Malachi 3:1
Parallel Verses
New International Version
"I will send my messenger, who will prepare the way before me. Then suddenly the Lord you are seeking will come to his temple; the messenger of the covenant, whom you desire, will come," says the LORD Almighty.

New Living Translation
"Look! I am sending my messenger, and he will prepare the way before me. Then the Lord you are seeking will suddenly come to his Temple. The messenger of the covenant, whom you look for so eagerly, is surely coming," says the LORD of Heaven's Armies.

English Standard Version
“Behold, I send my messenger, and he will prepare the way before me. And the Lord whom you seek will suddenly come to his temple; and the messenger of the covenant in whom you delight, behold, he is coming, says the LORD of hosts.

New American Standard Bible
"Behold, I am going to send My messenger, and he will clear the way before Me. And the Lord, whom you seek, will suddenly come to His temple; and the messenger of the covenant, in whom you delight, behold, He is coming," says the LORD of hosts.

King James Bible
Behold, I will send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me: and the Lord, whom ye seek, shall suddenly come to his temple, even the messenger of the covenant, whom ye delight in: behold, he shall come, saith the LORD of hosts.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
See, I am going to send My messenger, and he will clear the way before Me. Then the Lord you seek will suddenly come to His temple, the Messenger of the covenant you desire--see, He is coming," says the LORD of Hosts.

International Standard Version
"Watch out! I'm sending my messenger, and he will prepare the way before me. Then suddenly, the LORD you are looking for will come to his Temple. He is the messenger of the covenant whom you desire. Watch out! He is coming!" says the LORD of the Heavenly Armies.

NET Bible
"I am about to send my messenger, who will clear the way before me. Indeed, the Lord you are seeking will suddenly come to his temple, and the messenger of the covenant, whom you long for, is certainly coming," says the LORD who rules over all.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
"I'm going to send my messenger, and he will clear the way ahead of me. Then the Lord you are looking for will suddenly come to his temple. The messenger of the promise will come. He is the one you want," says the LORD of Armies.

Jubilee Bible 2000
Behold, I send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me; and the Lord, whom ye seek, shall suddenly come to his temple, and the angel of the covenant, whom ye desire: behold, he comes, said the LORD of the hosts.

King James 2000 Bible
Behold, I will send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me: and the Lord, whom you seek, shall suddenly come to his temple, even the messenger of the covenant, whom you delight in: behold, he shall come, says the LORD of hosts.

American King James Version
Behold, I will send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me: and the LORD, whom you seek, shall suddenly come to his temple, even the messenger of the covenant, whom you delight in: behold, he shall come, said the LORD of hosts.

American Standard Version
Behold, I send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me: and the Lord, whom ye seek, will suddenly come to his temple; and the messenger of the covenant, whom ye desire, behold, he cometh, saith Jehovah of hosts.

Douay-Rheims Bible
Behold I send my angel, and he shall prepare the way before my face. And presently the Lord, whom you seek, and the angel of the testament, whom you desire, shall come to his temple. Behold he cometh, saith the Lord of hosts.

Darby Bible Translation
Behold, I send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me; and the Lord whom ye seek will suddenly come to his temple, and the Angel of the covenant, whom ye delight in: behold, he cometh, saith Jehovah of hosts.

English Revised Version
Behold, I send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me: and the Lord, whom ye seek, shall suddenly come to his temple; and the messenger of the covenant, whom ye delight in, behold, he cometh, saith the LORD of hosts.

Webster's Bible Translation
Behold, I will send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me: and the Lord, whom ye seek, will suddenly come to his temple, even the messenger of the covenant, whom ye delight in: behold, he will come, saith the LORD of hosts.

World English Bible
"Behold, I send my messenger, and he will prepare the way before me; and the Lord, whom you seek, will suddenly come to his temple; and the messenger of the covenant, whom you desire, behold, he comes!" says Yahweh of Armies.

