We should trust the Bible, says Timothy Paul Jones, because it is ‘grounded in the words of a man who died and rose again’ (p.111). Jones’s basic presupposition is this: ‘If we live in a world where it is possible…
- Publisher: Crossbooks Publishing
- ISBN: 978-1-4627-0619-8
- Pages: 148
- Price: 9.17
Malachi: A Prophet in Times of Despair
184 pages, £9.17
Star rating: 3 stars
Describing itself as ‘a devotional commentary’, the able pen of Baruch Maoz — using his own translation of the prophet Malachi — guides us carefully and honestly through the last book of the Old Testament.
The structure is simple. The prophet’s burden is broken down over six chapters, with each chapter divided into coherent sections and concluded with a summary of key points, a written prayer (drawing on Calvin’s prayers from his exposition of Malachi), and questions for discussion.
Over the course of the book, several threads emerge. One is the character of God, with his grace and love at the forefront, but equally not a God to be trifled with, but rather feared and reverenced. The implications for God’s enemies, and for his people — especially in the arena of worship — are made plain. There is also significant teaching on the matter of marriage.
Among the strengths of this short treatment are the clarity of the language and the forcefulness of the application. There is nothing overly technical here, making this an excellent volume for simple study and devotional reading, but the distinctness of the applications will make this profitable for the souls and sermons of preachers as well.
My main disappointment was that — especially in his consideration of the last two chapters of the prophet — the author kept very close to his brief, and did not really carry us forward into the fulfilment of Malachi’s prophecies in and around the life of our Lord. I am sure that there were good reasons for this, but ,for me at least, this would have added considerably to the profit of the volume.
Crawley, West Sussex