Come, Observe Me for Sunday Faculty: “I Have Cherished You, Saith the Lord”, Malachi

After struggling generations of captivity, the Lord, via the prophet Malachi, advised his folks “I’ve cherished you” (Malachi 1:2). This may need appeared onerous for them to consider in any case that they had been via, and so they ask, “Whereby hast thou cherished us?”  Some folks discover it onerous to consider that the story of the Previous Testomony can be a story of affection for his covenant folks. There are numerous examples of rebel and onerous hearts among the many chosen ones. But all through all of that, God’s hesed, or covenant love was at all times freely supplied. He was at all times desperate to have them return to the covenant relationship once they repented. God’s hesed was affected person and enduring.

“As Many as I Love, I Rebuke and Chasten” (Revelation 3:19) 

The very expertise of putting up with God’s chastening has the power to refines us and put together us for larger non secular privileges. Our Father in Heaven is a God of excessive expectations. As George McDonald as soon as stated, “You thought you had been going to be made into an honest little cottage: however He’s constructing a palace. He intends to come back and reside in it himself. (Quoted by C.S. Lewis in Mere Christianity)” This may increasingly require knocking out some partitions, and digging deep so new plumbing could be put in. It could appear painful, however identical to the operation the physician is performing goes to heal you, generally some slicing is important.

It’s not sufficient for us to simply undergo the motions. As Elder Dallin H. Oaks defined, “The commandments, ordinances, and covenants of the gospel usually are not an inventory of deposits required to be made in some heavenly checking account. The gospel of Jesus Christ is a plan to point out us how you can grow to be what our Heavenly father needs us to grow to be.”[i]  Elder D. Todd Christopherson taught, “I wish to converse of 1 explicit angle and observe we have to undertake if we’re to satisfy our Heavenly Father’s excessive expectations. It’s this: willingly to just accept and even search correction. Correction is important if we might conform our lives “unto a good man, [that is,] unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ” (Ephesians 4:13).[ii]

He stated that “divine chastening has not less than three functions: (1) to steer us to repent, (2) to refine and sanctify us, and (3) at occasions to redirect our course in life to what God is aware of is a greater path… If we sincerely want and try to measure as much as the excessive expectations of our Heavenly Father, He’ll be certain that we obtain all the assistance we’d like, whether or not or not it’s comforting, strengthening, or chastening…  Finally, a lot of our chastening ought to come from inside—we should always grow to be self-correcting.” [iii]

Malachi’s, “My Messenger”

Malachi’s prophecies had been in all probability spoken about 460-430 B.C., about eighty years after Haggai and Zechariah spurred the folks on to rebuild the temple. And but, the dramatic guarantees of those prophets had been nonetheless removed from achievement. This left the nation discouraged and disillusioned in what they thought had been unfulfilled guarantees.

They confirmed an more and more informal angle towards worship and the requirements which God had set. The folks badly wanted to rebuild their relationship with the Lord. They wanted an assurance of his love, and a problem to right their disobedience. Nonetheless, earlier than he despatched his messenger to right them, the Lord assured them of his love (see Malachi 1:2). This units a basis for his or her obedience, as a result of they’re assured of God’s eternal love. He wouldn’t forsake them and select one other folks.

Malachi in Hebrew means “my messenger,” and the Lord, via his messenger, desired to convey his displeasure with the best way the clergymen had been dishonoring their priesthood. He advised them that they had “departed out of the best way” and “corrupted the covenant of Levi” (Malachi 1:6-8). They supplied unworthy sacrifices, giving the Lord lower than the perfect. Israelite clergymen had been providing blemished and sickly animals as sacrifices within the temple, which the Lord had forbidden (see Leviticus 22:17-25). These sacrifices had been to be in similitude of God’s good son, and but these clergymen had been attempting to show a revenue by saving the perfect animals on the market. We’d decide them harshly, however we’d ask ourselves, “Will we ever provide the Lord lower than our greatest effort?”

They had been performing service with out actual intent. Malachi factors out that nobody even shuts the door with no objective, (see Malachi 1:10) and but the clergymen are providing sacrifice on the temple with out actual intent. We could condemn them for this, however are we ever responsible of the identical factor?  God states that he’s receiving extra acceptable worship from the Gentiles and the heathen—an announcement that’s supposed to shock Malachi’s Jewish listeners (see Malachi 1:11). The clergymen have regarded the Lord’s service as a “weariness” and “snuffed” at their priestly duties (see Malachi 1:13-14). They confirmed apathetic fatigue as a substitute of enjoyment.