Young's Literal Translation
Lo, I am sending My messenger, And he hath prepared a way before Me, And suddenly come in unto his temple Doth the Lord whom ye are seeking, Even the messenger of the covenant, Whom ye are desiring, Lo, he is coming, said Jehovah of Hosts.
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

3:1-6 The first words of this chapter seem an answer to the scoffers of those days. Here is a prophecy of the appearing of John the Baptist. He is Christ's harbinger. He shall prepare the way before him, by calling men to repentance. The Messiah had been long called, He that should come, and now shortly he will come. He is the Messenger of the covenant. Those who seek Jesus, shall find pleasure in him, often when not looked for. The Lord Jesus, prepares the sinner's heart to be his temple, by the ministry of his word and the convictions of his Spirit, and he enters it as the Messenger of peace and consolation. No hypocrite or formalist can endure his doctrine, or stand before his tribunal. Christ came to distinguish men, to separate between the precious and the vile. He shall sit as a Refiner. Christ, by his gospel, shall purify and reform his church, and by his Spirit working with it, shall regenerate and cleanse souls. He will take away the dross found in them. He will separate their corruptions, which render their faculties worthless and useless. The believer needs not fear the fiery trial of afflictions and temptations, by which the Saviour refines his gold. He will take care it is not more intense or longer than is needful for his good; and this trial will end far otherwise than that of the wicked. Christ will, by interceding for them, make them accepted. Where no fear of God is, no good is to be expected. Evil pursues sinners. God is unchangeable. And though the sentence against evil works be not executed speedily, yet it will be executed; the Lord is as much an enemy to sin as ever. We may all apply this to ourselves. Because we have to do with a God that changes not, therefore it is that we are not consumed; because his compassions fail not.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 1. - Behold, I will send (I send) my messenger. God answers that he is coming to show himself the God of judgment and justice. Are they ready to meet him and to bear his sentence? Who this "messenger" is is disputed. That no angel or heavenly visitant is meant is clear from historical considerations, as no such event took place immediately before the Lord came to his temple. Nor can Malachi himself be intended, as his message was delivered nearly four, hundred years before Messiah came. The announcement is doubtless founded upon Isaiah 40:3, and refers to the same person as the older prophet mentions, who is generally allowed to be John the Baptist, the herald of Christ's advent (Matthew 11:10; John 1:6). Prepare the way before me. The expression is borrowed from Isaiah, loc. cit. (comp. also Isaiah 57:14; Isaiah 62:10). He prepares the way by preaching repentance, and thus removing the obstacle of sin which stood between God and his people. Whom ye seek. When ye ask, "Where is the God of judgment?" Shall suddenly come to his temple. The Lord (ha-Adon) is Jehovah, as in Exodus 23:17; Isaiah 1:24; Isaiah 3:1, etc. There is a change of persons here, as frequently. Jehovah shall unexpectedly come to his temple (τὸν ναὸν ἑαυτοῦ) as King and God of Israel (comp. Ezekiel 43:7). There was a literal fulfilment of this prophecy when Christ was presented in the temple as an infant (Luke 2:22, etc.). Even the messenger of the covenant. He is identified with the Lord; and he is the covenant angel who guided the Israelites to the promised land, and who is seen in the various theophanies of the Old Testament. The Divinity of Messiah is thus unequivocally asserted. In him are fulfilled all the promises made under the old covenant, and he is called (Hebrews 9:15) "the Mediator of the new covenant." Some render," and the Messenger," etc., thus distinguishing the Angel of the covenant from the forerunner who prepares the way. But this is already done by the expressions, "My Messenger," and "the Lord." Whom ye delight in. Whose advent ye expect with eager desire.

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

Behold, I will send my messenger,.... These are the words of Christ, in answer to the question put in the last verse of the preceding chapter Malachi 2:17, "Where is the God of judgment?" intimating that he would quickly appear, and previous to his coming send his messenger or angel; not the angel of death to destroy the wicked, as Jarchi thinks; nor an angel from heaven, as Kimchi; nor Messiah the son of Joseph; as Aben Ezra; nor the Prophet Malachi himself, as Abarbinel; but the same that is called Elijah the prophet, Malachi 4:5 and is no other than John the Baptist, as is clear from Matthew 11:10 called a "messenger" or "angel", not by nature, but by office; and Christ's messenger, because sent by him and on his errand; and which shows the power and authority of Christ in sending forth ministers; his superior excellency to John, and his existence before him, or he could not be sent by him, and so before his incarnation; for John was sent by him before he was in the flesh, and consequently this is a proof of the proper deity of Christ: and the word "behold" is prefixed to this, in order to raise the attention of those that put the above question, and all others; as well as to show that the message John was sent upon was of the greatest moment and importance; as that the Messiah was just ready to appear, his kingdom was at hand, and the Jews ought to believe in him; though it also respects the coming of the Messiah, spoken of in the latter part of the text:

