Wisconsin Lutheran Chapel logo

God’s Word for You

Malachi 4:3 under the soles of your feet

by Pastor Timothy Smith on Tuesday, May 11, 2021

3 You will trample the wicked. They will surely be ashes under the soles of your feet on the day when I take action, says the LORD of Armies. (EHV)

Like almost all of the prophets, Malachi moves back and forth between Christ’s first coming (Christmas) and his second coming (the end of the world/judgment day). Here the Lord is speaking to his Church. Part of the trampling is during our own lifetimes and part of it is the final judgment. The final part is “on the day when I take action,” the day when the wicked angels and the unbelievers will be utterly ruined and sent away into hell. No mythical legend of a bird rising from ashes will be any use to them. The reality of what happens to ashes will overtake them.

The trampling that takes place during our own lifetimes is the verbal activity of God’s people against heretics. Anyone who holds up a way to heaven apart from Christ must be opposed. He or she must have their error exposed so that people are not misled through our inactivity. When the Church’s silence could be understood to be agreement, the Church must speak. In a culture like the present one, where any negative speech is seen by some to be hateful and hurtful, we must take a stand for Christ and the truth for the sake of lost souls.

Lies are like graffiti. If they are left alone, they stand published. But when they appear, there is also another opportunity for the truth to be presented, painting over the lie, and proclaiming what is correct and saving doctrine once again. So don’t be distressed or hurt when the scribbled graffiti of Satan’s lies appears nearby. God is holding out a chair for you, opening a window through which you can speak; setting you on a rooftop from which to shout (Matthew 10:27). You can point people to Jesus, or you can support those who do.

If you cannot speak like angels,
If you cannot preach like Paul,
You can tell the love of Jesus,
You can say he died for all.
If you cannot rouse the wicked
With the Judgment’s dread alarms,
You can lead the little children
To the Savior’s waiting arms.

If you cannot be a watchman
Standing high on Zion’s wall,
Pointing out the path to heaven
Off’ring life and peace to all,
With your prayers and with your off’rings
You can do what God demands,
You can be like faithful Aaron,
Holding up the prophet’s hands.

(Christian Worship 573, “Hark! The Voice of Jesus Crying” verses 2-3)

In Christ,
Pastor Timothy Smith

Pastor Tim Smith

About Pastor Timothy Smith
Pastor Smith serves St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in New Ulm, Minnesota. To receive God’s Word for You via e-mail, please contact Pastor Smith.


Browse Devotion Archive