Their poor conduct is affecting different folks as nicely. This lack of respect for the Lord had “brought on many to stumble” (see Malachi 2:8). We have now seen this within the Ebook of Mormon, when the conduct of Corianton was a stumbling block to the non secular development of others. His father Alma advised him, “Once they noticed your conduct, they’d not consider in my phrases” (see Alma 39:11). His actions rang loud of their ears. We are able to all be taught from his instance, as a cautionary story.

Correct Conduct of a Priest—the Distinction Between the Preferrred and the Actual

The motive for God’s self-discipline of those depraved clergymen was that his “covenant is likely to be with Levi” and never be corrupted.  Malachi contrasted their conduct with the qualities of a righteous priesthood holder. Such an individual “revered God” and “the legislation of fact was in his mouth,” fulfilling the duty to check the phrase of God and make it identified to others. He “walked with males in peace and fairness,” having a godly character. He turned “many away from iniquity” and “stored data” because the “messenger of the  Lord of Hosts.” As a substitute of treating  all males equally, that they had “been partial within the legislation,” and “dealt treacherously” with their fellow males (see Malachi 2:4-10). Indifference towards God is quickly mirrored in our callousness in direction of each other. When God and his legal guidelines are revered, so are our fellow males. As a result of the clergymen within the days of Malachi fell so wanting God’s ideally suited, the folks held them in contempt.

Untrue Clergymen and Damaged Marriages

Marriage is a holy establishment to the Lord. When marriage vows are taken frivolously or damaged, we sin in opposition to one thing that’s holy to God. He has set aside marriage as a option to fulfill his functions for his kids.

In Malachi’s day, the boys of Judah and Levi had turned to international ladies and brought them as wives. One Bible commentator surmises that the boys “stored their wives until that they had handed their youth, after which put them away, that they could get younger ones of their place.”[iv] Will we ever see this occur right this moment? Many had divorced their Israelite wives with the intention to accommodate their unrighteous needs. The uncared for and divorced wives would come to the temple and make an attraction to God on the altar. When their husbands then supplied sacrifices to God at that very same altar, it offended God. He stated that he wouldn’t obtain such choices. Once they requested why, the Lord advised them that in being untrue to the wedding vow, that they had “dealt treacherously.” God had been a witness between every man and “the spouse of thy youth,” . . . “the spouse of thy covenant” (see Malachi 2:11,13-15). The Lord was offended with the clergymen for figuring out of the issue, and never executing justice and allowing straightforward divorce.

The Previous Testomony typically makes use of the analogy of a wedding relationship to explain God’s relationship along with his covenant folks. As solemn a bond exists between Jehovah and Israel as exists between husband and spouse. However Judah had chosen one other accomplice, “the daughter of a wierd god.” God’s command in opposition to combined marriages in Israel had nothing to do with race, however with religion. The Hebrew idiom “the grasp and the scholar” is one other manner of claiming “everybody.”

The needs of creating the husband and spouse “one,” was that they could have a “godly seed.” Elementary to God’s plan for marriage is the important oneness between husband and spouse with the intention to set up a correct surroundings for elevating godly offspring. God permits divorce particularly circumstances, though he at all times hopes for repentance, forgiveness, and reconciliation in marriage.

The phrase “The Lord God of Israel hateth placing away: for one covereth violence along with his garment” wants clarification (see Malachi 2:16). A part of the wedding ceremony in Bible occasions concerned the husband overlaying his spouse along with his garment as a logo of the safety he introduced her. When a spouse is forsaken or mistreated, the person covers “his personal garment with violence.” It is because the husband and spouse are one, and he can’t mistreat his spouse with out bringing distress and destruction to himself.[v] Paul taught that “husbands ought to like their wives as their very own our bodies” (see Ephesians 5:28). Stating it negatively, whenever you neglect your spouse, you neglect your self.