and he shall prepare the way before me; by declaring to the Jews that he was born, and was in the midst of them; by pointing him out unto them; by preaching the doctrine of repentance, and exhorting them to believe in him; and by administering the ordinance of baptism in general to all proper subjects, and in particular to Christ, by which he was made manifest to Israel; See Gill on Mark 1:2 the allusion is to kings and great men sending persons before them when on a journey, to give notice of their coming, and provide for them:

and the Lord, whom ye seek; this is the person himself speaking, the Son of God, and promised Messiah, the Lord of all men, and particularly of his church and people, in right of marriage, by virtue of redemption, and by being their Head and King; so Kimchi and Ben Melech interpret it of him, and even Abarbinel (q) himself; the Messiah that had been so long spoken of and so much expected, and whom the Jews sought after, either in a scoffing manner, expressed in the above question, or rather seriously; some as a temporal deliverer, to free them from the Roman yoke, and bring them into a state of liberty, prosperity, and grandeur; and others as a spiritual Saviour, to deliver from sin, law, hell, and death, and save them with an everlasting salvation:

shall suddenly come to his temple; meaning not his human nature, nor his church, sometimes so called; but the material temple at Jerusalem, the second temple, called "his", because devoted to his service and worship, which proves him to be God, and because of his frequency in it; here he was brought and presented by his parents at the proper time, for the purification of his mother; here he was at twelve years of age disputing with the doctors; and here Simeon, Anna, and others, were waiting for him, Luke 2:22 and we often read of his being here, and of his using his authority in it as the Lord and proprietor of it; and of the Hosannas given him here, Matthew 21:12 the manner in which he should come, "suddenly", may refer to the manifestation of it, quickly after John the Baptist had prepared his way by his doctrine and baptism:

even the messenger of the covenant; not of the covenant of works with Adam, of which there was no mediator and messenger; nor of the covenant of circumcision, at which, according to the Jews, Elias presides; nor of the covenant at Sinai, of which Moses was the mediator; but of the covenant of grace, of which Christ is not only the Surety and Mediator; but, as here, "the Messenger"; because it is revealed, made known, and exhibited in a more glorious manner by him under the Gospel dispensation, through the ministration of the word and ordinances. De Dieu observes, that the word in the Ethiopic language signifies a prince as well as a messenger, and so may be rendered, "the Prince of the covenant", which is a way of speaking used in Daniel 11:22,

whom ye delight in; either carnally, as they pleased themselves with the thoughts of a temporal prince, and of great honour and grandeur under him; and as they would have done, had he submitted to have been made a king by them in this sense; or rather spiritually, and so is to be understood of such who had a spiritual knowledge of him, and joy in him; who rejoiced and delighted in the contemplation of his person, offices, righteousness, and salvation:

he shall come, saith the Lord of hosts; this expresses the certainty of his coming, being said by himself, who is the Lord of hosts, the Lord of armies in heaven and in earth, the King of kings, and Lord of lords. This passage is, in some Jewish writers (r), interpreted of the world to come, or times of the Messiah.

(q) Mashmiah Jeshuah, fol. 76. 4. (r) Bemidbar Rabba, sect. 16. fol. 219. 4.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

CHAPTER 3

Mal 3:1-18. Messiah's Coming, Preceded by His Forerunner, to Punish the Guilty for Various Sins, and to Reward Those Who Fear God.

1. Behold—Calling especial attention to the momentous truths which follow. Ye unbelievingly ask, Where is the God of judgment (Mal 2:7)? "Behold," therefore, "I send," &c. Your unbelief will not prevent My keeping My covenant, and bringing to pass in due time that which ye say will never be fulfilled.

