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Series Theme: FRAMEWORKS: Haggai 1 & 2

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Introduction to Haggai

 

Haggai clearly ‘fits' in with the temple rebuilding observed in Ezra, where he is seen to be prophesying, presumably bringing these words. See Ezra 5:1, 6:14. Together with Zechariah he is clearly used by the Lord to motivate and encourage the returned exiles in their task of rebuilding the temple. Enemies has sought to put them off the rebuilding but God's word came with challenge, explanations and encouragements, and the work was restarted and taken on to completion. Here we see a classic illustration of the impact of prophecy to bring change to a present situation.

 

Contents:

1:1-15 Prophesy 1 (in 6th month) [also a supplementary short word in v.13]

2:1-9 Prophecy 2 (in 7th month)

2:10-19 Prophecy 3 (in 9th month)

2:20-23 Prophecy 4 (in th month (2nd )

 

 

 

FRAMEWORKS: Haggai 1: The First Prophecy

 

v.1 Prophecy through Haggai to Zerubbabel & Joshua

v.1  In the second year of King Darius, on the first day of the sixth month , the word of the LORD came through the prophet Haggai to Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and to Joshua son of Jozadak, the high priest: 

 

v.2 The Lord's complaint about the returned people

v.2  This is what the LORD Almighty says: “These people say, ‘The time has not yet come to rebuild the LORD's house.'

 

v.3,4 His challenge to them (1)

v.3  Then the word of the LORD came through the prophet Haggai: 

v.4  “Is it a time for you yourselves to be living in your paneled houses, while this house remains a ruin?” 

 

v.5-7 His challenge to them (2)

v.5  Now this is what the LORD Almighty says: “Give careful thought to your ways. 

v.6  You have planted much, but harvested little. You eat, but never have enough. You drink, but never have your fill. You put on clothes, but are not warm. You earn wages, only to put them in a purse with holes in it.” 

v.7  This is what the LORD Almighty says: “Give careful thought to your ways. 

 

v.8 His instruction

v.8  Go up into the mountains and bring down timber and build my house, so that I may take pleasure in it and be honored,” says the LORD. 

 

v.9-11 Why they have not prospered

v.9  “You expected much, but see, it turned out to be little. What you brought home, I blew away. Why?” declares the LORD Almighty. “Because of my house, which remains a ruin, while each of you is busy with your own house. 

v.10  Therefore, because of you the heavens have withheld their dew and the earth its crops. 

v.11  I called for a drought on the fields and the mountains, on the grain, the new wine, the olive oil and everything else the ground produces, on people and livestock, and on all the labor of your hands.” 

 

v.12 They accept the word and obey the Lord

v.12  Then Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel, Joshua son of Jozadak, the high priest, and the whole remnant of the people obeyed the voice of the LORD their God and the message of the prophet Haggai, because the LORD their God had sent him. And the people feared the LORD. 

 

v.13 A supplementary encouragement

v.13  Then Haggai, the LORD's messenger, gave this message of the LORD to the people: “I am with you,” declares the LORD. 

 

v.14,15 Thus the Lord stirs them to continue the rebuilding work

v.14  So the LORD stirred up the spirit of Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and the spirit of Joshua son of Jozadak, the high priest, and the spirit of the whole remnant of the people. They came and began to work on the house of the LORD Almighty, their God, 

v.15  on the twenty-fourth day of the sixth month.,

 

[Notes: The first prophecy comes through Haggai to the two leaders [v.1]. The people had slipped into a way of thinking – perhaps used it as an excuse to conform to the pressures of the enemy on them not to build – whereby they decided it was easier not to bother with the rebuilding [v.2]. The Lord [v.3] challenges them over this, that they are happy to have nice houses themselves while God's ‘house' still remains in ruins [v.4]. Rather than give a direct instruction to start rebuilding, the Lord asks them to face up to what had been happening [v.5-7] and realise that they lacked God's blessing. Then He comes with the ‘get on with the rebuilding' [v.8]. So, the Lord says, see the link between the absence of blessing and you not building [v.9-11]. The word gets through to them [v.12] and the Lord gives a further encouragement [v.13] and so all the people get stirred up and restart the building work [v.14,15]. The prophetic word has had its effect!]

 

 

FRAMEWORKS: Haggai 2: The Second, Third & Fourth Prophecies

 

v.1-9 The Second Prophecy

 

v.1,2 A second word through Haggai to these two leaders and the people

v.1  In the second year of King Darius on the twenty-first day of the seventh month , the word of the LORD came through the prophet Haggai: 

v.2  “Speak to Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, to Joshua son of Jozadak, the high priest, and to the remnant of the people.

 

v.2,3 The Lord asks them to remember back

Ask them, 

v.3  ‘Who of you is left who saw this house in its former glory? How does it look to you now? Does it not seem to you like nothing? 