God requires faithfulness from his folks—faithfulness to himself and faithfulness in human relationships. What’s the connection between the legislation of chastity and the spirit? It’s unattainable to have lustful ideas and the spirit each—they’re mutually unique. (see Doctrine and Covenants 42:22-23) We have to management which ideas we permit to entertain us, lest we lose the spirit and grow to be topic to the temptations of the pure man.

All betrayals meet with God’s disapproval. Subsequently, the phrase “take heed to your spirit” is repeated twice as a result of it’s so necessary (Malachi 2:15-16). If now we have allowed our hearts to grow to be vital or embittered in direction of these with whom now we have made covenants, if we “take heed to [our] spirit,” we will change our emotions in direction of them. If we let the Spirit soften our hearts, we will as soon as once more really feel related to them and let love change bitterness.

“The place is the God of Justice?” (Malachi 2:17)

The folks of God in Malachi’s day had been discouraged as a result of it appeared just like the depraved prospered and had it higher than those that had been righteous. This stuffed them with doubt and unbelief, and so they grumbled that “everybody who does evil is sweet within the sight of the Lord”. . . “yea, they that work wickedness are arrange” (see Malachi 2:17,  3:14-15) The individuals are asking, “What good does it do to reside the gospel if my depraved neighbor appears to have all the pieces? What good has all our righteousness finished? We have now wasted our time strolling ‘mournfully’ earlier than the Lord!” That is an historical query—Job asks it additionally.

Nonetheless, this sort of speak from God’s folks is wearisome to God. “Ye have wearied the Lord together with your phrases” (Malachi 2:17). They’re judging unrighteous judgment. They want to have the ability to determine that which they do have. They want to have the ability to inform the distinction between iniquity and prosperity. “Wickedness by no means was happiness,” (Alma 41:10) and true pleasure comes solely from obedience to the Lord. Time will reveal God’s true blessings. He’ll carry out his work “that males could discern between the righteous and the depraved” (Doctrine and Covenants 101:95) and “between him that serveth God and him that serveth him not” (Malachi 3:18). Time will present that the Lord’s manner pays off! It is a onerous lesson for a lot of moderns to know, partly due to our impatience. We would like all the pieces immediately, if not sooner. We are able to higher acknowledge and admire the Lord’s non secular rewards if we don’t use the measuring stick of the world.

Then those who “feared the Lord spake typically to at least one one other, and the Lord hearkened, and heard it, and a e-book of remembrance was written earlier than him for them that feared the Lord, and that thought upon his identify” (Malachi 3:16). Right here Malachi assures the those who not solely will God keep in mind their righteousness, however he’ll write it down in a “e-book of remembrance.” He guarantees that they would be the Lord’s folks. “And so they shall be mine, saith the Lord of hosts, in that day once I make up my jewels” (Malachi 3:17). President Nelson cited this scripture when he described these being gathered. The Lord refers to his folks collectively as his “peculiar treasure”(Exodus 19:5),”his jewels,” and as “a holy nation” (Exodus 19:6).[vi]  In Hebrew, “peculiar treasure” is  segulah, which means “choose, guarded, endeared, shut up, protected against, prized, and sedulously preserved.” You might be bought, like an costly treasure, with the valuable blood of the atonement.

The Messenger of the Covenant

The Lord’s messenger shall put together the best way earlier than his Second Coming. A key to understanding Malachi 3:1-4 is in figuring out the messenger who would put together the world for the day of judgment. The Savior recognized John the Baptist as that messenger (see Matthew 11:10). John’s ministry throughout the Lord’s mortal mission fulfilled the prophecy however solely partly, as a result of the context of the prophecy is with Jesus’ second coming. John appears to have understood that his function would lengthen past his mortal ministry. He would have an element within the restoration of the gospel, which might put together the world for Christ’s Second Coming. He would confer the keys of the priesthood upon males within the final dispensation. When requested who he was, he acknowledged, “I’m the voice of 1 crying within the wilderness, Make straight the best way of the Lord, as stated the prophet Esaias” (John 1:23), referring to Isaiah 40:3. The context of Isaiah’s phrases, like Malachi’s, doesn’t correspond with the occasions of the primary coming of the Lord. They converse, quite, of the second, when “the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it collectively” (Isaiah 40:5). John would thus be the Lord’s messenger twice, as soon as to arrange the best way for his first coming after which once more for his second.

