1. Discuss as a group: “religious rituals do not replace spiritual devotion.” How does someone know if they are doing something out of habit or devotion? (vs 12b-13)
2. Define the word profane. How were the people profaning the “covenant of our fathers”? (vs 10) See Leviticus 19:18.
3. Why was God upset by Judah “marrying the daughter of a foreign god”? What were the consequences of this action? (vs 11-12) What about today? See Exodus 34:15-16.
4. In Malachi 2:15-16 the phrase “guard yourself in your spirit, and do not break faith” appears twice. In what ways can you guard yourself against possible unfaithfulness in your relationship with God? Your spouse? Your friends? Your church family?
5. The failure we see in verses 10-16 is a result of the failed leadership of the priests. How much of the responsibility falls on Judah for their own failure? What should they have been doing as they witnessed the changing priestly leadership?