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Malachi 1:4

4 Edom may say, “Though we have been crushed, we will rebuild the ruins.” But this is what the LORD Almighty says: “They may build, but I will demolish. They will be called the Wicked Land, a people always under the wrath of the LORD.

Read Malachi 1:4 Using Other Translations

Whereas Edom saith, We are impoverished, but we will return and build the desolate places; thus saith the LORD of hosts, They shall build, but I will throw down; and they shall call them, The border of wickedness, and, The people against whom the LORD hath indignation for ever.
If Edom says, "We are shattered but we will rebuild the ruins," the LORD of hosts says, "They may build, but I will tear down, and they will be called 'the wicked country,' and 'the people with whom the LORD is angry forever.'"
Esau’s descendants in Edom may say, “We have been shattered, but we will rebuild the ruins.” But the LORD of Heaven’s Armies replies, “They may try to rebuild, but I will demolish them again. Their country will be known as ‘The Land of Wickedness,’ and their people will be called ‘The People with Whom the LORD Is Forever Angry.’

What does Malachi 1:4 mean?

John Gill's Exposition of the Bible
Malachi 1:4

Whereas Edom saith, We are impoverished
Or the Idumeans, as the Targum; the posterity of Esau, who acknowledge themselves greatly reduced by the desolations made in their country, cities, towns, and houses, being plundered of all their valuable things. Kimchi interprets it, if the congregation of Edom should say, though we are become poor and low, and our land is laid waste: but we will return;
being now become rich, as the Targum adds; that is, as Jarchi explains it, with the spoils of Jerusalem: and build the desolate places:
as Israel did, as Kimchi observes, when they returned from their captivity; and so the Edomites hoped to do the same: thus saith the Lord of hosts, They shall build, but I will throw
down;
they attempted to build again their cities and towns, but could not succeed, God was against them: and they shall call them;
or, "they shall be called" F21; this shall be the name they, shall go by among men, by way of proverb and reproach: The border of wickedness;
a wicked kingdom and nation, from one end to the other; this shall be said of them, as the reason of their utter and perpetual desolation: and, The people against whom the Lord hath indignation for ever;
not for seventy years only, as against the Jews, ( Zechariah 1:12 ) , but forever; and these are now no more a people; they are utterly extinct; their name and nation are lost; there is not the least appearance of them; when the Jews, though they are scattered about in the world, yet they are still a people, and distinct from all others.


FOOTNOTES:

F21 (Mhl warqw) "et vocabuntur", V. L. Junius & Tremellius, Piscator, Drusius, Grotius.
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