The verse is a warning of the coming judgment of God, and it is addressed to the people of Israel. The prophet Malachi is telling them that when the Messiah comes, he will be like a refiner’s fire or a launderer’s soap. In other words, he will be a purifying force, and those who are not able to stand up to his judgment will be destroyed.
The imagery of a refiner’s fire and a launderer’s soap is powerful and vivid. The refiner’s fire is used to purify precious metals by burning off impurities. The launderer’s soap is used to cleanse clothing by removing dirt and stains. In both cases, the result is something that is pure and clean.
The use of these metaphors suggests that the coming of the Messiah will not be a pleasant experience for everyone. Just as a precious metal is refined by being subjected to intense heat, so too will the people of Israel be purified by the coming judgment. And just as clothing is cleansed by being beaten and scrubbed, so too will the people of Israel be cleansed of their sins.
The verse also raises a question: who can endure the day of his coming? Who can stand when he appears? The implication is that only those who are pure and righteous will be able to stand before the Messiah without fear. This raises the question of how one can become pure and righteous in the eyes of God.
Throughout the Old Testament, there are many references to the need for the people of Israel to repent of their sins and turn back to God. This is a theme that is echoed in the New Testament as well, with John the Baptist calling on the people to repent in preparation for the coming of the Messiah.
The verse from Malachi suggests that the coming of the Messiah will be a time of judgment and purification. Those who are able to endure the fire and stand before the Messiah will be those who have repented of their sins and turned back to God. For everyone else, the judgment will be harsh and unforgiving.
In conclusion, Malachi 3:2 is a powerful and vivid verse that warns of the coming judgment of God. The verse uses the imagery of a refiner’s fire and a launderer’s soap to suggest that the coming of the Messiah will be a time of purification and judgment. Those who are able to stand before the Messiah will be those who have repented of their sins and turned back to God. For everyone else, the judgment will be harsh and unforgiving.
See also: vs 1
Malachi 3:2. Who can endure the day of his coming? And who will stand when he appears? For he is like a refiner’s fire, and like launderer’s soap.