This week’s Pastor to Person was written by Pastor Caleb Beller.
[Mal 3:16 NIV] 16 Then those who feared the LORD talked with each other, and the LORD listened and heard. A scroll of remembrance was written in his presence concerning those who feared the LORD and honored his name.
Malachi was the last prophet to speak for the birth of Jesus some 400 years later. The people have returned from exile and again they have fallen back into their old ways. Amid the messages about God’s future judgment, God speaks to the faithful remanent who are struggling to hold fast in a decaying culture.
Three things that I see in the verse that can encourage us as we struggle with the world we live in today and seek to hold fast in this final chapter of God’s plan.
First, the people found strength in numbers. Those who feared the LORD talked with each other. Hebrews 10:25 reminds us of the importance of gathering together & encouraging each other as we near the return of the Lord.
Second, the Lord is paying attention to our gatherings. It says He listened and heard. He knew their struggles and heard their cries. Let us never believe the lie that God is unaware of uncaring of our circumstances. Our lives matter to Him and when we gather and share our hearts He listens.
Lastly, God says He knows individually those that are His. Those who have a relationship with Him and honor His name. Having your name on this list gives us assurance that our future is one of rejoicing (Mal 4:2) for those whose names are not on the list there is a sense of fear and judgment.
Proving your genealogy was critical for those who returned from exile. Whether receiving your inheritance or serving in the temple. Not being able to prove you belong meant no access. Just as the closing book of Revelation 21:27 says that access to into heaven is for those, “whose names are written in the Lamb’s book of life,” if you have been “born-again” then your name is written in heaven.
Regardless of how unfair or confusing this world may seem, our hope and confidence is not in this life. Let us live with the assurance and focus of our heavenly home. Let us live like citizens of heaven. Have you put your trust in Jesus? Set your focus for 2022 on your heavenly home? Are you on the list? Is your family on the list? What is God calling you today to do about it! Looking forward to all the Lord wants to do in 2022 with you!