Sermon #5                                                                                                                      Malachi Sermons

 

      Title:                                 A Lead Pipe Cinch

 

      Text:                                 Malachi 1:6-11

      Subject:               The Honor of God

      Date:                                Sunday Evening — May 31, 2009

      Tape:                    Malachi #5

      Readings:          

      Introduction:

 

Let me begin my message tonight by telling you three things about preachers, three things about all true preachers. There are preachers all over the world today, plenty of them, way too many of them! There are, I suspect, more preachers today, in the United States alone, than there ever has been in the whole world prior to this day. We’ve got preachers everywhere. But there are some true God called, God sent, God anointed preachers, messengers of the Lord. And those men who are sent of God are concerned for three things.

 

1.    Faithful men, men called and sent of God, men who are the servants of God are concerned for the souls of their hearers.

 

They are not interested in your money, but your soul. They seek nothing from you, but seek the grace of God for you. They do not wish to be served by you, but earnestly desire to serve you. I’m not interested in your social status, but your spiritual well-being.

 

(2 Corinthians 4:1-7) “Therefore seeing we have this ministry, as we have received mercy, we faint not; (2) But have renounced the hidden things of dishonesty, not walking in craftiness, nor handling the word of God deceitfully; but by manifestation of the truth commending ourselves to every man’s conscience in the sight of God. (3) But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: (4) In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.

 

(5) For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesus’ sake.

 

(6) For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.

 

(7) But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.”

 

Faithful men are faithful to God, faithful to his Word and faithful to your souls. I prepare my messages and preach with fear and trembling, lest I say something contrary to the Gospel, or lead you contrary to the Revelation of god in his Word. I want, desperately and earnestly, to be true to the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ for the eternal well-being of your immortal souls.

 

2.    The man God has called and gifted and sent forth to preach the Gospel knows that he must preach the Gospel (1 Corinthians 9:16; 2:1-5).

 

The man God has called to preach the Gospel understands that the Gospel is the power of God unto salvation. He knows that God saves his elect by the foolishness of Gospel preaching, that faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God. So, when he preaches, he preaches the Gospel.

  • Ruin by the Fall
  • Redemption by the Blood
  • Regeneration by the Holy Spirit

 

(1 Corinthians 9:16) “For though I preach the gospel, I have nothing to glory of: for necessity is laid upon me; yea, woe is unto me, if I preach not the gospel!”

 

There is nothing for me to glory in, if I preach the Gospel. If I preach the gospel, I do so because God taught me the gospel, because God gave me the gift to preach the Gospel and because God gives me some hearers to whom I can preach. I have nothing of which to glory. Necessity is laid upon me. I must preach the Gospel. Woe is unto me if I don’t preach the Gospel! Gospel preachers just must preach the gospel. They just have to do it. They cannot be happy not preaching the Gospel. And they do it constantly, with simplicity.

 

(1 Corinthians 2:1-5) “And I, brethren, when I came to you, came not with excellency of speech or of wisdom, declaring unto you the testimony of God. (2) For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified. (3) And I was with you in weakness, and in fear, and in much trembling. (4) And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man’s wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power: (5) That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.”

 

First, God called men are concerned for your souls. Second, they are Gospel preachers. And…

 

3.    Third, faithful, God called men preach the Gospel for the glory of God.

 

That is their main concern in all their labors. The genuine concern is of every man, in every generation, who is called and sent forth of God to preach the Gospel is the glory of the Triune God.

Š      Faithful men have no interest in popularity. They are concerned for the glory of God.

Š      Faithful men do not seek possessions. They seek the glory of God.

Š      Faithful men are not about getting honor to their name, but about getting honor to God’s name.

Š      Faithful men do not seek to promote themselves. They seek to promote the glory of God.

 

Now, as I say, amidst all the hoards of self-seeking, self-promoting, self-serving, worthless preachers there are in this world, there are some true preachers. There are not a lot of them, but there are some. And those men will be found proclaiming and seeking to make men and women know the greatness and glory of God. They will be found pressing upon their hearers the claims of the Triune God, pressing upon men the demands of God that men sanctify, honor and hallow his name as God.

 

That is exactly what we find the prophet Malachi doing in Malachi chapter 1, verses 6-11. Open your Bible to Malachi 1:6 and I will talk to you for a little while about A Lead Pipe Cinch. You will see why I chose that for the title of my message very shortly.

