Metaphysical Bible Interpretation of Malachi Chapter 3
Metaphysically Interpreting Malachi 3:1-7
3:1Behold, I send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me: and the Lord, whom ye seek, will suddenly come to his temple; and the messenger of the covenant, whom ye desire, behold, he cometh, saith Jehovah of hosts. 3:2But who can abide the day of his coming? and who shall stand when he appeareth? for he is like a refiner's fire, and like fuller's soap: 3:3and he will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver, and he will purify the sons of Levi, and refine them as gold and silver; and they shall offer unto Jehovah offerings in righteousness. 3:4Then shall the offering of Judah and Jerusalem be pleasant unto Jehovah, as in the days of old, and as in ancient years.
3:5And I will come near to you to judgment; and I will be a swift witness against the sorcerers, and against the adulterers, and against the false swearers, and against those that oppress the hireling in his wages, the widow, and the fatherless, and that turn aside the sojourner from his right, and fear not me, saith Jehovah of hosts.
3:6For I, Jehovah, change not; therefore ye, O sons of Jacob, are not consumed. 3:7From the days of your fathers ye have turned aside from mine ordinances, and have not kept them. Return unto me, and I will return unto you, saith Jehovah of hosts. But ye say, Wherein shall we return?
March 25, 1928: Mal. 3:1-6
This is a review lesson, not specific interpretation, but based on the general idea given in Mal. 3:1-6.
Today we have a review. What has been the general theme of the lessons for this quarter? The lessons for this quarter have been about Jesus Christ and His seeking to awaken in His followers an understanding of the freeing power of Truth, to the end that they might realize the omnipresence of God – the kingdom of the heavens.
What was our first lesson about? Our first lesson was about “Two Baptisms.” It showed the necessity for cleansing the consciousness from error by denial (John’s baptism), that the Christ mind may be established (the coming of Jesus Christ, and His baptism by the Holy Spirit). Jesus Christ represents the spiritual mind, which is now coming into man's consciousness. One must be willing to give up all thoughts and activities that stand in the way of one's right relation to the higher, spiritual understanding and realization.
What changes in man follow the “Two Baptisms”? The cleansing of the mind and the inner conviction of the abiding compassion and restoring power of Being follow the advent of the Holy Spirit into consciousness; also it is followed by gain in spiritual authority and dominion over error. This authority of the new consciousness is represented in our second lesson by Jesus' casting a demon out of a man and by His healing Simon's wife's mother of a fever.
What has forgiveness to do with healing? The relation of forgiveness to healing was emphasized in our third lesson, which dealt with Jesus' return to Capernaum and His healing of a palsied man. Forgiveness is the erasing of the error cause of an inharmony; when the cause of a [two lines are unreadable].
What did Jesus teach in the fourth lesson? In the fourth lesson Jesus was dealing with the law. He healed on the Sabbath day, and the Jews charged Him with breaking the law of the Sabbath. Jesus, who always kept the spirit of the law, knew that it was lawful to do good on any day at any time. True laws are made for man's use and for his good; they are not made to be a stumblingblock or a burden. Man becomes free by mastering error within himself, entering into inner peace and rest, and thus keeping the spirit of the law of God.
What was the fifth lesson about? The fifth lesson was about the power of Truth to cleanse and redeem the consciousness. Great multitudes came to Jesus to he taught and healed, and “as many as touched him were made whole.” Our silent prayer was, “I mentally touch the Christ truth, and my consciousness is restored to harmony and wholeness.”
What was taught in lesson six? In our sixth lesson we found Jesus misunderstood and opposed. We called this lesson “Double-mindedness,” since its central theme was the inconsistency of attributing good acts to evil causes. Jesus had healed some persons of unclean spirits, and the Pharisees declared that He cast out devils by the help of Beelzebub, the prince of the devils. Jesus told them that a house divided against itself cannot stand. An evil tree cannot bring forth good fruit, or a good tree, evil fruit. Our lesson was that we must not believe in two powers (good and evil) if we wish our house (consciousness and body) to stand. We must abide in the truth that God is the only power and presence in our lives, that only the good is real and true.
