Like a refiner of silver,Malachi 3:3
He will purify the descendants of Levi—
Until they are pure, unalloyed gold and silver.
Then they will draw near to the Eternal One,
Presenting offerings with righteous, clean hands.
God The Refiner
God’s chosen people had lived in the promise land for over 100 years. The temple was rebuilt and they were freed people waiting on the promise of the Messiah to come. It had been generations and generations since Moses and their descendants fled Egypt. These chosen people were waiting on the promise and how did they feel in their waiting?
The people had lost their zeal for God. They went through the motions of serving God but their hearts were far off. The men married pagan women and worshiped their gods, they divorced for no good reason, they offered sick and lame animals as their sacrifices to God, and they felt justified to be upset with God since “injustice was everywhere” (Malachi 2:17).
How does God respond to His chosen people, their actions and accusations?
He shows them the sin of their hearts. He directs them to look within. God is asking us this same thing today? Are we offering our best to God or are we giving Him our sick and tired? Do we feel justified in our lackluster faith because injustice is everywhere? Do we get angry with God when we see “bad” people prospering?
God offered a message of hope to these people and He brings a message of hope to you and me.
What does it mean to be put in the refiner’s fire? Listen to this quick video for some amazing insight on the process of purifying gold and silver.
God says I will purify my people SO THAT they can once again draw near to Me.
GOD IS THE REFINER
But the story doesn’t end here. God continues to speak Hope and Life into His people.
He speaks of the coming Messiah. He speaks of the Jesus. He speaks of the future hope that is found in our Savior.
But for you, the ones who tremble at the sound of My name, a warm sun of righteousness will come forth with healing in its rays, and you will go out, springing from the stalls like calves in open pasture. Then you will trample the criminal; your feet will make them ash on the day I am preparing. I, the Eternal, Commander of heavenly armies, promise thisMalachi 4:2-3
Brothers and sisters, there is freedom in knowing that God is the One who purifies us. It is not by our own abilities or work that we can become “presentable” to God. He is the refiner. It is by His love and grace for us that we are put in the refiners fire. This means that when we fall short (because we will fall short) God’s grace will redirect us towards Him once again.
I pray that if you are in the place of the people in the days of Malachi – Discontent, Far away from God – that you will open up your heart and allow God to place you in the refiner’s fire. There is no better place to be then with the Saviors loving hands and eyes directly on You, basking in the warmth of His righteousness.