Israel had expected a revival of their nation after the exile, they were now disappointed.
The Messiah had still not arrived.
Israel was still under Persian rule.
They were still suffering.
A spiritual apathy swept over them.
The priests were burnt out, too tired to bring sacrifices.
God was questioned over why the wicked prosper.
God came to them through Malachi after which He would be silent for 400 years until the Messiah did come.
And God says a few words that every generation needs to hear and it was said in a continuous sense: I have loved you, I do love you, I will love you.
1. Your offerings have defiled me.
What you give to God is what you think of Him. Your revelation of God determines your offering of service to Him.
2. You are lighting useless fires.
The fire on the altar of sacrifice is for our lives not for our excitement.
3. You are bored of your duties, v13
The most miserable, joyless, alienated, tedious, irrelevant people can be Christians if they really work at it.
4. You have become a cheat.
Looking good is fairly easy.
A second however …
God says, I have a dream! v11
His name (Jesus) will be great and in every place of the world incense (prayer) and offerings (praise) will take place.
That dream is now a reality.
Jesus all over the world drawing people back to God through prayer and praise.
He is drawing you now. Calling you … Prayer and Praise … God’s dream for you.