offering improper sacrifices on my altar, yet you ask, ‘How have we offended you?’ By treating the table 13 of the Lord as if it is of no importance! 1:8 For when you offer blind animals as a sacrifice, is that not wrong? And when you offer the lame and sick, 14 is that not wrong as well? Indeed, try offering them 15 to your governor! Will he be pleased with you 16 or show you favor?” asks the Lord who rules over all. 1:9 But now plead for God’s favor 17 that he might be gracious to us. 18 “With this kind of offering in your hands, how can he be pleased with you?” asks the Lord who rules over all.
1:10 “I wish that one of you would close the temple doors, 19 so that you no longer would light useless fires on my altar. I am not pleased with you,” says the Lord who rules over all, “and I will no longer accept an offering from you. 1:11 For from the east to the west my name will be great among the nations. Incense and pure offerings will be offered in my name everywhere, for my name will be great among the nations,” 20 says the Lord who rules over all. 1:12 “But you are profaning it by saying that the table of the Lord is common and its offerings 21 despicable. 1:13 You also say, ‘How tiresome it is.’ You turn up your nose at it,” says the Lord who rules over all, “and instead bring what is stolen, lame, or sick. You bring these things for an offering! Should I accept this from you?” 22 asks the Lord. 1:14 “There will be harsh condemnation for the hypocrite who has a valuable male animal in his flock but vows and sacrifices something inferior to the Lord. For I am a great king,” 23 says the Lord who rules over all, “and my name is awesome among the nations.”
1 tn Heb “The burden.” The Hebrew term III מַשָּׂא (massa’), usually translated “oracle” or “utterance” (BDB 672 s.v. מַשָּׂא), is a technical term in prophetic literature introducing a message from the
2 tn Heb “The word of the
3 tn Heb “and I loved Jacob, but Esau I hated.” The context indicates this is technical covenant vocabulary in which “love” and “hate” are synonymous with “choose” and “reject” respectively (see Deut 7:8; Jer 31:3; Hos 3:1; 9:15; 11:1).
4 tn Heb “his”; the referent (Esau) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
5 tn Heb “I set his mountains as a desolation.”
6 tn Or “inheritance” (so NIV, NLT).
7 sn Edom, a “brother” nation to Israel, became almost paradigmatic of hostility toward Israel and God (see Num 20:14-21; Deut 2:8; Jer 49:7-22; Ezek 25:12-14; Amos 1:11-12; Obad 10-12).
8 sn The epithet
9 tn Heb “and they will call them.” The third person plural subject is indefinite; one could translate, “and people will call them.”
10 tn Or “Great is the
11 tn The verb “respects” is not in the Hebrew text but is supplied in the translation for stylistic reasons. It is understood by ellipsis (see “honors” in the preceding line).
12 tn The pronoun “your” is supplied in the translation for clarification (also a second time before “master” later in this verse).
13 sn The word table, here a synonym for “altar,” has overtones of covenant imagery in which a feast shared by the covenant partners was an important element (see Exod 24:11). It also draws attention to the analogy of sitting down at a common meal with the governor (v. 8).
14 sn Offerings of animals that were lame or sick were strictly forbidden by the Mosaic law (see Deut 15:21).
15 tn Heb “it” (so NAB, NASB). Contemporary English more naturally uses a plural pronoun to agree with “the lame and sick” in the previous question (cf. NIV, NCV).
16 tc The LXX and Vulgate read “with it” (which in Hebrew would be הֲיִרְצֵהוּ, hayirtsehu, a reading followed by NAB) rather than “with you” of the MT (הֲיִרְצְךָ, hayirtsÿkha). The MT (followed here by most English versions) is to be preferred because of the parallel with the following phrase פָנֶיךָ (fanekha, “receive you,” which the present translation renders as “show you favor”).
17 tn Heb “seek the face of God.”
18 tn After the imperative, the prefixed verbal form with vav conjunction indicates purpose (cf. NASB, NRSV).
19 sn The rhetorical language suggests that as long as the priesthood and people remain disobedient, the temple doors may as well be closed because God is not “at home” to receive them or their worship there.
20 sn My name will be great among the nations. In what is clearly a strongly ironic shift of thought, the
21 tn Heb “fruit.” The following word “food” in the Hebrew text (אָכְלוֹ, ’okhlo) appears to be an explanatory gloss to clarify the meaning of the rare word נִיב (niv, “fruit”; see Isa 57:19 Qere; נוֹב, nov, “fruit,” in Kethib). Cf. ASV “the fruit thereof, even its food.” In this cultic context the reference is to the offerings on the altar.
22 tn Heb “from your hand,” a metonymy of part (the hand) for whole (the person).
23 sn The epithet great king was used to describe the Hittite rulers on their covenant documents and so, in the covenant ideology of Malachi, is an apt description of the