As Haggai called Judah to work on the Temple,
so we are called to work on our Temple,
the Temple that is comprised of God’s people.
The symptom: Haggai 1:6, 9-11
Zerubbabel the governor was facing an economic crisis.
The problem – Haggai 1:2-4
Ask yourself what you are doing and why. In other words, there is a divine cause and effect going on. God is doing something in response to what they were doing.
What is it?
There are three negative factors at work:
• Work on His house is unnecessarily delayed.
• Work on their own houses has progressed to the point of luxury.
• The people’s motivation has gone to sleep.
It is significant that Haggai is not calling only the governor to task, but also the High Priest. This is a social problem and a spiritual one.
The solution – Haggai 1:8
The central point of this message of Haggai’s is repentance.
The response – Haggai 1:12, 14
• They recognized the voice of God
• The leaders were moved
• The hearts of the people were stirred
• And they obeyed
In the center of this response was a promise of God:
Then Haggai, the LORD’s messenger, gave this message of the LORD to the people: "I am with you," declares the LORD. (Haggai 1:13 TNIV)
What does this have to do with us?
Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and strangers, but fellow citizens with God’s people and also members of his household, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. (Ephesians 2:19-21 TNIV)
Just as in Haggai’s day, the foundation has been laid.
The Apostles and prophets have done their work. Jesus is the chief cornerstone. His work on the cross has taken the place of the altar that stood in Ezra’s temple. Peter builds on the same image:
As you come to him, the living Stone--rejected by human beings but chosen by God and precious to him you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. (1 Peter 2:4-5 TNIV)
The promise of Haggai is yours. When we determine in our hearts to make the Temple of God a priority, He promises to be with us.