- An oracle. The word of the LORD to Israel through Malachi.
- I have loved you, says the LORD; but you say, "How have you loved us?"
- 1 Was not Esau Jacob's brother? says the LORD: yet I loved Jacob, but hated Esau; I made his mountains a waste, his heritage a desert for jackals.
- If Edom says, "We have been crushed but we will rebuild the ruins," Thus says the LORD of hosts: They indeed may build, but I will tear down, And they shall be called the land of guilt, the people with whom the LORD is angry forever.
- Your own eyes shall see it, and you will say, "Great is the LORD, even beyond the land of Israel."
- A son honors his father, and a servant fears his master; If then I am a father, where is the honor due to me? And if I am a master, where is the reverence due to me?-- So says the LORD of hosts to you, O priests, who despise his name. But you ask, "How have we despised your name?"
- By offering polluted food on my altar! Then you ask, "How have we polluted it?" By saying the table of the LORD may be slighted!
- 2 When you offer a blind animal for sacrifice, is this not evil? When you offer the lame or the sick, is it not evil? Present it to your governor; see if he will accept it, or welcome you, says the LORD of hosts.
- So now if you implore God for mercy on us, when you have done the like Will he welcome any of you? says the LORD of hosts.
- 3 Oh, that one among you would shut the temple gates to keep you from kindling fire on my altar in vain! I have no pleasure in you, says the LORD of hosts; neither will I accept any sacrifice from your hands,
- For from the rising of the sun, even to its setting, my name is great among the nations; And everywhere they bring sacrifice to my name, and a pure offering; For great is my name among the nations, says the LORD of hosts.
- But you behave profanely toward me by thinking the LORD'S table and its offering may be polluted, and its food slighted.
- You also say, "What a burden!" and you scorn it, says the LORD of hosts; You bring in what you seize, or the lame, or the sick; yes, you bring it as a sacrifice. Shall I accept it from your hands? says the LORD.
- Cursed is the deceiver, who has in his flock a male, but under his vow sacrifices to the LORD a gelding; For a great King am I, says the LORD of hosts, and my name will be feared among the nations.
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Footnotes1 [3-5] The thought passes from the person Esau to his descendants, Edom, and from the person Jacob to his descendants, Israel. Loved: preferred; hated: rejected; cf Genesis 25:21-23. St. Paul uses this passage as an example of God's freedom of choice in calling the Gentiles to the faith (Romans 9:13).
2 The offering in sacrifice of a lame, sick or blind animal was forbidden in the law (Lev 22:17-25; Deut 17:1).
3 [10-11] The imperfect sacrifices offered without sincerity by the people of Judah are displeasing to the Lord. He will rather be pleased with the offerings of the Gentile nations throughout the world (from the rising of the sun, even to its setting), which anticipate the pure offering to be sacrificed in messianic times, the universal Sacrifice of the Mass, as we are told by the Council of Trent.
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