Daily Archives: August 3, 2019
We’re on a tour of the minor prophets for the rest of the summer: Joel, Amos, Obadiah, Jonah, Micah, Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah, Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi. You can join our study by reading today’s scripture below and journaling about it using SOAP (click on the “What’s SOAP?” link above to learn more). Below today’s scripture is an example SOAP from our team. Whether it’s your first time reading the Bible or you’ve been doing daily devotions for decades, God will use this One Thing to speak to you. We love hearing from you! Please use the comment section of our website to share your SOAP, thoughts or questions on the reading, or prayer requests. Join us as we build unity and community through God’s Word!
Haggai’s message came after the exile of God’s people and gave them reassurance and hope for their future.
1 on the twenty-first day of the seventh month, the word of the Lord came through the prophet Haggai: 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. Ask them, 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? 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. 5 ‘This is what I covenanted with you when you came out of Egypt. And my Spirit remains among you. Do not fear.’
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. 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. 8 ‘The silver is mine and the gold is mine,’ declares the Lord Almighty. 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.”
Blessings for a Defiled People
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: 11 “This is what the Lord Almighty says: ‘Ask the priests what the law says: 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.”
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.”
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.
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. 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. 17 I struck all the work of your hands with blight, mildew and hail, yet you did not return to me,’ declares the Lord. 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: 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.’”
Zerubbabel the Lord’s Signet Ring
20 The word of the Lord came to Haggai a second time on the twenty-fourth day of the month: 21 “Tell Zerubbabel governor of Judah that I am going to shake the heavens and the earth. 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.
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.”
What Are We Building? | Kathy Page
I love these scriptures! As work resumed on the Temple, the old timers who remembered the great and glorious Temple of Solomon grew discouraged and disappointed because there was no way this new building would match the splendor of the previous one. There was no way this tired, tattered remnant could replicate the splendor of Solomon’s Temple. They were building a functional building; it wasn’t lined with gold or silver or marble. BUT, what does the Lord say (vv4-5). Be strong! Work! For I am with you! My Spirit remains among you. Do not fear. In other words, you may not be able to build a palace, but you will be able to enjoy a Presence. It may not be overlaid in gold, or dazzling with silver, but it can be filled with My Spirit. Then God told them this house they were building would be more glorious than Solomon’s Temple. God wanted them to rise up out of their discouragement and trust Him. This called for faith – the people had to believe God over what they saw; they had to trust God’s word about their work. They needed to trade in their perspective of work for God’s perspective about their work
Just as the Jews in Haggai’s day could not grasp or fathom what they were building, we do not fully grasp the glory of our work in building the church. You build more than you see. There are always obstacles to doing God’s will. Obstacles are not a sign that God’s will has changed, rather, they signal that we need new resolve and obedience to complete the task at hand. Be encouraged as you sacrifice for the building of God’s house. No matter what your gifts, your function in the body, or the fruit you see with your eyes, the church we are together building with Jesus will shine forever with the glory of God. BE STRONG! WORK! I AM WITH YOU. FEAR NOT!
Father, sometimes we feel let down because we have pinned our hopes on temporary things instead of eternal realities. When disappointment sets in Father, help me to see this as a signal that tells me to pause and look at my priorities. The things of You never change, fade, turn cold or slip through our fingers – they never disappoint. In You and You alone we find the joy, fulfillment and satisfaction that we are looking for in every single thing. Keep my eyes on You, Father. In Jesus’ Name.
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