What was the keynote of lesson seven? In our seventh lesson, Jesus gave some parables relating to the kingdom of God, which is within man. The keynote of these parables is that the kingdom of heaven is a state of mind. Jesus likened it to seed, and to the growth of seed when sown in the earth. The seed represents words of Truth sown in man's mind; it represents the steady, progressive unfoldment in soul and body that takes place when he lets the true seed of Spirit take root in his consciousness.
What was the name of lesson eight? We named the eighth lesson “Spiritual Mastery.” It dealt with Jesus' calming the tempest and healing a demoniac. From this lesson we learned that, through the power of the Christ Spirit within, we may have dominion over all error beliefs in mind and in body, and may gain harmony within and without. As we learn to equalize our forces consciously, we shall no longer have storms or violen[ce].
June 3, 1945: Mal. 3:1-3
What is understood by “my messenger,” who “shall prepare the way” before the Lord? Malachi (my messenger ) is not, strictly speaking a proper name. Malachi represents intellectual perception, which prepares the way for the coming of spiritual perception.
Must intellectual perception be developed over a long period before spiritual perception can dawn on the mind? No, the two may come almost simultaneously. John the Baptist, representing intellectual perception, was the forerunner of Jesus Christ, but the two were contemporaries. The work of John was begun only a short time before that of Jesus, and the two ministries overlapped.
Does spiritual perception come suddenly or gradually? It may come either way. If suddenly, (“the Lord, whom ye seek, will suddenly come to his temple”), the mind suddenly catches a glimpse of Truth and the person for an instant sees himself as he is in the sight of God and as he was meant to be in actuality. If gradually, the understanding operates to Truth by a natural process of growth.
What is the important thing in spiritual perception? That it shall be developed practically, without delay, to allow the law of increase to become operative. Unused understanding held in the mind grows latent and tends to drop out of consciousness altogether. Light is to show us the way we are to go.
Why is the ideal of the Christ compared in its action to refiner's fire and to soap? The Christ ideal removes all sense concepts of life, leaving Truth revealed in its purity, as soap removes soil from clothing and as fire removes the dross from silver. The ideal of perfection cleanses the mind of imperfection.
“He will purify the sons of Levi.” What is the meaning of this prophecy? The sons of Levi are the natural religious tendencies of the soul, not necessarily spiritual. The name Levi represents love, but love may remain on the physical or emotional level instead of rising to the spiritual. When the Christ ideal enters into the soul's natural religious tendencies it refines or spiritualizes them, until they rightly express the relationship of man to God.
June 27, 1948: Mal, 3:1-5
What is essential to an understanding of spiritual truth? A quickened conscience (represented in this lesson by Malachi, whose name means “my messenger”).
What is the inner meaning of the passage, “The Lord, whom ye seek, will suddenly come to his temple”? When the spiritual mind becomes active in us and we realize that our nature is akin to the divine, the Lord or divine Spirit comes into conscious possession of our body.
What is the “messenger of the covenant”? The conscience that is alive to the reaction of the law, whose possessor understands what will be the outcome of a given course of action.
Is the creative power of the spoken word always sufficient to fulfill it? When the word is spoken in the creative consciousness, it is fulfilled, unless it is later counteracted by other words that neutralize it.
Can we influence the course of future events by intelligent handling of the causes in which they originate? Yes. For example, by educating the youth of the land to a consciousness of peace and international understanding and amity, we can contribute to the future peace of the world and can foresee what the course of events will be.
How can we express the divine nature on a world-wide scale? By developing and expressing unerring judgment of the truth in local, national, and international matters. “I will come near to you by judgment.” The commandment, “Judge not, that ye be not judged”, refers to condemnation and adverse criticism, not to the exercise of reasoned judgment. Good judgment is always in order.
Transcribed by Lloyd Kinder on 11-06-2013