Malachi 3:2
Parallel Verses
New International Version
But who can endure the day of his coming? Who can stand when he appears? For he will be like a refiner's fire or a launderer's soap.

New Living Translation
"But who will be able to endure it when he comes? Who will be able to stand and face him when he appears? For he will be like a blazing fire that refines metal, or like a strong soap that bleaches clothes.

English Standard Version
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.

New American Standard Bible
"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.

King James Bible
But who may abide the day of his coming? and who shall stand when he appeareth? for he is like a refiner's fire, and like fullers' soap:

Holman Christian Standard Bible
But who can endure the day of His coming? And who will be able to stand when He appears? For He will be like a refiner's fire and like cleansing lye.

International Standard Version
But who will survive the day when he comes? Or who can stand when he appears? Because he's like a refiner's fire and a launderer's soap,

NET Bible
Who can endure the day of his coming? Who can keep standing when he appears? For he will be like a refiner's fire, like a launderer's soap.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
But who will be able to endure the day he comes? Who will be able to survive on the day he appears? He is like a purifying fire and like a cleansing soap.

Jubilee Bible 2000
But who may abide the time of his coming? and who shall stand when he appears? for he shall be like a refiner's fire and like fullers' soap:

King James 2000 Bible
But who may endure the day of his coming? and who shall stand when he appears? for he is like a refiner's fire, and like fullers' soap:

American King James Version
But who may abide the day of his coming? and who shall stand when he appears? for he is like a refiner's fire, and like fullers' soap:

American Standard Version
But who can abide the day of his coming? and who shall stand when he appeareth? for he is like a refiner's fire, and like fuller's soap:

Douay-Rheims Bible
And who shall be able to think of the day of his coming? and who shall stand to see him? for he is like a refining fire, and like the fuller's herb:

Darby Bible Translation
But who shall endure the day of his coming? and who shall stand when he appeareth? For he will be like a refiner's fire, and like fullers' lye.

English Revised Version
But who may abide the day of his coming? and who shall stand when he appeareth? for he is like a refiner's fire, and like fullers' soap:

Webster's Bible Translation
But who may abide the day of his coming? and who shall stand when he appeareth? for he is like a refiner's fire, and like fuller's soap.

World English Bible
"But who can endure the day of his coming? And who will stand when he appears? For he is like a refiner's fire, and like launderer's soap;

Young's Literal Translation
And who is bearing the day of his coming? And who is standing in his appearing? For he is as fire of a refiner, And as soap of a fuller.
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 2. - Who may abide the day of his comings? They had expected him to come and judge the heathen; the prophet warns them that they themselves shall be first judged (comp. Amos 5:18). "Malachi, like John the Baptist, sees the future Judge in the present Saviour" (Wordsworth); Joel 2:11. Who shall stand! Who can stand up under the burden of this judgment? The Vulgate Version,Quis stabit ad videndum eum? points to the brightness of his presence, which eye of man cannot endure. Like a refiner's fire, which separates the precious metal from the refuse. So the Lord at his coming shall sever the good among men from the evil (Isaiah 1:25; Jeremiah 6:29; Zechariah 13:9). Like fullers' soap; Septuagint, ὡς ποιὰ πλυνόντων, "as the grass of washers;" Vulgate, quasi herba fullonum, What is to be understood exactly by the "soap" (borith), washing herb, is not known. Probably the ashes of some plant yielding a lye, like carbonate of soda, are meant. Such plants are met with on the shores of the Mediterranean and Dead Seas, and at this day large quantities of alkalies are extracted from them and exported in different directions (see Tristram, 'Nat. Hist. of the Bible,' p. 480, etc.; comp. Isaiah 4:4; Jeremiah 2:22). The Lord shall wash away all that is filthy (comp. Matthew 3:10, 12).

