Thursday, May 31, 2018

Malachi vs. Ezra

I always assumed if someone in the Bible had a book of the Bible named after them, then they must be on God’s good side.  However, I’m just recently pondering the possibility that Ezra and Nehemiah could be bad and I’m now having trouble seeing it any other way. 

Ezra and Nehemiah returned later to Israel from Babylon.  Nehemiah rebuilt the walls of Jerusalem but the second temple had already been rebuilt.  After arriving in Jerusalem they immediately deposed the high priestly lines of Joshua (Yeshua = Christ), son of Josedech, and governing lines of Zarubbabel.  

Ezra claims his justification for usurping authority was because some of the descendants of Joshua had married foreign wives.  It doesn’t say if the foreign wives had first converted unlike Solomon’s strange wives. Anyways it would have been a disqualification according to Lev 21:14. My feeling is the priest’s wives were proselytes/ converts but Ezra rejected them claiming they were “mud-bloods”. 

Ezra the scribe was given a lot of gold and commanded by Artaxerxes (not God) to establish the scribal rabbinical system among the Jews and enforce it.  It was these scribes and Pharisees that led the Jews away from Christ and to crucify their Messiah and their God. The truth of Jesus (without letters) was turned from glorious into offensive for the majority who trusted their Rabbi. Among the Jewish sects: Pharisees, Sadducees, Essenes, Zealots, Samaritans, Herodians, etc; all were wrong. Only John the Baptist pointed His few followers to the true Christ.

Artaxerxes (not God) decrees: 
Ezra 7:25 And thou, Ezra, after the wisdom of thy God, that is in thine hand, set magistrates and judges, which may judge all the people that are beyond the river, all such as know the laws of thy God; and teach ye them that know them not.
26 And whosoever will not do the law of thy God, and the law of the king, let judgment be executed speedily upon him, whether it be unto death, or to banishment, or to confiscation of goods, or to imprisonment.

How could mainstream Christianity adopt the same corrupt scholarly system of letters that led the Jews away from the true Christ? I do not object to scholarship but scholarship alone was never the basis for ecclesiastical authority.  True understanding of the Bible does not come from ecumenical creeds, great and spacious buildings, seminaries, institutes, divinity or theological degrees.  Truth does not come by letters but by the spirit of prophecy and ordination. (1 Tim 4:14, Matt 16:17)

So, LDS Christians do interpret the Bible differently than other Christian sects.  But LDS interpretation comes from revelation, from God’s ordained priesthood authority and not from evangelical seminaries. So, LDS interpretation may be different than you’re used too, but that doesn’t make it untrue.  LDS don’t take a limited number of verses out of the  Bible to formulate our doctrine. All the Bible speaks to us, and not just some of it.  

Malachi was a contemporary of Ezra, and some think Malachi (the messenger) was written by Ezra.  But I totally doubt that. Here is how we might know that Malachi was not written by Ezra but was instead critical of Ezra and Ezra’s newly appointed priests. Ezra ordered that those priests who had married foreign wives “put them away”.  However God via Malachi criticized both Ezra’s Rabbis and divorce by saying: 

Malachi 2: 11-16 Judah hath dealt treacherously, and an abomination is committed in Israel and in Jerusalem; for Judah hath profaned the holiness of the Lord which he loved, and hath married the daughter of a strange god. (irony) 
12 The Lord will cut off the man that doeth this, the master (rabbi) and the scholar, out of the tabernacles of Jacob, and him that offereth an offering unto the Lord of hosts.  .... 
16 For the Lord, the God of Israel, saith that he hateth putting away (divorce): for one covereth violence with his garment, saith the Lord of hosts: therefore take heed to your spirit, that ye deal not treacherously.

Most Jews will acknowledge that prophets ended with Ezra. When Israel accepted the scribal and rabbinical system set up by Ezra, God ceased to call prophets among Israel until John the Baptist. 

Here is what Christ thinks of Ezra’s scribes and Pharisees:
Matt 23:13 But woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering to go in.

Isaiah on the issue:
Isaiah 29: 13 Wherefore the Lord said, Forasmuch as this people draw near me with their mouth, and with their lips do honour me, but have removed their heart far from me, and their fear toward me is taught by the precept of men:
14 Therefore, behold, I will proceed to do a marvellous work among this people, even a marvellous work and a wonder: for the wisdom of their wise men shall perish, and the understanding of their prudent men shall be hid.

Mal 2:8 But ye (Ezra’s priests) are departed out of the way; ye have caused many to stumble at the law; ye have corrupted the covenant of Levi, saith the Lord of hosts.

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