Elder Bruce R. McConkie stated, “John the Baptist did this very factor within the meridian of time, but it surely stays for Joseph Smith to carry out the fantastic work in our day. He’s the latter-day messenger who was despatched to revive the gospel, which itself prepares the folks for the return of the Lord.”[vii]  After all, Jesus Christ, the nice “messenger of the covenant” who we enjoyment of, shall come. “However who could abide the day of his coming? And who shall stand when he appeareth? for he is sort of a refiner’s fireplace” (Malachi 3:2). One can’t learn these phrases with out the attractive music of Handel echoing in our ears.  Why do we’d like the “refiner’s fireplace?”

Elder Donald L. Hallstrom stated in April 2016 Normal Convention:

When troublesome issues happen in our lives, what’s our rapid response? Is it confusion or doubt or non secular withdrawal? Is it a blow to our religion? Will we blame God or others for our circumstances? Or is our first response to recollect who we’re—that we’re kids of a loving God? Is that coupled with an absolute belief that He permits some earthly struggling as a result of He is aware of it’ll bless us, like a refiner’s fireplace, to grow to be like Him and to achieve our everlasting inheritance?

An nameless writer relates this well-known story:

In a Bible examine of the e-book of Malachi, chapter three, a bunch learn verse three: “He’ll sit as a refiner and air purifier of silver” with nice puzzlement. The ladies questioned what this assertion meant concerning the nature of God. One of many ladies supplied to search out out concerning the technique of refining silver and get again to the group at their subsequent Bible examine. She  made an appointment with a silversmith to look at him work with out mentioning something concerning the purpose past her curiosity concerning the technique of refining silver. She watched because the silver smith held a bit of silver over the fireplace and let it warmth up. He defined that in refining silver, one wanted to carry the silver in the midst of the fireplace the place the flames had been hottest in order to burn away all of the impurities. The  lady considered God holding us in such a sizzling spot—then she thought once more concerning the verse, that he sits as a refiner and air purifier of silver. She requested the silver smith if it was true that he needed to sit there in entrance of the fireplace the entire time the silver was being refined. The person answered that, sure, he not solely needed to sit there holding the silver, however he needed to hold his eyes on the silver all the time it was within the fireplace. If the silver was left even a second too lengthy within the flames, it might be destroyed. The lady was silent for a second. Then she requested the silver smith, “How are you aware when the silver is totally refined?” He smiled at her and answered, “Oh, that’s straightforward—once I see my picture in it.” 

The Sons of Levi Make an Providing in Righteousness

“And he shall sit as a refiner and air purifier of silver: and he shall purify the sons of Levi, and purge them as gold and silver, that they might provide unto the Lord an providing in righteousness” (Malachi 3:3-4). In Doctrine and Covenants 13, John the Baptist conferred the priesthood upon the Prophet Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdrey, and advised them that “this shall by no means be taken from the earth, till the sons of Levi do provide once more an providing unto the Lord in righteousness.”

Who’re the sons of Levi? What providing will they make? Why is that providing so vital that the priesthood won’t be taken from the earth? Why is it so necessary that the priesthood itself was restored to permit the providing to be achieved? What do purging and purifying need to do with the providing?

First, who’re the sons of Levi? In biblical occasions the sons of Levi stored “the cost of the tabernacle of the congregation, and the cost of the holy place” (1 Chronicles 23:32). In different phrases, the sons of Levi had been primarily the traditional temple ordinance staff. Because the Restoration proceeded, extra data was revealed and extra keys had been restored in regards to the providing spoken of by John the Baptist. On September 22 and 23, 1832, the anniversary of Moroni’s go to, an excellent revelation was given on the priesthood. On this revelation the phrases of Malachi’s and John the Baptist’s prophecies had been repeated, however with totally different and added phrases that amplified and gave additional clarification concerning the crucial providing: “The sons of Moses and in addition the sons of Aaron shall provide an acceptable providing and sacrifice in the home of the Lord.” (Doctrine and Covenants 84:31; emphasis added.)

The Sons of Moses maintain the Melchizedek priesthood, and the sons of Aaron maintain the Aaronic priesthood. Moses and Aaron had been each from the tribe of Levi. John the Baptist’s promise refers to each priesthoods. We additional be taught that the providing shall be made in “the home of the Lord.” That helps clarify why the sons of Levi have to be purged and purified. One have to be clear and worthy each to enter the temple and in addition to train priesthood authority.

