Haydock Catholic Bible Commentary
My angel, viz., John the Baptist, the messenger of God, and forerunner of Christ. (Challoner) --- His purity and office procure him this title. (Worthington) --- Afterwards Christ himself shall come, for the ruin and for the resurrection of many, Luke ii. 34. Hence threats and promises are intermixed. The evangelists read his face, making the Father speak, whereas the Son is introduced by the prophet, who however presently changes the person. It is all the same which person of the blessed Trinity speaks, as all act together. (Calmet) --- Testament. The Messias, the mediator of the covenant with mankind, (Worthington) with Abraham, and Moses. The latter calls him the prophet; (Deuteronomy xviii. 18.) and Zacharias, alluding to this text, explains angel in the same sense, Luke i. 76. --- Temple. The ancient Jews were convinced that the Messias would come to the temple of Zorobabel, and be its chief glory, Aggeus ii. 8. (Calmet) --- Their descendants put off the coming for some long time, though the prophet says presently, or on a sudden. (St. Jerome; Basnage vi. 26.) --- Some take this temple to be the womb of the bless Virgin [Mary]. (St. Cyril; St. Augustine, City of God xviii. 35.) (Calmet) --- The Baptist was conceived, born, and preached first; and shortly after Christ appeared. (Worthington)
Coming. This may be explained of [John] the Baptist, (Luke iii. 7.) or of the second coming of Christ; though his first coming shewed the hypocrisy of the Jews. They would not acknowledge him, but sought his death, and brought on their own condemnation. (Calmet) --- Fuller's. Septuagint, "washers' herb." Borith is found in all the low places of Palestine, (St. Jerome) and probably denotes soda, (Jeremias ii. 22.; Calmet) or fullers' earth. (Haydock) --- Christ purified the religion of the Jews, or did what was requisite for that purpose. The people would not obey. Yet he established his Church in all purity.
Justice. This is spoken of the Christian priesthood, which far excels that of Levi, Hebrews v., and vii., &c. (Calmet) --- Many Jewish priests embraced the gospel, Acts vi. 7. (Haydock)
Years. So in the mass we beg that God would receive the sacrifice, "as he received the presents of Abel." (Menochius)
Judgment. He has answered (ver. 1, 2) the complaint of the Jews, chap. ii. 17. (Haydock) --- This he does here (Menochius) more pointedly. (Haydock) --- Christ condemned the world, as his spirit did likewise, John xvi. 8. He made an example of Jerusalem, which shewed that he would not leave crimes unpunished. We may also understand this of his last coming. (Calmet) --- God threatens to punish even secret sins, which are know to him alone. (Worthington)
Change. Hebrew also, (Haydock) "hate or recommence." I do not strike the fallen. Did I spare Sennacherib? &c. Have I not protected the posterity of Jacob? How then can you say that I am indifferent about human affairs? (Calmet) --- Consumed. Septuagint, "you depart not from the sins of your fathers. You have rejected my," &c.
Afflict. Literally, "pierce." Septuagint, "supplant," (Haydock) or kick at, 1 Kings ii. 29. But the term applied to Heli is different. Here it signifies to nail or irritate. (Calmet) --- Tithes: the payment is most strictly commanded. (Worthington)
Want. Hebrew, "malediction." St. Jerome specifies the kind. (Calmet) --- Septuagint, "and you obstinately turn away your eyes, and supplant me," &c. (Haydock)
Heaven; copious showers. --- Blessing; fertility.
Devour; locusts and other vermin. (Menochius) --- Malachias came later than Aggeus, and probably speaks of a different famine, to which the Jews were exposed for neglecting to pay tithes. (Calmet) --- How many now work on holydays, as if all depended on their labour and not on God's blessing! (Haydock)
Vain. Murmuring against God is blasphemous and unsufferable. When the Jews were punished by famine, for neglecting to pay tithes, they laid the blame on God, as if he took more care of other nations which had abundance. (Worthington) --- Sorrowful: "humbled." Chaldean, "in mourning." (Junius) --- But is seems to denote downcast countenances, which our Saviour orders his disciples not to affect, Matthew vi. 16. (Calmet)
Proud. Septuagint, "strange." (Haydock) --- Z has been take for u. --- Built up: have a numerous family, (Calmet) and abundance. --- Tempted. Septuagint, "resisted."
Then. Grabe changes Greek: tauta, these things, into Greek: tote, then. The Septuagint make the pious express the former sentiments. (Haydock) --- David, Jeremias, &c., had experienced such anxiety, Psalm lxxii. 2. (Calmet) --- According to the Hebrew, &c., the just hearing such blasphemies, doubt not but God will mark them in the book (Haydock) of his justice, and punish them.
Possession; (peculium) the property of a slave. (Calmet) --- Such look upon the smallest things with eagerness. Hebrew segula, (Haydock) means some precious thing. (Calmet) --- Spare. Septuagint, "chose," &c. (Haydock)