 

Honor God

 

First, in verse 6, the Prophet Malachi speaks for God to his people and tells us that we ought to honor God as our Father and fear (reverence) him as our Master.

 

(Malachi 1:6) “A son honoureth his father, and a servant his master: if then I be a father, where is mine honour? and if I be a master, where is my fear? saith the LORD of hosts unto you, O priests, that despise my name. And ye say, Wherein have we despised thy name?”

 

The LORD hath made all things for himself: yea, even the wicked for the day of evil” (Proverbs 16:4). — If the Lord God has made even the wicked to honor him in the Day of Judgment, how he ought to be honored by us, whom he has adopted as his own children!

 

If then I be a father, where is mine honour? and if I be a master, where is my fear? saith the LORD of hosts unto you, O priests, that despise my name.” — What strong words of reproof! Here, the Lord God appeals to the most common principles and laws of nature. Children honor their fathers and servants reverence their masters. How much more we ought to honor the Lord God as our Father and reverence the Triune Jehovah as our Master!

 

If then I be a father, where is mine honour? and if I be a master, where is my fear? saith the LORD of hosts unto you, O priests, that despise my name.” — May God the Holy Spirit brand this upon our hearts and minds, and by it separate us from the other herds of this world.

 

our Father and Our Master

 

The Lord God asks, “If I be a Father, Where is mine honor?” — Is he a Father? Of course he is, a Father like no other father. He is…

Š      The God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, — His Eternal Son — and our Everlasting Surety.

Š      The Father of All Creation: — Angels, — Men, — the Father of All as Our Creator.

Š      The Father of Mercies.

 

The Lord God was a Father to Israel, as a nation, as he was to no other nation. In that typical relationship, by which he shadowed forth his relationship to his elect in Christ, the Lord God stood as a Father to Israel, whom he adopted as his own.

 

O what honor he deserves as our Father! Lord God, give me grace to honor You as my Father! Forgive my shameful dishonor; and give me grace to honor You…

  • With a Heart of Love.
  • A Life of Devotion.
  • A Confident Faith.
  • A Spirit of Meekness.
  • And Implicit Obedience.

 

Read on. Next, he asks, “And if I be a Master, Where is my fear?” — The word “Master” is really a plural word. The Triune Jehovah is asking, — “If I (God the Father, God the Son and God the Spirit) am your Masters, Where is my Reverence?” Is He a master? Indeed, he is! — The Master of All Things! — The Master of All Men! — And Distinctly Our Master! If he is our Master, distinctly and personally, savingly and everlastingly our Master, how we ought to reverence him!

 

These questions are specifically asked of those men whom God took as his firstborn, the priests. — “If then I be a father, where is mine honour? and if I be a master, where is my fear? saith the LORD of hosts unto you, O priests, that despise my name.” Oh, how aggravating the sins of God’s priests are!

  • Certainly, the Prophet is addressing the priests of the Old Testament who were responsible to lead the people of God in the honor and reverence, worship and service of the Triune Jehovah, but who rather led them to despise him name.
  • But we who are made of God in Christ “a royal priesthood,” must apply these reproofs to ourselves. Let each priest in the house of God apply them, where needed and as needed, to himself.

 

When God reveals himself to us as Father, when he calls us to himself and adopts us into his family, giving us the Spirit of adoption, creating in us the blessed gift of faith in Christ, it is that we might honor him as our Father (Exodus 20:12; Ephesians 6:1-3; Galatians 4:4-6).

 

(Exodus 20:12) “Honour thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee.”

 

(Ephesians 6:1-3) “Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right. (2) Honour thy father and mother; which is the first commandment with promise; (3) That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth.”

 

(Galatians 4:4-6) “But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law, (5) To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons. (6) And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father.”

 

Š      To honor God as our Father is to have a childlike reverence for Him.

Š      It is to confidently depend upon him, minute by minute.

Š      It is to flee to Him at the first hint of danger.

Š      It is to take every need to Him.

Š      It is to be secure with Him as our Father.

Š      To honor God as my Father is to obey Him without question.

