|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
2:1-9 What is here said of the covenant of priesthood, is true of the covenant of grace made with all believers, as spiritual priests. It is a covenant of life and peace; it assures all believers of all happiness, both in this world and in that to come. It is an honour to God's servants to be employed as his messengers. The priest's lips should not keep knowledge from his people, but keep it for them. The people are all concerned to know the will of the Lord. We must not only consult the written word, but desire instruction and advice from God's messengers, in the affairs of our souls. Ministers must exert themselves to the utmost for the conversion of sinners; and even among those called Israelites, there are many to be turned from iniquity. Those ministers, and those only, are likely to turn men from sin, who preach sound doctrine, and live holy lives according to the Scripture. Many departed from this way; thus they misled the people. Such as walk with God in peace and righteousness, and turn others from sin, honour God; he will honour them, while those who despise him shall be lightly esteemed.
Verse 7. - For the priest's lips should keep knowledge. It was the priest's duty to study the Law and to teach it faithfully, as it is said of Aaron, in Ecclus. 45:17, "He gave unto him his commandments, and authority in the statutes of judgments, that he should teach Jacob the testimonies, and inform Israel in his laws." The law, here and vers 6, 8, means system of teaching, or the torah. At his month. The priest was the appointed interpreter of the Law (see Leviticus 10:11; Deuteronomy 17:9-11; Deuteronomy 33:10; and the note on Haggai 2:11). He is the messenger of the Lord. He announces God's will to men, explaining the Law to meet the varied circumstances which occur in daily life; he intervenes between God and man, offering man's worship to the Lord. So Haggai (Haggai 1:13) is called "the Lord's messenger," or angel. Some see here an allusion to Malachi's own name or office (see Introduction, § II.; comp. Deuteronomy 21:5; 2 Chronicles 17:9).
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
For the priest's lips should keep knowledge,.... Or "shall keep knowledge", as the Septuagint and Vulgate Latin versions; or "do keep knowledge", as the Arabic version; and so the Syriac version, "for the lips of the priest drop knowledge"; all this is true of Christ our great High Priest; for as it was predicted of him, that his lips should keep knowledge, so they have kept it, and do keep it; not concealing it, but preserving it, and communicating it freely and openly; as he did to his disciples and followers when here on earth, and by them to others; and still does by his Spirit, giving to men the knowledge of themselves and state; the knowledge of himself, and the way of salvation by him, and of the truths of the Gospel:
and they should seek the law at his mouth; not the law of Moses, but the doctrine of grace, and any wholesome instruction and advice; which he is greatly qualified to give, being the wonderful Counsellor: it may be rendered, "they shall seek", or "do seek"; and which has been fulfilled, especially in the Gentiles, and in the isles that waited for his law or doctrine, Isaiah 11:10,
for he is the messenger of the Lord of hosts; or "angel" (w); he is the Angel of God's presence, and of the covenant, Isaiah 63:9 Malachi 3:1 which name he has from being sent, for he came not of himself, but his Father sent him; he was sent as a priest to atone for the sins of his people, and to be their Saviour; and as a prophet, to instruct and teach them; and therefore they should seek to him for knowledge, and attend his word and ordinances, and implore his spirit and grace.
(w) Sept; "angelus", V. L. Pagninus, Montanus, Junius & Tremellius, Cocceius, Burkius.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
7. In doing so (Mal 2:6) he did his duty as a priest, "for," &c.
knowledge—of the law, its doctrines, and positive and negative precepts (Le 10:10, 11; De 24:8; Jer 18:18; Hag 2:11).
the law—that is, its true sense.
messenger of … Lord—the interpreter of His will; compare as to the prophets, Hag 1:13. So ministers are called "ambassadors of Christ" (2Co 5:20); and the bishops of the seven churches in Revelation, "angels" or messengers (Re 2:1, 8, 12, 18; 3:1, 7, 14; compare Ga 4:14).
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