I will send … he shall come—The Father sends the Son: the Son comes. Proving the distinctness of personality between the Father and the Son.

my messenger—John the Baptist; as Mt 3:3; 11:10; Mr 1:2, 3; Lu 1:76; 3:4; 7:26, 27; Joh 1:23, prove. This passage of Malachi evidently rests on that of Isaiah his predecessor (Isa 40:3-5). Perhaps also, as Hengstenberg thinks, "messenger" includes the long line of prophets headed by Elijah (whence his name is put in Mal 4:5 as a representative name), and terminating in John, the last and greatest of the prophets (Mt 11:9-11). John as the representative prophet (the forerunner of Messiah the representative God-man) gathered in himself all the scattered lineaments of previous prophecy (hence Christ terms him "much more than a prophet," Lu 7:26), reproducing all its awful and yet inspiriting utterances: his coarse garb, like that of the old prophets, being a visible exhortation to repentance; the wilderness in which he preached symbolizing the lifeless, barren state of the Jews at that time, politically and spiritually; his topics sin, repentance, and salvation, presenting for the last time the condensed epitome of all previous teachings of God by His prophets; so that he is called pre-eminently God's "messenger." Hence the oldest and true reading of Mr 1:2 is, "as it is written in Isaiah the prophet"; the difficulty of which is, How can the prophecy of Malachi be referred to Isaiah? The explanation is: the passage in Malachi rests on that in Isa 40:3, and therefore the original source of the prophecy is referred to in order to mark this dependency and connection.

the Lord—Ha-Adon in Hebrew. The article marks that it is Jehovah (Ex 23:17; 34:23; compare Jos 3:11, 13). Compare Da 9:17, where the Divine Son is meant by "for THE Lord's sake." God the speaker makes "the Lord," the "messenger of the covenant," one with Himself. "I will send … before Me," adding, "THE Lord … shall … come"; so that "the Lord" must be one with the "Me," that is, He must be God, "before" whom John was sent. As the divinity of the Son and His oneness with the Father are thus proved, so the distinctness of personality is proved by "I send" and He "shall come," as distinguished from one another. He also comes to the temple as "His temple": marking His divine lordship over it, as contrasted with all creatures, who are but "servants in" it (Hag 2:7; Heb 3:2, 5, 6).

whom ye seek … whom ye delight in—(see on [1194]Mal 2:17). At His first coming they "sought" and "delighted in" the hope of a temporal Saviour: not in what He then was. In the case of those whom Malachi in his time addresses, "whom ye seek … delight in," is ironical. They unbelievingly asked, When will He come at last? Mal 2:17, "Where is the God of judgment" (Isa 5:19; Am 5:18; 2Pe 3:3, 4)? In the case of the godly, the desire for Messiah was sincere (Lu 2:25, 28). He is called "Angel of God's presence" (Isa 63:9), also Angel of Jehovah. Compare His appearances to Abraham (Ge 18:1, 2, 17, 33), to Jacob (Ge 31:11; 48:15, 16), to Moses in the bush (Ex 3:2-6); He went before Israel as the Shekinah (Ex 14:19), and delivered the law at Sinai (Ac 7:38).

suddenly—This epithet marks the second coming, rather than the first; the earnest of that unexpected coming (Lu 12:38-46; Re 16:15) to judgment was given in the judicial expulsion of the money-changing profaners from the temple by Messiah (Mt 21:12, 13), where also as here He calls the temple His temple. Also in the destruction of Jerusalem, most unexpected by the Jews, who to the last deceived themselves with the expectation that Messiah would suddenly appear as a temporal Saviour. Compare the use of "suddenly" in Nu 12:4-10, where He appeared in wrath.

messenger of the covenant—namely, of the ancient covenant with Israel (Isa 63:9) and Abraham, in which the promise to the Gentiles is ultimately included (Ga 4:16, 17). The gospel at the first advent began with Israel, then embraced the Gentile world: so also it shall be at the second advent. All the manifestations of God in the Old Testament, the Shekinah and human appearances, were made in the person of the Divine Son (Ex 23:20, 21; Heb 11:26; 12:26). He was the messenger of the old covenant, as well as of the new.