It’s not shocking that an “providing and sacrifice” needs to be achieved within the temple. Choices and sacrifices had been finished anciently at altars, and the altars of the temple stand on the middle of all we do in the home of the Lord. The Lord provides the phrase acceptable to the providing. When it’s made, will probably be made in such a fashion that the Lord can obtain it. The phrase turns into critically necessary later in understanding the precise nature of the providing.

Because the Restoration continued, the Kirtland Temple was constructed, and necessary keys had been restored. The main themes of the priesthood had been there emphasised by angelic messengers. “Moses appeared . . . and dedicated . . . the keys of the gathering of Israel from the 4 elements of the earth.” The promise of Abraham was reiterated as “Elias appeared, and dedicated the dispensation of the gospel of Abraham, saying that in us and our seed all generations after us needs to be blessed.” Elijah then returned to finish the mandatory authority to “flip the hearts of the fathers to the youngsters, and the youngsters to the fathers.” (Doctrine and Covenants 110:11, 12,15; emphasis added.) The gathering, the Abrahamic covenant, and the turning of hearts are all inseparably related with temples. The right authority was now in place, and the providing may now be made.

The Saints moved on to Nauvoo and as soon as once more got the command to construct a temple.[viii] They’d realized in Missouri the significance of responding to that command. Their failure to take action was a significant component of their expulsion from Jackson County. (See Doctrine and Covenants 97; 101:43-54.) They’d realized in Kirtland that when the Lord gave a command to construct a temple and the Saints didn’t instantly reply, that they had “sinned a really grievous sin,” which the Lord in comparison with “strolling in darkness at noon-day.” (Doctrine and Covenants 95:6.) Now in Nauvoo the Lord revealed the redeeming work for the useless and pressed upon the Saints the need of finishing a temple with the intention to start this nice work in a spot sacred sufficient for its significance. With the command to construct his home, the Lord added a sobering warning: “I command you, all ye my saints, to construct a home unto me; and I grant unto you a enough time to construct a home unto me; . . . and if you don’t this stuff on the finish of the appointment ye shall be rejected as a church, together with your useless, saith the Lord your God.” (Doctrine and Covenants 124:31-32.)

However all the opposite works of the Church and the priesthood, the failure to assemble a temple (the place the Lord may “restore once more . . . the fulness of the priesthood” [Doctrine and Covenants 124:28] and the place the providing could possibly be made) would outcome within the rejection of the Church.[ix] Within the minutes of the October 1841 convention, the Lord additionally instructed the Saints to not maintain one other convention till it could possibly be held within the temple. Apparently, the Lord felt there was no want for additional directions till essentially the most vital one in all all was commenced. (Historical past of the Church 4:426.)

The groundwork was now laid for the vital providing to be made, and it was regarded ahead to by all angelic messengers who had returned to earth to revive priesthood keys and authorities. Nonetheless, Devil was not idle. Joseph Smith was in hiding. Figuring out the Lord’s concern that the work not be stopped for any purpose, Joseph gave directions to the Saints via letters. In a letter written September 1, 1842, Joseph gave the Saints the Lord’s encouragement: “Thus saith the Lord: Let the work of my temple and all of the works which I’ve appointed unto you, be continued on and never stop; and let your diligence, and your perseverance, and persistence, and your works be redoubled.” (Doctrine and Covenants 127:4.)

5 days later, on September 6, 1842, in a letter to the Church, Joseph Smith described the “acceptable providing.” Quoting Malachi’s prophecy as soon as once more in regards to the “sons of Levi,” Joseph then added this instruction: “Allow us to, subsequently, as a church and a folks and as Latter-day Saints, provide unto the Lord an providing in righteousness; and allow us to current in his holy temple, when it’s completed, a e-book containing the data of our useless, which shall be worthy of all acceptation.” (Doctrine and Covenants 128:24; emphasis added.) Not less than a part of the providing Malachi, John the Baptist, and different prophets had in view was a e-book containing the finished ordinance work for all of the useless. It is going to take the Millennium to realize that fruits and make it “worthy of all acceptation,” for a way can the Lord settle for it till all of his kids who will obtain salvation and everlasting life have been supplied with the chance?