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

But who may abide the day of his coming?.... When he should be manifest in Israel, and come preaching the Gospel of the kingdom; who could bear the doctrines delivered by him, concerning his deity and equality with God the Father; concerning his character and mission as the Messiah, and his kingdom not being a temporal, but a spiritual one; concerning his giving his flesh for the life of the world, and eating that by faith; concerning distinguishing and efficacious grace; and all such that so severely struck at the wickedness of the Scribes and Pharisees, and their self-righteous principles; and especially since for judgment he came, that they might not see? nor could they bear the light of this glorious Sun of righteousness; and he came not to send peace and outward prosperity to the Jews, but a sword and division, John 9:39 very few indeed could bear his ministry, or the light of that day, it being so directly contrary to their principles and practices:

and who shall stand when he appeareth? in his kingdom and glory, to take vengeance on the Jews for their rejection of him and his Gospel; for this coming and appearance of his include all the time between his manifestation in the flesh and the destruction of Jerusalem; and so all those sorrows and distresses which went before it, or attended it, and were such as had never been from the creation of the world; and unless those times had been shortened, no flesh could have been saved; see Matthew 24:3,

for he is like a refiner's fire; partly by the ministry of the word, compared to fire, Jeremiah 23:29 separating pure doctrines from ones of dross; and partly by his fiery dispensations and judgments on the wicked Jews, when he distinguished and saved his own people from that untoward generation, and destroyed them:

and like fuller's soap; or "fuller's herb", as the Septuagint and Vulgate Latin versions render it, and Jarchi interprets it: and so R. Jonah (s) interprets it of an herb which fullers use: and in the Misna (t) this is one of the seven things used to take out spots, namely, "borith", the word here used; and which Maimonides (u) says is a plant known by the name of "algasul" and "gazul" in the Arabic language: it signifies something by which filth is washed away; and so Bartenora (w) says it is a plant which purifies and cleanses; and Jerom (x) relates that this herb grows in Palestine, in moist and green places, and has the same virtue as nitre to take away filth; agreeably to which some other versions render it "fuller's weed", or "soap weed" (y). The Syriac version is,

"as sulphur that makes white;''

and fullers, with the Romans, were wont to make use of that along with chalk to take out spots; and so Pliny (z) speaks of a kind of sulphur which fullers make use of. A metaphor signifying the same thing as before, the removing of spotted doctrines or spotted persons, the one by the preaching of the Gospel, the other by awful judgments, as spots in garments are removed by the fuller's herb or soap.

(s) Apud Kimchi in Sepher Shorash. rad. (t) Niddah. c. 9. sect. 6. (u) In Misn. ib. (w) In ib. (x) Comment. in Jer. ii. 22. (y) "ut lanaria fullonum", Drusius; "radicula, vel saponaria", Vatablus. (z) Nat. Hist. l. 35. c. 15.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

2. (Mal 4:1; Re 6:16, 17). The Messiah would come, not, as they expected, to flatter the theocratic nation's prejudices, but to subject their principles to the fiery test of His heart-searching truth (Mt 3:10-12), and to destroy Jerusalem and the theocracy after they had rejected Him. His mission is here regarded as a whole from the first to the second advent: the process of refining and separating the godly from the ungodly beginning during Christ's stay on earth, going on ever since, and about to continue till the final separation (Mt 25:31-46). The refining process, whereby a third of the Jews is refined as silver of its dross, while two-thirds perish, is described, Zec 13:8, 9 (compare Isa 1:25).

Malachi 3:2 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. 3"He will sit as a smelter and purifier of silver, and He will purify the sons of Levi and refine them like gold and silver, so that they may present to the LORD offerings in righteousness.…
Cross References
Matthew 3:10
The ax is already at the root of the trees, and every tree that does not produce good fruit will be cut down and thrown into the fire.

1 Corinthians 3:13
their work will be shown for what it is, because the Day will bring it to light. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test the quality of each person's work.

Revelation 6:17
For the great day of their wrath has come, and who can withstand it?"

1 Samuel 6:20
And the people of Beth Shemesh asked, "Who can stand in the presence of the LORD, this holy God? To whom will the ark go up from here?"

Psalm 76:7
It is you alone who are to be feared. Who can stand before you when you are angry?