 

God’s Name Despised

 

Instead of honoring God as our Father and reverencing Him as our Master, we (His chosen people, His chosen priests) have terribly despised his name! God forgive us; but it is so! Perhaps you think I am being harsh and severe. Perhaps you immediately respond to that charge as Israel of old responded to it when Malachi made it. — “And ye say, Wherein have we despised Thy name?” God’s prophet answers in no uncertain terms. — The priests had turned what they called worshipping and serving God into a profitable business, and by example taught the people that God deserves no honor and no reverence. They did not refuse his worship altogether. They kept the name and kept up the practice; but instead of offering God that which was without spot and blemish, they offered him that which was worthless (vv. 7-8).

 

(Malachi 1:7-8) “Ye offer polluted bread upon mine altar; and ye say, Wherein have we polluted thee? In that ye say, The table of the LORD is contemptible. (8) And if ye offer the blind for sacrifice, is it not evil? and if ye offer the lame and sick, is it not evil? offer it now unto thy governor; will he be pleased with thee, or accept thy person? saith the LORD of hosts.”

 

The priests were offering polluted bread and maimed and diseased animals on God’s altar! The people who came to worship the Lord would bring the best of their beasts, and the priests, for their own profit, slipped in a worthless animal, and kept the valuable one for themselves. They had become so habituated to this piece of economical religion, that they saw no harm in it, and when they offered the lame and the sick and the blind for sacrifice they said to themselves, “That is not evil.”

 

So Malachi thrust these words into their ears, hoping to rouse their seared consciences. He says, “Take that diseased creature, with its mange and broken legs, that filthy thing you are not ashamed to lay on God’s altar, to your governor. See what he thinks of it.” But you think such worthless service is honoring to God!” — We ought never offer to God that which costs us nothing! To do so is to despise His name and make the table of the Lord contemptible.

 

But the prophet’s words are yet more piercing. It seems obvious to me that his spiritual eye is looking beyond the polluted sacrifices offered upon a material altar to another kind of polluted sacrifice, that which God calls “filthy rags.” The polluted bread and the blind and lamb sacrifices by which men most pollute God’s altar and show how they despise his name is that Pharisaical self-righteousness by which proud man attempts to supplant and overturn the righteousness of Christ. Everything offered without an eye to Christ is polluted. It is, in the language of the Prophet, lame and sick and blind. And as under the law, whatever was blemished was rejected, so in the Gospel, every offering except the one perfect offering of the Lord Jesus Christ is blemished and rejected. — “It must be perfect to be accepted!

 

A Gracious Call

 

Though man is so vile, though we pollute his altar, God is gracious still. Listen to this gracious call of the Lord’s Prophet to his erring people (v. 9).

 

(Malachi 1:9) “And now, I pray you, beseech God that he will be gracious unto us: this hath been by your means: will he regard your persons? saith the LORD of hosts.”

 

  • He may be gracious, though we are guilty.
  • He may receive us, though we have sinned so horribly.

 

The LORD is longsuffering, and of great mercy, forgiving iniquity and transgression” (Numbers 14:18). — “The LORD is gracious, and full of compassion; slow to anger, and of great mercy” (Psalms 145:8). — “And therefore will the LORD wait, that he may be gracious unto you, and therefore will he be exalted, that he may have mercy upon you: for the LORD is a God of judgment: blessed are all they that wait for him” (Isaiah 30:18).

 

(Psalms 130) “Out of the depths have I cried unto thee, O LORD. (2) Lord, hear my voice: let thine ears be attentive to the voice of my supplications. (3) If thou, LORD, shouldest mark iniquities, O Lord, who shall stand? (4) But there is forgiveness with thee, that thou mayest be feared. (5) I wait for the LORD, my soul doth wait, and in his word do I hope. (6) My soul waiteth for the Lord more than they that watch for the morning: I say, more than they that watch for the morning. (7) Let Israel hope in the LORD: for with the LORD there is mercy, and with him is plenteous redemption. (8) And he shall redeem Israel from all his iniquities.”

 

Helps to Reverence

 

Malachi’s object here is not merely to scold, but to correct. He wants us to honor God, to honor Him as our Father and reverence Him as our Master. He does so by calling our attention to the great majesty of our God in three distinct ways. Malachi begins this short paragraph in verse 6 by showing us that God is our Father and our Master, and then devotes the rest of the paragraph to showing us that the Lord our God is so majestic in authority and self-sufficiency and universality as God our Father that it is only reasonable for us to honor Him as our Father and reverence Him as our Master.

 

First, the Prophet repeatedly calls him “the LORD of Hosts” (vv. 6, 8, 9, 10, 11).

