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INTRODUCTION & SUMMARY OF

ZECHARIAH & MALACHI

CURRENT SERIES

OVERVIEW OF ZECHARIAH

OVERVIEW OF MALACHI

Zechariah calls God’s people to return to Him (1:26) and promises the Spirit of God to encourage the weak and erring (4:6; 12:10). He lived 500 years before Christ, when the Persian King Darius ruled God’s people. God had punished the Jews 70 years for their sins. Now many were returning to their homeland to rebuild. The prophet exhorts them to continue immigrating, not to fear, and to live righteously.

The final book of the Old Testament is about the error of forgetting the love of God. When people forget God’s love, it affects their attitudes, home, and worship. With God's love and loyalty in doubt, sacred commitments no longer remain sacred. God sent Malachi to rouse the people from their spiritual stupor and to exhort them to return to the Living God.

BRANCH OF THE MESSIAH The Hebrew term translated as BRANCH (3:8; 6:12) here means “shoot” or “twig”. This is one title for the coming Messiah, the Branch who would “shoot” up from the royal stock of David, a dynasty that had been interrupted with the Babylonian exile (Is 11:1). Many of the prophets promised that a King from David's line would reign in righteousness (Jer. 23:5, 6) and as a priest would reestablished true worship of the Lord (6:12, 13). In His ministry, Jesus Christ fulfilled these predictions by taking on both a royal (see John 12;13-15; 1 Tim. 6:13-16) and a priestly role (see Heb 4:14).

But the book of Malachi reveals a people who question the reality of their sin and their faithfulness, a people hardened through and through. Thus the book ends on a poignant note, a confrontation between a disappointed God and a disappointed people. In a sense, the Book of Malachi shows that the Old Testament comes to a chasm, with the bickering voices of the people on one side and the stern warning of God on the other. Only the Lord Himself could provide a way out of this impasse. Malachi looks forward to this deliverance, for he speaks of the one who would prepare the way for the Messiah. The promised Messiah was the only One who could bridge the widening chasm between the people and their God.

VERSES CONCERNING THE MESSIAH KEY VERSE “See, your king comes to you, righteous and having salvation, gentle and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey. He will proclaim peace to the nations. His rule will extend from sea to sea and from the River to the ends of the earth.” Zechariah 9:9-10

“See, I will send my messenger, who will prepare the way before me. Then suddenly the Lord you are seeking will come to his temple. . . the sun of righteousness will rise with healing in its wings; . . . He will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver; he will purify the Levites and refine them like gold and silver. Then the LORD will have men who will bring offerings in righteousness.” Malachi 3:1,3 4:2)

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APPLICATION

What does this tell us about humanity?

Three basic questions form this section.

What do these books tell us about God? Both of these books give us a picture of God as the one wooing His people back to Him. Knowing the depravity of their hearts, God is setting the stage through these prophets for the coming of His Son, Jesus the Messiah.

We see in these books a people who in general question God’s love and grace. Though He has come through for them on countless occasions and forgiven them. They forget all that He has donw and promised that He would do.

How do we apply this to our lives? In the people of Israel, we see a picture of ourselves. We doubt God’s love and grace again and again. Even though He has come through on countless occasions, we still doubt that He is there and working in our lives. Most of the time it is because we have taken our lives back into our own hands and not acknowledged His sovereignty over our lives.

WHAT IS MY STORY? (THOUGHTS):

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ZECHARIAH & MALACHI DEEPER SHEET