As with many prophecies, the providing spoken of has different fulfillments, however it’s important that the one which Lord selected to emphasise within the revelations of the Doctrine and Covenants is that of the work for the useless. With out that providing, the entire earth could be wasted on the Lord’s coming. How applicable that the providing we’re to position on the altars of the temple is a e-book. It’s a honest trade for the fantastic e-book our Father in Heaven has positioned on those self same altars as his providing and reward to us.

The Home windows of Heaven

The Lord, via the prophet Malachi asks the folks, “Will a person rob God?” (Malachi 3:8). The Lord offers us all now we have and asks so little in return. The “curse” the individuals are below is depriving themselves of the blessings the Lord needs to provide them. He has promised to “open the home windows of heaven and pour down a blessing so nice that there shall not be room sufficient to obtain it.” He’ll “rebuke the devourer” for our sakes. This may increasingly consult with an insect destroying our fields, as in Joel, indicating a plentiful harvest and temporal prosperity, or it could consult with the non secular devourer, Devil, who may have significantly much less energy in our lives.

Elder David A. Bednar commented on how these blessings could also be realized:

Typically as we train and testify concerning the legislation of tithing, we emphasize the rapid, dramatic, and readily recognizable temporal blessings that we obtain. And absolutely such blessings do happen. But among the numerous blessings we get hold of as we’re obedient to this commandment are important however refined. Such blessings could be discerned provided that we’re each spiritually attentive and observant.

The imagery of the “home windows” of heaven utilized by Malachi is most instructive. Home windows permit pure mild to enter right into a constructing. In like method, non secular illumination and perspective are poured out via the home windows of heaven and into our lives as we honor the legislation of tithing.

For instance, a refined however important blessing we obtain is the non secular reward of gratitude that allows our appreciation for what now we have to constrain needs for what we would like. A grateful individual is wealthy in contentment. An ungrateful individual suffers within the poverty of infinite discontentment.

The blessing that involves us via heavenly home windows could also be larger capability to behave and alter our personal circumstances quite than anticipating our circumstances to be modified by somebody or one thing else. Eyes and ears of religion are required, nonetheless, to note in us an elevated non secular and temporal capability to do extra with much less, a keener skill to prioritize and simplify, and an enhanced skill to take correct care of the fabric possessions we have already got acquired.[x]

Something we give to God is however a small return for all we owe him! Years in the past I used to be impressed by this quote and I’ve by no means forgotten it—”We pay tithing as a result of now we have religion, not as a result of now we have cash.”

“The Hearts of the Youngsters Shall Flip”

When Moroni quoted Malachi 4 in its entirety to Joseph Smith, he did so “with a bit of variation from the best way it reads” within the Bible (Joseph Smith Historical past 1:36-39), saying it was about to be fulfilled. “Behold, I’ll reveal unto you the Priesthood, by the hand of Elijah the prophet, earlier than the approaching of the nice and dreadful day of the Lord.

He additionally quoted the subsequent verse in a different way: And he shall plant within the hearts of the kids the guarantees made to the fathers, and the hearts of the youngsters shall flip to their fathers. If it weren’t so, the entire earth could be completely wasted at his coming.”

Joseph Smith learn the phrase “flip the hearts of the youngsters to their fathers,” and defined:

Now, the phrase flip right here needs to be translated bind, or seal. However what’s the object of this necessary mission? or how is it to be fulfilled? The keys are to be delivered, the spirit of Elijah is to come back, the Gospel to be established, the Saints of God gathered, Zion constructed up, and the Saints to come back up as saviors on Mount Zion.

However how are they to grow to be saviors on Mount Zion? By constructing their temples, erecting their baptismal fonts, and going forth and receiving all of the ordinances, baptisms, confirmations, washings, anointings, ordinations and sealing powers upon their heads, in behalf of all their progenitors who’re useless, and redeem them that they might come forth within the first resurrection and be exalted to thrones of glory with them; and herein is the chain that binds the hearts of the fathers to the youngsters, and the youngsters to the fathers, which fulfills the mission of Elijah. And I might to God that this temple was now finished, that we’d go into it, and go to work and enhance our time, and make use of the seals whereas they’re on earth.