 

v.4 The Lord commands them all to be strong

v.4  But now be strong, Zerubbabel ,' declares the LORD. ‘Be strong, Joshua son of Jozadak, the high priest. Be strong, all you people of the land,' declares the LORD, ‘and work. For I am with you,' declares the LORD Almighty. 

 

v.5 Remember you are a covenant people

v.5  ‘This is what I covenanted with you when you came out of Egypt. And my Spirit remains among you. Do not fear.'

 

v.6,7 The Lord will shake all things to bring glory to His house

v.6  “This is what the LORD Almighty says: ‘In a little while I will once more shake the heavens and the earth, the sea and the dry land. 

v.7  I will shake all nations, and what is desired by all nations will come, and I will fill this house with glory,' says the LORD Almighty. 

 

v.8,9 Everything belongs to the Lord

v.8  ‘The silver is mine and the gold is mine,' declares the LORD Almighty. 

v.9  ‘The glory of this present house will be greater than the glory of the former house,' says the LORD Almighty. ‘And in this place I will grant peace,' declares the LORD Almighty.” 

 

[Notes: Nearly two months have passed since the first prophecy [v1]. This word comes to leaders and the people [v.2]. The Lord asks them to compare what they have build so far with what the original temple had been like – not so good! [v.3] He calls on them all to be strong and [implied] not be put off by their enemies [v.4]. He is with them, He says, the same God who created them at the Exodus and has been with them ever since [v.5]. Then comes a big ‘out-of-time' word – He will come and shake the whole earth [v.6] and the peoples on it, so the end result will be His house filled with His glory [v.7]. [Is that ‘shaking' physical at the End, or spiritual when Christ comes?] Look, He adds, I own everything [v.8], all the resources are mine, so in the end the glory of this present house will be greater than that of Solomon's temple [v.9]. Now whether this refers to the mighty temple Herod eventually built, extending this one, or whether this word has a spiritual dimension that suggests His ‘house' means His people, so that the latter people (saved through Christ?) will be more glorious than the original people, is not specified.]

 

 

v.10-19 The Third Prophecy

 

v.10  On the twenty-fourth day of the ninth month , in the second year of Darius, the word of the LORD came to the prophet Haggai: 

v.11  “This is what the LORD Almighty says: ‘Ask the priests what the law says: 

v.12  If someone carries consecrated meat in the fold of their garment, and that fold touches some bread or stew, some wine, olive oil or other food, does it become consecrated?'” The priests answered, “No.” 

v.13  Then Haggai said, “If a person defiled by contact with a dead body touches one of these things, does it become defiled?” “Yes,” the priests replied, “it becomes defiled.” 

v.14  Then Haggai said, “‘So it is with this people and this nation in my sight,' declares the LORD. ‘Whatever they do and whatever they offer there is defiled. 

v.15  “‘Now give careful thought to this from this day on —consider how things were before one stone was laid on another in the LORD's temple. 

v.16  When anyone came to a heap of twenty measures, there were only ten. When anyone went to a wine vat to draw fifty measures, there were only twenty. 

v.17  I struck all the work of your hands with blight, mildew and hail, yet you did not return to me,' declares the LORD. 

v.18  ‘From this day on, from this twenty-fourth day of the ninth month, give careful thought to the day when the foundation of the LORD's temple was laid. Give careful thought: 

v.19  Is there yet any seed left in the barn? Until now, the vine and the fig tree, the pomegranate and the olive tree have not borne fruit. “‘From this day on I will bless you.'” 

 

[Notes: Two more months pass [v.10]. The Lord instructs that the priests consider what it means to be defiled [v.11-13] so they should realise that they as a people have become defiled [tarnished or sullied] by their outlook [v.14]. So, He continues, from now on think about this and realise why my blessing has been absent because of this [v.15-17] and thus there are shortages [v.18,19a], but from now on because [implied] of your obedience that will change [v.19b] A new hope.]

 

 

v.20-23 The Fourth Prophecy

 

v.20  The word of the LORD came to Haggai a second time on the twenty-fourth day of the month: 

v.21  “Tell Zerubbabel governor of Judah that I am going to shake the heavens and the earth. 

v.22  I will overturn royal thrones and shatter the power of the foreign kingdoms. I will overthrow chariots and their drivers; horses and their riders will fall, each by the sword of his brother. 

v.23  “‘On that day,' declares the LORD Almighty, ‘I will take you, my servant Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel,' declares the LORD, ‘and I will make you like my signet ring, for I have chosen you,' declares the LORD Almighty.”

 

[Notes: Latter on that same day [v.20], Haggai has an additional word but this time for the governor only [v.21]. The Lord will come and shake everything – heavens & earth, kingdoms and powers [v.22] and overthrow them. On that day Zerubbabel will have a new closeness to the Lord and a new authority [v.23]. A fresh encouragement for the governor. Whatever happens around him, he will be secure in God.]