The core of Malachi's covenantal imagination is shaped by his reflection on an authoritative collection of source texts in the Hebrew Bible. The mention of people, nations and places, Deuteronomic terminology, and rare words and unique word/root combinations exclusive to Malachi and only a few other texts encourages the book to be read in the context of received biblical traditions and texts.
The diversity of methodologies used previously to analyse Malachi has resulted in confusion about the significance of the inner-biblical connections in the book of Malachi, which Gibson clarifies. His reading frees the text of Malachi from being overburdened by too many “intertexts”, and allows its central message of covenant to arise with greater clarity and force. Gibson reveals how Malachi's connections to earlier source texts are neither random nor causal; rather, they have been strategically employed to inform and shape his central theme of covenant continuity and fidelity.