“And if ye offer the blind for sacrifice, is it not evil? and if ye offer the lame and sick, is it not evil? offer it now unto thy governor; will he be pleased with thee, or accept thy person? saith the LORD of hosts.”
The prophet Malachi was announcing to God’s people the wickedness that was present in their worship. Did they think it was acceptable to “offer the blind for sacrifice,” or what if they offered, “the lame and sick”? Malachi asked the same thing about both possibilities. “Is it not evil?” They knew that it would be wrong.
The Old Testament spoke clearly about what God would accept and what was not to be given to Him as an offering. For instance, Deuteronomy 15:21 says, “And if there be any blemish therein, as if it be lame, or blind, or have any ill blemish, thou shalt not sacrifice it unto the LORD thy God.” The sacrifice was to be as perfect as possible. God would not accept a sacrifice that was blemished. God wanted their best. For them to offer God something less than the best said something about their lack of devotion to God.
Malachi asked them a very piercing question, “offer it now unto thy governor; will he be pleased with thee, or accept thy person?” This brought their actions into clear view. They would never have considered offering such to a government leader. That would be disrespectful and inconsiderate of the honor that he deserved. Then why would they feel comfortable offering such to Almighty God? It was because their view of God was not what it should be. They were willing to offer God the blemished of the flock and assume that it would be accepted.
Obviously, we are no longer under the law of sacrifices and offerings that the Jews were to observe. However, the principle is as appropriate today as it was in Malachi’s day. We still offer sacrifices to God. We offer to Him the sacrifice of thanksgiving and praise, and the dedication of our lives. But, are we giving God our best? Do we sometimes give Him less than He deserves? It is an understandable part of worship that we should give God the best that we have. This is why He wants the first part of our week devoted to His worship and service, and the first part of our income given to Him as an offering. This is not simply for God’s benefit, but for ours. God knows that it is not good for us to give Him less than our best.