  • Verse 6 — “And if I be a master, where is my fear? saith the LORD of hosts.”
  • Verse 8 — “Will he be pleased with thee or accept thy person? saith the LORD of hosts.”
  • Verse 9 — “Will he regard your persons? saith the LORD of hosts.”
  • Verse 10 — “I have no pleasure in you, saith the LORD of hosts.”
  • Verse 11, “My name is great among the heathen, saith the LORD of hosts.”

 

“Hosts” means multitudes of armies or angels or stars. So what Malachi wants us to see and feel is that our Father in heaven has infinite authority in all the universe. He can order any and every army on the earth and in heaven above to accomplish his purposes among the nations, whether they know it or not. He has myriads of unstoppable angels who do his bidding perfectly and never fail in their errands. And he has appointed every star in the universe its position. He holds them in place — all of them — and calls them all by name.

 

And on the altar of this Father the priests are offering animals with mange and broken legs! — On the altar of this Master men dare to offer the feces of their own righteousness!

 

Second, Malachi shows us that God our Father, the Almighty Creator and Master of the universe, needs nothing from us (v. 10).

 

(Malachi 1:10) “Who is there even among you that would shut the doors for nought? neither do ye kindle fire on mine altar for nought. I have no pleasure in you, saith the LORD of hosts, neither will I accept an offering at your hand.”

 

Men think they can put God in their debt. Vain man foolishly imagines that God needs him for something! But that is not the case. This 10th verse is really much stronger than our Authorized Version suggests. It might be read: — “Why doesn’t one of you just shut the Temple doors and lock them? Then none of you can get in and play at religion with this silly, empty-headed worship. No, I am not pleased. The Lord of hosts is not pleased. And I don’t want any more of this so-called worship!” — “Close the temple. I don’t want the smell of your sacrifices. I don’t need the food of your sacrifices.” He who owns all things needs nothing! He doesn’t need us. We need Him!

 

(Psalms 50:9-12) “I will take no bullock out of thy house, nor he goats out of thy folds. (10) For every beast of the forest is mine, and the cattle upon a thousand hills. (11) I know all the fowls of the mountains: and the wild beasts of the field are mine. (12) If I were hungry, I would not tell thee: for the world is mine, and the fulness thereof.”

 

He “is worshipped with men’s hands, as though he needed any thing, seeing he giveth to all life, and breath, and all things” (Acts 17:25).

 

Our majestic Father owns every square foot of this world. He has Creator rights to everything. This world is His.

 

This land is His land. This land is His land! —

From California to the New York Island, —

From the Red Wood forests to the Gulf Steam waters, —This land was made for God and for his Name.

 

And on the altar of this majestic Father the priests are offering animals with mange and broken legs! — On the altar of this Master men dare to offer the feces of their own righteousness!

 

A Lead Pipe Cinch

 

Finally, Malachi helps us get a sense of the majesty of God our Father, the Triune God, our Master, by showing us that some day his authority and his ownership, his dominion and his Lordship will be honored among all people and in every place. That is a lead pipe cinch.

 

You know what a cinch is. — Don’t you? A cinch is the strap that reaches under a horse’s belly, by which you tighten a saddle. The cinch (hopefully) keeps the saddle, and the rider, from falling off the horse, no matter how fast or rough the ride. A cinch is what those bull riders use to tighten around their hands and around the bull, by which they hope to hold on for the ride.

 

Well, in Malachi 1:11, God’s Prophet gives us a lead pipe cinch, a dead sure thing. He is saying, tighten down the saddle and hang on. — The ride may be rough, but God Almighty will be honored everywhere! Here is one of the most amazing and most exciting promises in all the Old Testament.

 

(Malachi 1:11) “For from the rising of the sun even unto the going down of the same my name shall be great among the Gentiles; and in every place incense shall be offered unto my name, and a pure offering: for my name shall be great among the heathen, saith the LORD of hosts.”

 

Š      Without question, this sweet promise is a prophecy of this blessed Gospel Day, assuring us that in every place in which human beings dwell the Gospel shall be preached and God’s elect shall be called (Psalm 11:3; Isa 2:3; 45:6; 56:7; 60:3-5; 66:19)

 

(Psalms 113:3) “From the rising of the sun unto the going down of the same the Lord’s name is to be praised.”

 

(Isaiah 2:3) “And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem.”

 

(Isaiah 45:6) “That they may know from the rising of the sun, and from the west, that there is none beside me. I am the LORD, and there is none else.”

