Summary: God listens carefully to those who esteem His name; they are His special possession.
The Day God Eavesdropped
13 "You have said harsh things against me," says the LORD. "Yet you ask, ’What have we said against you?’
14 "You have said, ’It is futile to serve God. What did we gain by carrying out his requirements and going about like mourners before the LORD Almighty?
15 But now we call the arrogant blessed. Certainly the evildoers prosper, and even those who challenge God escape.’"
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.
17 "They will be mine," says the LORD Almighty, "in the day when I make up my treasured possession. I will spare them, just as in compassion a man spares his son who serves him.
18 And you will again see the distinction between the righteous and the wicked, between those who serve God and those who do not.
AT THE TIME OF THE WRITING OF MALACHI, the nation of Israel had strayed far from God. Those were dark days indeed. Sin abounded. Unbelief prevailed. The majority of people went their own way, giving little thought to the will of God or the ways of God. They laughed at the prophets and showed utter contempt for the law of God.
Does all of this sound strikingly familiar?
But even in the midst of all this darkness, God had a remnant! He always does. He had a people who revered His name and sought to do His will. And as they saw the spiritual darkness of their day, they drew closer together for mutual support and encouragement. There were not many of them, but they were committed to remaining faithful to God, no matter what. They would meet in a secret place to encourage and cheer each other and find fellowship with one another—forerunners of the underground church.
WHAT SPECFICALLY WENT ON IN THOSE MEETINGS?
1. They TALKED about the Lord.
2. They THOUGHT about the Lord.
3. They SANG about the Lord.
Everything they said and did was built around the person of God. In verse 16 Malachi tells us how God reacted to all of this.
1. He GAVE ATTENTION to what was going on.
2. He LISTENED very carefully.
3. He EAVESDROPPED!
4. He STRAINED TO HEAR their conversation—like that of a parent listening to the noises of a new-born baby in the night.
5. He SHUSHED THE ANGELS that He might hear. He told David to stop playing his harp for a moment.
Have you ever eavesdropped on anyone—listening very carefully to hear what was being said? Sure you have! I remember listening to my parents discuss Christmas gifts as a little boy—straining to hear their conversation—through the register in my sister’s room.
In that darkened day, when a spiritual awakening was so needed, thanks be to God, a few people thought about God’s name. They talked about Him, revered Him, loved Him and met to discuss His wonderful ways. And as they did, God eavesdropped. He tuned in to their frequency. He strained to hear their remarks. It was like music to His ears.
Malachi tells us in verse 16 that the Lord enjoyed it so much that He had it written down in a book! That’s what the Lord does. He listens to our conversations, our prayers, our testimonies—and if they’re all about Him, He calls on an angel to take notes—to have a permanent record. And He delighted Himself with it. He writes down what was said and who said it!
The ears of God strained to hear what the remnant were saying. Kings were making edicts, but God was listening to His people. Generals were giving orders, but God was listening to a handful of folks praising Him. Judges were speaking in court, but God was listening to His remnant. Politicians were making speeches, but God was not listening to them; His ears were tuned to His faithful followers.
In verse 17, God is saying, “In that day when I make up my jewels, I’m going to remember that crowd and spare them.” The word jewel is the Hebrew word, “segula” and means “God’s very own special possession or treasure.”
Are you one of God’s segula? Is He paying special attention to what you say because your life is bound up in His? This is far more than just being saved—just being a Christian. There are Christians and then there are consecrated Christians whose sole aim in life is to do the will of God.
How does one become a part of God’s very own special treasure? Let’s look a little more carefully at this remnant.
1. They Remained True to God
It wasn’t easy to stay faithful to God. The days were dark. Corruption was everywhere. Hypocrisy abounded. Evil ruled the day. The same could be said of today. Its never been easy to follow God’s ways. But God always has a remnant.