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Minor Prohets - Haggai

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An Overview of Haggai

 

Thesis:  To examine the emphasis upon working by noting the facts that God is with His

  people and will bless His people.

Introduction:

1.      Haggai’s name means “festival.”

2.      In Ezra 5.1-2, we learn that Haggai was a contemporary of the prophet Zechariah and that his message was given during the time of Zerubbabel’s work.

3.      Haggai himself dates the book according to the Gentile system of dating (1.1); therefore, the date of the book was 520 B.C.

4.      His message is: Get to Work!

5.      Have you ever gone through some hard times?  Have you ever felt as though everyone was against you? Have you ever felt as if you were all alone and opposition was coming against you from all areas of life?

6.      As a child, have you ever felt down and had your father come to you and say, “Son, I am here for you and I still love you?”

7.      God, through Haggai, said, “I’m still with you, you can do it!”

Discussion:

I.                   “Consider your ways” (1:1-15)

A.    The people were saying that the time had not come for them to build the Lord’s temple because of the opposition that they had faced (1:2).

1.      They had returned from captivity (538 BC – decree issued; 536 – returns).

2.      They had a job to do: Build the Temple.

3.      They had laid the foundation when opposition came against them.

4.      They had ceased work on the temple for 16 years because of this opposition.

5.      During the moment of Israel’s deepest despair, God Stepped in!

(EZRA 5:1; 520 BC)

B.     God, through Haggai, asked the people why they were neglecting the work that was set before them (1:3,4).

C.     God tells the people to consider their ways (“Consider” means “to think with one’s heart/mind upon”).

1.      Consider your ways: You’ve run to your houses and have neglected the work because of opposition, but is your life better (1:5,6)?

2.      Consider your ways: (1:7-11)

a.       I’ve not been blessing you because of your failure to work.

b.      You’ve stopped working because of opposition, but what are your oppressors doing for you now?

c.       Therefore, is forsaking the work of the Lord to be freed from the opposition and having God to bless you not better than working for God and enjoying the blessings connected with it?

D.    The people said that they would again work on the temple (1:12-15).

E.     God reassures the people by saying, “I am with you, saith the Lord (1:13).”

II.                “The glory of this latter house shall be greater than of the former” (2:1-9)

A.    Some of the people were upset because they thought that the glory of the new temple would not be as great as the glory of Solomon’s temple (2:3).

B.     God said that He was still with the people, and this statement should have been the true measure of the temple’s glory (2:4-5).

C.     The temple did not need material things to make it great because God alone would make it great by filling the temple with His glory (2:6-8).

D.    The temple also typified the church, but peace will always be found by one who has God with him (2:9).

III.             “From this day will I bless thee” (2:10-19)

A.    Haggai used principles from the Law to illustrate uncleanness (2:11-13).

B.     The people were unclean and so was their worship.  Why?  Their neglect of the duty (2:14).

C.     The lack of blessings should have caused them to open their eyes (2:15-17).

D.    They should have considered the changed conditions (2:18).

E.     God said, “Turn to me, and I will bless you (2:19).”  They had turned to God; thus, He confirms that He will bless them.

IV.             “For I have chosen thee” (2:20-23) 

A.    This message was addressed to Zerubbabel.

B.     God would fight for Zerubbabel and protect him because he was of the Davidic line; thus, Christ was to come through his seed (cf. II Sam. 7:12).

C.     Zerrubbabel is told that God is on his side.

D.    Israel then should have realized that they were the people through whom Christ would come; thus, this principle given to Zerrubbabel would be applicable to all Israel.

Conclusion:

1.      God is still saying, “I am with you and you can do it!”

2.      “Is it time for you, O ye, to dwell in your cieled houses, and this house lie waste?”

 

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