Malachi 4:4-6 (HCSB)
“Remember the instruction of Moses My servant, the statutes and ordinances I commanded him at Horeb for all Israel. Look, I am going to send you Elijah the prophet before the great and awesome Day of the LORD comes. And he will turn the hearts of fathers to their children and the hearts of children to their fathers. Otherwise, I will come and strike the land with a curse.”
These are the final words of the Old Testament. God warns His people that He will… “come and strike the land with a curse,” unless the proclamations of “Elijah will turn the hearts of fathers to their children and the hearts of children to their fathers.”
I had never really sat and thought about how God ends the Old Testament by emphasizing the importance of the family dynamic. You would think that God would highlight loyalty to Him, but He doesn’t. Instead, the Holy Spirit inspires Malachi to close the Old Testament cannon by honing in on the relational aspect between fathers and children; and that something in the future would be different between them (in their hearts), by what will be proclaimed to them.
What does this indicate?
It indicates that the relationship of the family is of utmost importance to God, that it has been compromised, and that it needs to be healed. It also indicates that it is only through the proclamation of God’s Word that such change can occur.
I’ll leave you with these encouraging words that Paul wrote to the churches in both Colossae and Laodicea…
Colossians 3:20-21 (HCSB)
Children, obey your parents in everything, for this pleases the Lord. Fathers, do not exasperate your children, so they won’t become discouraged.
Godspeed, to the brethren!