Psalm 130:3
If you, LORD, kept a record of sins, Lord, who could stand?

Proverbs 25:4
Remove the dross from the silver, and a silversmith can produce a vessel;

Isaiah 33:14
The sinners in Zion are terrified; trembling grips the godless: "Who of us can dwell with the consuming fire? Who of us can dwell with everlasting burning?"

Ezekiel 22:14
Will your courage endure or your hands be strong in the day I deal with you? I the LORD have spoken, and I will do it.

Daniel 11:35
Some of the wise will stumble, so that they may be refined, purified and made spotless until the time of the end, for it will still come at the appointed time.

Joel 2:11
The LORD thunders at the head of his army; his forces are beyond number, and mighty is the army that obeys his command. The day of the LORD is great; it is dreadful. Who can endure it?

Nahum 1:6
Who can withstand his indignation? Who can endure his fierce anger? His wrath is poured out like fire; the rocks are shattered before him.

Zechariah 13:9
This third I will put into the fire; I will refine them like silver and test them like gold. They will call on my name and I will answer them; I will say, 'They are my people,' and they will say, 'The LORD is our God.'"

Malachi 4:1
"Surely the day is coming; it will burn like a furnace. All the arrogant and every evildoer will be stubble, and the day that is coming will set them on fire," says the LORD Almighty. "Not a root or a branch will be left to them.
Treasury of Scripture

But who may abide the day of his coming? and who shall stand when he appears? for he is like a refiner's fire, and like fullers' soap:

who may abide.

Malachi 4:1 For, behold, the day comes, that shall burn as an oven; and all the …

Amos 5:18-20 Woe to you that desire the day of the LORD! to what end is it for …

Matthew 3:7-12 But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees come to his baptism, …

Matthew 21:31-44 Whether of them two did the will of his father? They say to him, …

Matthew 23:13-35 But woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for you shut up …

Matthew 25:10 And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came; and they that were …

Luke 2:34 And Simeon blessed them, and said to Mary his mother, Behold, this …

Luke 3:9,17 And now also the ax is laid to the root of the trees: every tree …

Luke 7:23 And blessed is he, whoever shall not be offended in me.

Luke 11:37-47,52-54 And as he spoke, a certain Pharisee sought him to dine with him: …

Luke 21:36 Watch you therefore, and pray always, that you may be accounted worthy …

John 6:42-44 And they said, Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father …

John 8:41-48,55 You do the deeds of your father. Then said they to him, We be not …

John 9:39-41 And Jesus said, For judgment I am come into this world, that they …

John 15:22-24 If I had not come and spoken to them, they had not had sin: but now …

Acts 7:52-54 Which of the prophets have not your fathers persecuted? and they …

Romans 9:31-33 But Israel, which followed after the law of righteousness, has not …

Romans 11:5-10 Even so then at this present time also there is a remnant according …

Hebrews 10:28,29 He that despised Moses' law died without mercy under two or three witnesses…

Hebrews 12:25 See that you refuse not him that speaks. For if they escaped not …

1 Peter 2:7,8 To you therefore which believe he is precious: but to them which …

Revelation 1:6,7 And has made us kings and priests to God and his Father; to him be …

Revelation 6:17 For the great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand?

for.

Isaiah 4:4 When the Lord shall have washed away the filth of the daughters of Zion…

Zechariah 13:9 And I will bring the third part through the fire, and will refine …

Matthew 3:10-12 And now also the ax is laid to the root of the trees: therefore every …

1 Corinthians 3:13-15 Every man's work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare …

Revelation 2:23 And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall …

like fullers'.

Psalm 2:7 I will declare the decree: the LORD has said to me, You are my Son; …

Isaiah 1:18 Come now, and let us reason together, said the LORD: though your …

Jeremiah 2:22 For though you wash you with nitre, and take you much soap, yet your …

Mark 9:3 And his raiment became shining, exceeding white as snow; so as no …

Revelation 1:5 And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first …

Revelation 7:14 And I said to him, Sir, you know. And he said to me, These are they …

Revelation 19:8 And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, …

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