"Look! I am sending my messenger to clear the way before me; and the Lord, whom you seek, will suddenly come to his temple. Yes, the messenger of the covenant, in whom you take such delight - look! Here he comes," says ADONAI-Tzva'ot.
But who can endure the day when he comes? Who can stand when he appears? For he will be like a refiner's fire, like the soapmaker's lye.
He will sit, testing and purifying the silver; he will purify the sons of Levi, refining them like gold and silver, so that they can bring offerings to ADONAI uprightly.
Then the offering of Y'hudah and Yerushalayim will be pleasing to ADONAI, as it was in the days of old, as in years gone by.
"Then I will approach you for judgment; and I will be quick to witness against sorcerers, adulterers and perjurers; against those who take advantage of wage-earners, widows and orphans; against those who rob the foreigner of his rights and don't fear me," says ADONAI-Tzva'ot.
"But because I, ADONAI, do not change, you sons of Ya'akov will not be destroyed.
Since the days of your forefathers you have turned from my laws and have not kept them. Return to me, and I will return to you," says ADONAI-Tzva'ot. "But you ask, 'In respect to what are we supposed to return?'
Can a person rob God? Yet you rob me. But you ask, 'How have we robbed you?' In tenths and voluntary contributions.
A curse is on you, on your whole nation, because you rob me.
Bring the whole tenth into the storehouse, so that there will be food in my house, and put me to the test," says ADONAI-Tzva'ot. "See if I won't open for you the floodgates of heaven and pour out for you a blessing far beyond your needs.
For your sakes I will forbid the devourer to destroy the yield from your soil; and your vine will not lose its fruit before harvest-time," says ADONAI-Tzva'ot.
"All nations will call you happy, for you will be a land of delights," says ADONAI-Tzva'ot.
"You have spoken strongly against me," says ADONAI. "Yet you say, 'How have we spoken against you?'
By saying, 'There is no point in serving God. What good is it to obey his orders or to walk about as mourners before ADONAI-Tzva'ot?
We consider the arrogant happy; also evildoers prosper; they put God to the test; nevertheless, they escape.'"
Then those who feared ADONAI spoke together; and ADONAI listened and heard. A record book was written in his presence for those who feared ADONAI and had respect for his name.
"They will be mine," says ADONAI-Tzva'ot, "on the day when I compose my own special treasure. I will spare them as a man spares his own son who serves him.
Then once again you will see the difference between the righteous and the wicked, between the person who serves God and one that doesn't serve him.