The Lord Rebukes the Priests
1“And now, #ch. 1:6 O priests, #ver. 4this command is for you. 2#Lev. 26:14; See Deut. 28:15 If you will not listen, if you will not take it to heart to give honor to my name, says the Lord of hosts, then I will send #[ch. 3:9] the curse upon you and I will curse #[Ps. 69:22]your blessings. Indeed, I have already cursed them, because you do not lay it to heart. 3Behold, #[Joel 1:17; Hag. 2:17] I will rebuke your offspring,#2:3 Hebrew seed and #Nah. 3:6 spread dung on your faces, the #[Ex. 29:14]dung of your offerings, and you shall be taken away with it.#2:3 Or to it 4So shall you know that I have sent #ver. 1 this command to you, that #ver. 8; Num. 25:12, 13; Neh. 13:29; [Num. 3:45]my covenant with Levi may stand, says the Lord of hosts. 5My covenant with him was one of life and #See Isa. 54:10 peace, and I gave them to him. #[Lev. 16:2]It was a covenant of fear, and he feared me. He stood in awe of my name. 6#[Deut. 33:10] True instruction#2:6 Or law; also verses 7, 8, 9 was in his mouth, and no wrong was found on his lips. He walked with me in peace and uprightness, and he #[Dan. 12:3; James 5:20]turned many from iniquity. 7For #Deut. 17:9; See Lev. 10:11the lips of a priest should guard knowledge, and people#2:7 Hebrew they should seek instruction from his mouth, for he is the messenger of the Lord of hosts. 8But you have turned aside from the way. #[1 Sam. 2:17; Jer. 18:15; Ezek. 22:26] You have caused many to stumble by your instruction. You have corrupted #See ver. 4the covenant of Levi, says the Lord of hosts, 9and so #[1 Sam. 2:30] I make you despised and abased before all the people, inasmuch as you do not keep my ways but #Deut. 1:17; 16:19show partiality in your instruction.”
Judah Profaned the Covenant
10Have we not all #1 Cor. 8:6; Eph. 4:6 one Father? Has not #Acts 17:26 one God created us? Why then are we #[Isa. 21:2; 24:16; 33:1]faithless to one another, profaning the covenant of our fathers? 11Judah has been #[See ver. 10 above] faithless, and abomination has been committed in Israel and in Jerusalem. For #See Ezra 9:2Judah has profaned the sanctuary of the Lord, which he loves, and has married the daughter of a foreign god. 12May the Lord cut off from the tents of Jacob any descendant#2:12 Hebrew any who wakes and answers of the man who does this, who #[ch. 1:7]brings an offering to the Lord of hosts!
13And this second thing you do. #[Zech. 7:3]You cover the Lord’s altar with tears, with weeping and groaning because he no longer regards the offering or accepts it with favor from your hand. 14#[ch. 1:2] But you say, “Why does he not?” Because the Lord #ch. 3:5 was witness between you and the wife of your youth, #[ver. 11; Isa. 54:6] to whom #[See ver. 10 above]you have been faithless, though she is your companion and your wife by covenant. 15#Matt. 19:4, 5; See Gen. 2:24 Did he not make them one, with a portion of the Spirit in their union?#2:15 Hebrew in it And what was the one God#2:15 Hebrew the one seeking?#2:15 Or And not one has done this who has a portion of the Spirit. And what was that one seeking? #[Ezra 9:2] Godly offspring. So guard yourselves#2:15 Or So take care; also verse 16 in your spirit, and let none of you be #[See ver. 10 above]faithless to the wife of your youth. 16“For #Matt. 5:32; Mark 10:9, 11; Luke 16:18; 1 Cor. 7:10 the man who does not love his wife but divorces her,#2:16 Hebrew who hates and divorces says the Lord, the God of Israel, covers#2:16 Probable meaning (compare Septuagint and Deuteronomy 24:1–4); or “The Lord, the God of Israel, says that he hates divorce, and him who covers his garment with violence, says the Lord of hosts. So guard yourselves in your spirit, and #[See ver. 10 above]do not be faithless.”
The Messenger of the Lord
Isa. 43:24 You have wearied the Lord with your words. #[See ver. 14 above] But you say, “How have we wearied him?” #[ch. 3:15; Isa. 5:20] By saying, “Everyone who does evil is good in the sight of the Lord, and he delights in them.” Or by asking, #[ch. 3:1; 2 Pet. 3:4]“Where is the God of justice?”