TEACHER: Ken Hicks
Haggai was called by God to take his message to God’s People around 520 B.C.. His name literally means My Holiday, this was about 16 years after the Jews had returned to Judah, a time when the work of Rebuilding the Temple had come to a complete stop!
God knew that sometimes His People need some Encouragement! Every Coach knows this!
And I think this Letter is different than most of the other Prophetic Letters in that it’s almost entirely composed of Encouraging Words that God sends to His People.
Both Haggai and Zechariah actually start exhorting the people, and breathing a fresh breath of life and hope into the lives of the people of Judah. God used them to literally awaken them from their place of Apathy … they had gotten so Lethargic … Tired … and Haggai brings this Word of Challenge from God to get them back to Re-Building the Temple.
Nehemiah was the man who helped the Israelites return to their homeland and rebuild the city wall. Haggai comes along after Nehemiah, the city wall is finished, and the people have even built the Foundation for the new Temple. Now … 16 years later … they get discouraged and give up on the New Temple in favor of trying to rebuilt their own lives.
God begins to ENCOURAGE His People … even if it doesn’t seem to start out that way … God begins there in verse 2 reminding them He’s aware of what’s happening right now.
They go to the Mountains, get the Lumber, and come back and start Re-Building the Temple!
In some ways, this seems like the END of the STORY. God tells them to do something … and they do it!
But things never really seem to be that Black & White do they? We don’t make things easy. In Chapter 2, the Judeans get upset because they don’t feel like what they’ve done is GOOD ENOUGH … and so God again sends a message through Haggai.
He makes 3 ENCOURAGING PROMISES to the People …
- FIRST … He reminds them of the Promise He made to their ancestors. He reminds them that He will be w/ them to fulfill the Promise He made to their Ancestors!
- SECOND … He … also in verse 5 … reminds them of the Promise the Holy Spirit will Remain w/ Them.
- THIRD … He PROMISES them that the Temple They Just Built would surpass that of King Solomon. NOTICE though it says … WILL BE greater … He doesn’t say IT’S ALREADY greater.
In the Fight of Life … we have to know …
- Who’s our Trainer/Coach … who’s that Person(s) who’s pointing us constantly in the direction of God’s Word and God’s Truth and God’s Promises to help us see life thru the Lens of God’s Mission in the World. Who’s that person for Us?
- Who’s our CUT-MAN … who’s that Person(s) who’s going to be a Trauma Team … that’s going to be there when we’re knocked to the Ground and just Love us enough to help Stop the Bleeding?
In the Fight of Life … for WHOM are we …
- … the Trainer/Coach … who’s that Person(s) that WE ARE pointing us constantly in the direction of God’s Word and God’s Truth and God’s Promises to help THEM see life thru the Lens of God’s Mission in the World. Who are WE that person for?
- … the CUT-MAN … who’s that Person(s) whom God us using US to be the Trauma Team … People to whom we have committed to be there when they’re knocked to the Ground and just Love THEM enough to help Stop the Bleeding?