Summary: The Lord is calling every believer to examine their lives and consider their service unto Him.

Consider Your Actions

Haggai 2: 10-19

Haggai had received and conveyed two messages from the Lord for the remnant that returned from Babylonian captivity. The first message was a challenge for the people to consider their ways. The second message from the Lord followed about a month later. This message was a challenge for them to consider their Lord. It has been about two months and Haggai received another message to share with the people. This message was in regard to their actions, their way of life, and involved their personal holiness before the Lord. If they were to prosper spiritually and enjoy the goodness of the Lord, the people would have to adapt a holy lifestyle before the Lord.

It has been over 2,500 years since Haggai conveyed this message from the Lord and things have not changed in our day. Our God is as holy and righteous today as He was then. His ways have not changed and they never will. If we are to prosper spiritually and enjoy the good hand of God upon our lives, we too must adapt a holy lifestyle before the Lord.

This is an attitude and behavior that requires resolve and commitment. We must pursue holiness on a daily basis. It isn’t impossible to live in a way that pleases the Lord, but it requires effort. It will never be obtained through a complacent, apathetic attitude. We must be willing to crucify the flesh and its sinful desires continually. 2 Cor.4:10-11 – Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body. [11] For we which live are alway delivered unto death for Jesus' sake, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our mortal flesh. Gal.6:7-8 – Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. [8] For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting. Let’s take a few minutes to examine the charges Haggai conveys as we think on the challenge to: Consider Your Actions.

I. A Word to Reveal (10-13) – God spoke through Haggai to reveal where the people were spiritually and to challenge them in their walk with Him. Notice:

A. The Audience (10-11) – In the four and twentieth day of the ninth month, in the second year of Darius, came the word of the LORD by Haggai the prophet, saying, [11] Thus saith the LORD of hosts; Ask now the priests concerning the law, saying…The Lord had spoken specifically to the priests regarding the law of God, the written Word. The previous addresses had spoken to the people at large, but this was reserved for the priests, those in positions of authority and influence. If anyone was expected to know the Word of God and follow Him, the priests certainly were. God knew the people would never rise above the spiritual level influenced by the priests.

Although this was given specifically to the priests in Haggai’s day, there is application for all believers. It presents a challenge especially to those in positions of leadership. We are now a priesthood of believers. Those who know the Word of God are without excuse. God has clearly defined what He expects of the church within His Word. We must heed the Word and obey its direction for our lives.

B. The Analysis (12-13) – If one bear holy flesh in the skirt of his garment, and with his skirt do touch bread, or pottage, or wine, or oil, or any meat, shall it be holy? And the priests answered and said, No. [13] Then said Haggai, If one that is unclean by a dead body touch any of these, shall it be unclean? And the priests answered and said, It shall be unclean. Haggai now asked a couple questions that reveal significant truth. The first question asked whether a person or object that was considered holy could make another person or object holy simply by mere contact. Could the holy piece of flesh make an ordinary piece of bread holy simply by touching it? The proper response was: No. This truth has not changed. Righteousness is never transferred by physical contact. We cannot share or convey our righteousness in Christ to another. This requires a personal relationship with Him. It also deals with the inadequacy of rituals and traditions to secure righteousness. This is obtained by grace through faith in Christ alone! Merely attending services at the Temple would not translate to holiness for them and religious activity will not for us either.

The second question asked whether an unclean object could defile something that was previously clean. The proper response here was: Yes. God had declared certain objects, animals, and people with certain conditions unclean. Anything that was dead would render one unclean if touched. The principle reveals that uncleanness could tarnish and hinder that which was considered clean previously. The priests were being cautioned to guard themselves from that which was considered unclean, lest they be defiled.

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