The Saints haven’t an excessive amount of time to avoid wasting and redeem their useless, and collect collectively their residing relations, that they might be saved additionally, earlier than the earth shall be smitten, and the consumption decreed falls upon the world. I might advise all of the Saints to go to with their would possibly and collect collectively all their residing relations to this place, that they might be sealed and saved.[xi]

Yearly on the Passover meal, the Jews set an additional place for Elijah, not figuring out when his prophesied return would happen. When was the prophecy fulfilled? Based on Doctrine and Covenants 110, Elijah appeared on April 3, 1836 within the Kirtland Temple. That yr, it simply occurred to be Passover when the Jews had been setting out an additional seat for Elijah. Think about how shocked they are going to be once they be taught that he got here to Ohio!

The keys which Elijah restored are most vital. One of many blessings that grew out of this energy was everlasting marriage and the resultant blessing of the sealing of kids to oldsters. By extension, it additionally allowed generations to be linked collectively again over the course of the historical past of the earth. The blessings of the gospel and the sealing energy are thus granted to these righteous individuals who had been born in periods of apostasy, and had no entry to them.

So necessary is that this work that the entire objective of the earth could be pissed off if it weren’t finished. Trendy revelation explains why. Every era must be welded to the one earlier than it, such that an entire, full, and excellent union could be made.

The earth shall be smitten with a curse except there’s a welding hyperlink … between the fathers and the youngsters… For we with out them can’t be made good; neither can they with out us be made good. Neither can they nor we be made good with out those that have died within the gospel additionally; … for it’s crucial within the ushering in of the dispensation of the fulness of occasions, … that an entire and full and excellent union, and welding collectively of dispensations, and keys, and powers, and glories ought to happen, and be revealed from the times of Adam even to the current time” (Doctrine and Covenants 128:18).

One of many first issues crucial for that union is the group of the righteous from each dispensation into one everlasting household. On this manner all of the keys, powers, and glories from the times of Adam to the current are introduced collectively to arrange the earth for the return of the Savior.

In a really possible way, the useless can’t be made good with out their latter-day descendants doing the mandatory temple work. Equally, these residing within the final days can’t obtain all the ability crucial for salvation till the hyperlinks are totally full. The fathers had been promised that their posterity should save them with the intention to save themselves. As the youngsters come to know how dependent they’re upon the fathers, their hearts flip to them. Because the welding hyperlinks are totally fashioned, the household of God is established and ready for exaltation. On this manner the earth fulfills its objective.

I like how Elder David A. Bednar has summed up Elijah’s ministry and mission.

Elijah was an Previous Testomony prophet via whom mighty miracles had been carried out. He sealed the heavens, and no rain fell in historical Israel for 3½ years. He multiplied a widow’s meal and oil. He raised a younger boy from the useless, and he referred to as down fireplace from heaven in a problem to the prophets of Baal. (See 1 Kings 17–18.) On the conclusion of Elijah’s mortal ministry, he “went up by a whirlwind into heaven” (2 Kings 2:11) and was translated.

We be taught from latter-day revelation that Elijah held the sealing energy of the Melchizedek Priesthood and was the final prophet to take action earlier than the time of Jesus Christ.  The Prophet Joseph Smith defined, “The spirit, energy, and calling of Elijah is, that ye have energy to carry the important thing of the … fullness of the Melchizedek Priesthood … ; and to … get hold of … all of the ordinances belonging to the dominion of God” (Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Joseph Smith [2007], 311; emphasis added). This sacred sealing authority is important for priesthood ordinances to be legitimate and binding each on earth and in heaven.

Elijah appeared with Moses on the Mount of Transfiguration (see Matthew 17:3) and conferred this authority upon Peter, James, and John. Elijah appeared once more with Moses and others on April 3, 1836, within the Kirtland Temple and conferred the identical keys upon Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery. (D&C 110:14–16).

The Prophet Joseph Smith declared: “The best duty on this world that God has laid upon us is to hunt after our useless. … For it’s crucial that the sealing energy needs to be in our fingers to seal our youngsters and our useless for the fulness of the dispensation of occasions—a dispensation to satisfy the guarantees made by Jesus Christ earlier than the inspiration of the world for the salvation of man. … Therefore, God stated, ‘I’ll ship you Elijah the prophet’” (Teachings: Joseph Smith, 475).