Malachi 3:1 Additional Commentaries
Context
The Coming Day of Judgment
1"Behold, I am going to send My messenger, and he will clear the way before Me. And the Lord, whom you seek, will suddenly come to His temple; and the messenger of the covenant, in whom you delight, behold, He is coming," says the LORD of hosts. 2"But who can endure the day of His coming? And who can stand when He appears? For He is like a refiner's fire and like fullers' soap.…
Cross References
Matthew 11:10
This is the one about whom it is written: "'I will send my messenger ahead of you, who will prepare your way before you.'

Matthew 11:14
And if you are willing to accept it, he is the Elijah who was to come.

Mark 1:2
as it is written in Isaiah the prophet: "I will send my messenger ahead of you, who will prepare your way" --

Luke 1:76
And you, my child, will be called a prophet of the Most High; for you will go on before the Lord to prepare the way for him,

Luke 7:27
This is the one about whom it is written: "'I will send my messenger ahead of you, who will prepare your way before you.'

John 1:6
There was a man sent from God whose name was John.

John 1:7
He came as a witness to testify concerning that light, so that through him all might believe.

John 2:14
In the temple courts he found people selling cattle, sheep and doves, and others sitting at tables exchanging money.

Isaiah 40:3
A voice of one calling: "In the wilderness prepare the way for the LORD; make straight in the desert a highway for our God.

Isaiah 63:9
In all their distress he too was distressed, and the angel of his presence saved them. In his love and mercy he redeemed them; he lifted them up and carried them all the days of old.

Haggai 1:13
Then Haggai, the LORD's messenger, gave this message of the LORD to the people: "I am with you," declares the LORD.

Malachi 2:4
And you will know that I have sent you this warning so that my covenant with Levi may continue," says the LORD Almighty.
Treasury of Scripture

Behold, I will send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me: and the LORD, whom you seek, shall suddenly come to his temple, even the messenger of the covenant, whom you delight in: behold, he shall come, said the LORD of hosts.

I will.

Malachi 2:7 For the priest's lips should keep knowledge, and they should seek …

Malachi 4:5 Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the …

Matthew 11:10,11 For this is he, of whom it is written, Behold, I send my messenger …

Mark 1:2,3 As it is written in the prophets, Behold, I send my messenger before …

Luke 1:76 And you, child, shall be called the prophet of the Highest: for you …

Luke 7:26-28 But what went you out for to see? A prophet? Yes, I say to you, and …

John 1:6,7 There was a man sent from God, whose name was John…

and he.

Isaiah 40:3-5 The voice of him that cries in the wilderness, Prepare you the way …

Matthew 3:1-3 In those days came John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judaea…

Matthew 17:10-13 And his disciples asked him, saying, Why then say the scribes that …

Luke 1:16,17 And many of the children of Israel shall he turn to the Lord their God…

Luke 3:3-6 And he came into all the country about Jordan, preaching the baptism …

John 1:15-23,33,34 John bore witness of him, and cried, saying, This was he of whom …

John 3:28-30 You yourselves bear me witness, that I said, I am not the Christ, …

Acts 13:24,25 When John had first preached before his coming the baptism of repentance …

Acts 19:4 Then said Paul, John truly baptized with the baptism of repentance, …

and.

Psalm 110:1 The LORD said to my Lord, Sit you at my right hand, until I make …

Isaiah 7:14 Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin …

Isaiah 9:6 For to us a child is born, to us a son is given: and the government …

Haggai 2:7-9 And I will shake all nations, and the desire of all nations shall …

Luke 2:11,21-32,38,46 For to you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which …

Luke 7:19,20 And John calling to him two of his disciples sent them to Jesus, …

Luke 19:47 And he taught daily in the temple. But the chief priests and the …

John 2:14-16 And found in the temple those that sold oxen and sheep and doves, …

even.

Genesis 48:15,16 And he blessed Joseph, and said, God, before whom my fathers Abraham …

Exodus 23:20 Behold, I send an Angel before you, to keep you in the way, and to …

Isaiah 63:9 In all their affliction he was afflicted, and the angel of his presence …

Hosea 12:3-5 He took his brother by the heel in the womb, and by his strength …

Acts 7:38 This is he, that was in the church in the wilderness with the angel …

he shall come.

Haggai 2:7 And I will shake all nations, and the desire of all nations shall …

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