Summary: Teaching of Gods covanent, Gods promise and the glory of his temple, the silver and gold are Gods and Gods alone, the blessings he brings to those who seek and love him and him alone

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Intro - History

Haggai means festival, feast, festive, I get the impression from reading this book that Haggai was the least scary of the OT prophets, a man with a heart of love, not condemning but trying to help the people truly find God and all his blessings for them. The prophet was most likely born in exile, in Babylon, were the Jewish people were held for a 70 year period before a group about 50,000 strong returned to Jerusalem led by Zerubbabel. Some commentaries say the 70 years reflects the fact that the Jewish people were in Israel 490 years after being brought there from Egypt and they nether observed a Sabbath year every seventh year as commanded by God, to let the land rest, as they lived under the law, then they owed 70 years exactly! God gave the land rest. The prophet dated his work precisely, a joy to historians and the like, so we know this was written 520 years BC. That’s it on the dates and figures, lets look at the message.

Haggai brought four messages to the returning Jewish exiles and to us, the are:

Message of Conviction and proprieties

Message of Courage and faith

Message of Cleanliness and holiness

Message of Covenant and promise

These messages were about faithfulness to God, how God wants his people to bless him and glorify him, not themselves and how God will lead us to holiness if we let him. This is not prosperity teachings its more if you please God he will bless you if you don’t he won’t, its also not about earning God’s favour more butting him first in our lives and letting God lead us rather than us trying to lead God

Message of Conviction and proprieties

Hands up those who think they are God! Not many takers there, but Haggai underlines this message with "Give careful thought to your ways” cause clearly the danger is that many do either consciously or sub-consciously thing that they are. Why well the people were in danger of forgetting God, turning to their ways and doings, missing God and his wants “These people say” does not necessarily translate to “So says the Lord”. They said the time has not come for us to rebuild the Lords temple, so we will get on with building our own dwellings, we will use all our good things to make our homes like palaces after all, we owe it to ourselves after all that exile and trauma time for a bit of ME worship. That’s not how it is today, eh, we don’t worship material things, covert the high def TV, the car, the house big enough to be a church, the clothes with the right labels and shall I go on. But that was then and God can provide for himself can’t he, we of course he can that’s not the point, it’s a time to open eyes, minds and hearts and know that God gave us all that we have and expects us to surrender it back freely with a glad heart. Then why give it, well it’s a heart thing, God wants us to be dependent on him and not things, to love him and not ourselves. That’s what Haggai was telling the Israelites

”Now this is what the LORD Almighty says: "Give careful thought to your ways. You have planted much, but have harvested little. You eat, but never have enough. You drink, but never have your fill. You put on clothes, but are not warm. You earn wages, only to put them in a purse with holes in it."

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