 

(Isaiah 56:7) “Even them will I bring to my holy mountain, and make them joyful in my house of prayer: their burnt offerings and their sacrifices shall be accepted upon mine altar; for mine house shall be called an house of prayer for all people.”

 

(Isaiah 60:3-5) “And the Gentiles shall come to thy light, and kings to the brightness of thy rising. (4) Lift up thine eyes round about, and see: all they gather themselves together, they come to thee: thy sons shall come from far, and thy daughters shall be nursed at thy side. (5) Then thou shalt see, and flow together, and thine heart shall fear, and be enlarged; because the abundance of the sea shall be converted unto thee, the forces of the Gentiles shall come unto thee.”

 

(Isaiah 66:19) “And I will set a sign among them, and I will send those that escape of them unto the nations, to Tarshish, Pul, and Lud, that draw the bow, to Tubal, and Javan, to the isles afar off, that have not heard my fame, neither have seen my glory; and they shall declare my glory among the Gentiles.”

 

Š      But Malachi 1:11 reaches beyond this Gospel Day to that great end of all days, when time shall be no more and all God’s elect, out of every nook and cranny of this world have been saved by his free and sovereign grace in Christ Jesus, to the praise of his glory (Isaiah 66:20; Romans 11:26-27).

 

(Isaiah 66:20) “And they shall bring all your brethren for an offering unto the LORD out of all nations upon horses, and in chariots, and in litters, and upon mules, and upon swift beasts, to my holy mountain Jerusalem, saith the LORD, as the children of Israel bring an offering in a clean vessel into the house of the LORD.”

 

(Romans 11:26-27) “And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, There shall come out of Sion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob: (27) For this is my covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins.”

 

Turn to Isaiah 45 for just a minute, and I’ll wrap this up, giving you a reason to confidently trust him. We read earlier, “The Lord hath made all things for himself,” that is for the glory of His own great name. And when he gets done, He will have His great name glorified by all His creatures, everywhere. That’s a lead pipe cinch!

 

(Isaiah 45:20-25) “Assemble yourselves and come; draw near together, ye that are escaped of the nations: they have no knowledge that set up the wood of their graven image, and pray unto a god that cannot save. (21) Tell ye, and bring them near; yea, let them take counsel together: who hath declared this from ancient time? who hath told it from that time? have not I the LORD? and there is no God else beside me; a just God and a Saviour; there is none beside me. (22) Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else. (23) I have sworn by myself, the word is gone out of my mouth in righteousness, and shall not return, That unto me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall swear. (24) Surely, shall one say, in the LORD have I righteousness and strength: even to him shall men come; and all that are incensed against him shall be ashamed. (25) In the LORD shall all the seed of Israel be justified, and shall glory.”

 

When God gets done with this world, everybody is going to know who he is. God almighty raised up Pharaoh and destroyed him for the saving of his people, to make all men know who he is. When God was done, at the end of the day, everybody in Egypt as well as Israel knew who God is. They did not all know him; but they all knew who he is.

 

God raised up Cyrus to deliver Israel out of Babylon. He was a splendid type of Christ. But God raised him up to deliver Israel and to deliver them in a specific way, for the reason stated in verse 6. — “That they may know from the rising of the sun, and from the west, that there is none beside me. I am the LORD, and there is none else.”

 

Now, hear me. — God created, rules, and disposes of all things in the universe, for this one great reason, that everyone may know him and glorify him in the salvation of his people (Isaiah 45:7-18).

 

(Isaiah 45:7-18) “I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things. (8) Drop down, ye heavens, from above, and let the skies pour down righteousness: let the earth open, and let them bring forth salvation, and let righteousness spring up together; I the LORD have created it. (9) Woe unto him that striveth with his Maker! Let the potsherd strive with the potsherds of the earth. Shall the clay say to him that fashioneth it, What makest thou? or thy work, He hath no hands? (10) Woe unto him that saith unto his father, What begettest thou? or to the woman, What hast thou brought forth? (11) Thus saith the LORD, the Holy One of Israel, and his Maker, Ask me of things to come concerning my sons, and concerning the work of my hands command ye me. (12) I have made the earth, and created man upon it: I, even my hands, have stretched out the heavens, and all their host have I commanded. (13) I have raised him up in righteousness, and I will direct all his ways: he shall build my city, and he shall let go my captives, not for price nor reward, saith the LORD of hosts. (14) Thus saith the LORD, The labour of Egypt, and merchandise of Ethiopia and of the Sabeans, men of stature, shall come over unto thee, and they shall be thine: they shall come after thee; in chains they shall come over, and they shall fall down unto thee, they shall make supplication unto thee, saying, Surely God is in thee; and there is none else, there is no God. (15) Verily thou art a God that hidest thyself, O God of Israel, the Saviour. (16) They shall be ashamed, and also confounded, all of them: they shall go to confusion together that are makers of idols. (17) But Israel shall be saved in the LORD with an everlasting salvation: ye shall not be ashamed nor confounded world without end. (18) For thus saith the LORD that created the heavens; God himself that formed the earth and made it; he hath established it, he created it not in vain, he formed it to be inhabited: I am the LORD; and there is none else.”

