By Henry Jaegers
I once heard a preacher say that every Old Testament book has a New Testament counterpart. That means simply, that the teachings of the Old Testament are compatible with the New Testament teachings and sometimes they are in direct harmony with other books. And as I began studying and writing books about the Bible, I agree with this statement. I think the book in the Bible that has more New Testament teachings that any other in the Old Testament, (it is strange for some to believe this,) but I think it is the book of Leviticus, probably the most ignored book in the Bible. (Although the book of Isaiah may have more references to the Messiah, the book of Leviticus has more in relation to the actual teaching surrounding the ministry and work of Christ as referenced clearly in the book of Hebrews)
The book of Malachi has also a New Testament counterpart found in the third chapter of Revelation in relation to the problems of the church at Laodicea. Perhaps the best way to describe the problem is by sharing two verses from it; “Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing, and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked: I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eye-salve, that thou mayest see. (Revelation 3:17, 18)
I have always been amazed at the great compassion that God showed toward this one church who appeared to be more corrupt than any of the others and followed by the tender invitation of "Behold I stand at the door and knock.”
The problem with Laodicea was with their eyes and once their eyes were opened and they saw the true condition before God as being “wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:
The problem in Malachi's time was that the people became corrupt because of the corruption of the priests. Although they have progressed somewhat from the former condition, they have managed to low the people to sleep into an orthodoxy that left them self-satisfied and in needy nothing, just like the church at Laodicea.
And as the title of our message states; the problem and the solution is that God just doesn't leave us with the problem and never giving us a way out. Just as anointing their eyes with eye-salve gave freedom to Laodicea, so Malachi was the eye-salve sent by God to open the blind eyes of these poor people locked into the problem of religious formalism. I like to call myself a cardboard Christian because that describes my life before I found Christ. Having the form outwardly but inside there was nothing but death and hopelessness and God came and sent his son to deliver us from that.
Who said there is no gospel in the Old Testament?