Joseph additional defined:

“However what’s the object of [the coming of Elijah]? or how is it to be fulfilled? The keys are to be delivered, the spirit of Elijah is to come back, the Gospel to be established, the Saints of God gathered, Zion constructed up, and the Saints to come back up as saviors on Mount Zion [see Obadiah 1:21].

“However how are they to grow to be saviors on Mount Zion? By constructing their temples … and going forth and receiving all of the ordinances … in behalf of all their progenitors who’re useless … ; and herein is the chain that binds the hearts of the fathers to the youngsters, and the youngsters to the fathers, which fulfills the mission of Elijah” (Teachings: Joseph Smith, 472–73).

Elder Russell M. Nelson has taught that the Spirit of Elijah is “a manifestation of the Holy Ghost bearing witness of the divine nature of the household” (“A New Harvest Time,” Ensign, Might 1998, 34). This distinctive affect of the Holy Ghost attracts folks to determine, doc, and cherish their ancestors and members of the family—each previous and current.

The Spirit of Elijah impacts folks inside and out of doors of the Church. Nonetheless, as members of Christ’s restored Church, now we have the covenant duty to go looking out our ancestors and supply for them the saving ordinances of the gospel. . .

For these causes we do household historical past analysis, construct temples, and carry out vicarious ordinances. For these causes Elijah was despatched to revive the sealing authority that binds on earth and in heaven. We’re the Lord’s brokers within the work of salvation and exaltation that can stop “the entire earth [from being] smitten with a curse” (D&C 110:15) when He returns once more. That is our responsibility and nice blessing.

Elder Bednar then invited the youth of the Church to make use of their technological abilities to help others in figuring out their household histories. He promised them nice blessings in the event that they did so. [xii]

Concluding Ideas

We have now seen God’s hesed, his affected person, enduring covenant love, manifest in numerous Previous Testomony tales this yr. This story nonetheless continues right this moment. Malachi prophesied, “The Solar of Righteousness [will] come up with therapeutic in his wings,” (Malachi 4:2). Christ’s condescension to come back to earth to convey each bodily and non secular therapeutic to those that come unto him is the best proof of God’s love for all his kids.

The risen Savior quoted sections of the prophecies of Malachi to the Nephites and Lamanites, stating that the Father himself had commanded him to take action. The rationale, he acknowledged, was “that they need to be given unto future generations” (3 Nephi 24:1; 26:2).  These folks wanted the phrases of Malachi with the intention to perceive the brand new dimension which the work of the Lord took, now that he had fulfilled his mortal mission. As much as this time many of the preparation had been for his first coming. From that time on, it might be for his second. The phrases of Malachi reveal not solely key occasions but in addition the character of the work that may put together for that coming.

The prophecies of Malachi present the duty that the prophets of the previous day and the Saints of the latter day have within the work of the Lord. They testify to the dependence every era of righteous folks has on those that got here earlier than and people who will come after.

 

[i] Elder Dallin H. Oaks, “The Problem to Change into,” October 2000 Normal Convention.

[ii] Elder D. Todd Christopherson, “As Might as I Love, I Rebuke and Chasten,” Ensign or Liahona, Might 2011, 97-100.

[iii] Ibid.

[iv] Enduring Phrase Bible Commentary on this verse, obtainable at https://enduringword.com/bible-commentary/malachi-2/

[v] Ibid.

[vi] President Russell M. Nelson, “Let God Prevail,” 2020.

[vii] Bruce R. McConkie, New Witness for the Articles of Religion, 1985, 629.

[viii] See the Institute guide Church Historical past within the Fulness of Occasions for the small print of those occasions..

[ix] Don’t you suppose President Nelson and the opposite prophets have felt the “strain” from these phrases because the mantle fell upon them? Not simply “a” temple, however many, many extra.

[x] Elder David A. Bednar, “The Home windows of Heaven,” Ensign or Liahona, November 2013, 17-20.

[xi] Joseph Smith, Historical past of the Church, Quantity 6:183-84.

[xii] Elder David A. Bednar, “The Hearts of the Youngsters Shall Flip” (Ensign or Liahona, November 2011, 24-27.

Leave a Comment