 

That which he has purposed, he will do. Nothing in earth or in hell can prevent it, or even hinder it.

 

Our God is the God of purpose. He is accomplishing his purpose. Here the Lord God declares to the assembled angels and men before his august, sovereign and holy throne exactly what he is going to do. You can mark it down. — When God gets done with this world, these five things will be accomplished. God has bound himself with an oath to do them!

 

1.    Every knee shall bow to the Lord Jesus Christ, acknowledging him as Lord (Isa. 45:23; Phil. 2:8-11).

2.    The Lord Jesus Christ shall have a people to worship and serve him forever. — There shall be a people called out of this world who shall confess that Christ is all their righteousness and strength. — “Surely shall one say, in the Lord have I righteousness and strength” (v. 24).

3.    All God’s elect shall come to Christ. — “Surely shall one say, in the Lord have I righteousness and strength: even to him shall men come” (v. 24; John 6:37-40).

4.    Every rebel in the universe, both men and devils, will lick the dust before the throne of Christ in utter shame and confusion of face. – “Even to him shall men come; and all that are incensed against him shall be ashamed.” All will bow to Christ. Some will bow in repentance by the power of his grace, and some in terror before the throne of his holy justice; but all will bow!

5.    Every chosen sinner will be saved, and being saved by grace alone, they will all glory in the Lord forever (Rom. 11:36; Jer. 9:23-24; 1 Cor. 1:30-31). — “In the LORD shall all the seed of Israel be justified, and shall glory.”

 

(Romans 11:36) “For of him, and through him, and to him, are all things: to whom be glory for ever. Amen.”

 

(Jeremiah 9:23-24) “Thus saith the LORD, Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty man glory in his might, let not the rich man glory in his riches: (24) But let him that glorieth glory in this, that he understandeth and knoweth me, that I am the LORD which exercise lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness, in the earth: for in these things I delight, saith the LORD.”

 

(1 Corinthians 1:30-31) “But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption: (31) That, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord.”

 

For from the rising of the sun even unto the going down of the same my name shall be great among the Gentiles; and in every place incense shall be offered unto my name, and a pure offering: for my name shall be great among the heathen, saith the LORD of hosts” (Malachi 1:11). — What a blessed verse! What a sweet consolation! This sweet Scripture is like a stream in the desert. It is full of grace from beginning to end. It speaks of that glorious kingdom of grace, in the Lord Jesus Christ, the church of God’s elect, that is so extensive that it includes Jew and Gentile, and more. It includes some from everywhere!

 

The incense offered in every place is expressly said to be a pure offering, pointing to the Lord Jesus, whose one offering, once offered, perfected forever them that are sanctified. No offering but his could be pure; for even the prayers of the saints can only come up pure before God, in, and through Him, in the censer of his offering. (Revelation 8:4-5; Hebrews 10:14).

 

As if to give the greatest possible confirmation of this great promise, the Lord Jehovah twice affixes to the promise His own great name, assuring us that from east to west, in the great revolution of the sun’s power, through all the variations of the earth and of time, this blessing is absolute and certain. In every place where the people are found, some shall, by God’s free sovereign grace alone, be given everlasting salvation in the Lord Jesus Christ. Blessed, blessed forever be Jehovah, for Jesus Christ our Savior! Lord! Hasten thy kingdom, and fulfil this promise!

 

Then, and not until then, shall our Lord Jesus Christ stand up in the midst of glory, and say to all his creation, — “Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful. And he said unto me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely” (Revelation 21:5-6).

 

Amen.

 

 

 

Don Fortner

 

 

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