The prophet Malachi gives us the last recorded words we have from God before the 400-year period of silence begins between the Old and New Testaments. No more prophets, no more writings, and no word from God. Only 50,000 Jewish exiles returned to Judah after their captivity in Babylon. And with this last prophet’s words, God closes out the Old Testament history and prophecy.
“See, I am going to send My messenger, and he will clear the way before Me. Then the Lord you seek will suddenly come to His temple, the Messenger of the covenant you desire—see, He is coming,” says the Lord of Hosts.
The prophet Isaiah also confirmed this messenger, or forerunner to the Messiah.
The voice of one crying in the wilderness:
“Prepare the way of the Lord;
Make straight in the desert
A highway for our God.”
How were the people to know when the Messiah was to come, and how would they recognize him? Malachi said a messenger would come first to clear the way for the Messiah. He would be a witness, one to help prepare the way.
Four hundred years later, when all hope seemed lost, an unusual man named John the Baptist arrived on the scene. He lived in the desert wilderness and came preaching a unique message: “Repent, for the Kingdom of Heaven is near!” He was the forerunner to Christ.
“See, He is coming”, says the Lord of Hosts.
This Christmas season, may you feel the joy and anticipation of the Savior that is Jesus Christ.
* Merry Christmas *