Sermons

Summary: Returning to the vision God has given us.

Ezra 1:1 Now in the first year of Cyrus king of Persia, in order to fulfill the word of the LORD by the mouth of Jeremiah, the LORD stirred up the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia, so that he sent a proclamation throughout all his kingdom, and also put it in writing, saying,

2 "Thus says Cyrus king of Persia, ’The LORD, the God of heaven, has given me all the kingdoms of the earth, and He has appointed me to build Him a house in Jerusalem, which is in Judah.

3 ’Whoever there is among you of all His people, may his God be with him! Let him go up to Jerusalem which is in Judah, and rebuild the house of the LORD, the God of Israel; He is the God who is in Jerusalem.

4 ’And every survivor, at whatever place he may live, let the men of that place support him with silver and gold, with goods and cattle, together with a freewill offering for the house of God which is in Jerusalem.’ "

5 Then the heads of fathers’ households of Judah and Benjamin and the priests and the Levites arose, even everyone whose spirit God had stirred to go up and rebuild the house of the LORD which is in Jerusalem.

NAS Haggai 1:1 In the second year of Darius the king, on the first day of the sixth month, the word of the LORD came by the prophet Haggai to Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and to Joshua the son of Jehozadak, the high priest saying,

2 "Thus says the LORD of hosts, ’This people says," The time has not come, even the time for the house of the LORD to be rebuilt. "’"

3 Then the word of the LORD came by Haggai the prophet saying,

4 "Is it time for you yourselves to dwell in your paneled houses while this house lies desolate?"

5 Now therefore, thus says the LORD of hosts, "Consider your ways!

6 "You have sown much, but harvest little; you eat, but there is not enough to be satisfied; you drink, but there is not enough to become drunk; you put on clothing, but no one is warm enough; and he who earns, earns wages to put into a purse with holes."

7 Thus says the LORD of hosts, "Consider your ways!

8 "Go up to the mountains, bring wood and rebuild the temple, that I may be pleased with it and be glorified," says the LORD.

9 "You look for much, but behold, it comes to little; when you bring it home, I blow it away. Why?" declares the LORD of hosts, "Because of My house which lies desolate, while each of you runs to his own house.

10 "Therefore, because of you the sky has withheld its dew, and the earth has withheld its produce.

11 "And I called for a drought on the land, on the mountains, on the grain, on the new wine, on the oil, on what the ground produces, on men, on cattle, and on all the labor of your hands."

12 Then Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, and Joshua the son of Jehozadak, the high priest, with all the remnant of the people, obeyed the voice of the LORD their God and the words of Haggai the prophet, as the LORD their God had sent him. And the people showed reverence for the LORD.

13 Then Haggai, the messenger of the LORD, spoke by the commission of the LORD to the people saying, "’I am with you,’ declares the LORD."

14 So the LORD stirred up the spirit of Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and the spirit of Joshua the son of Jehozadak, the high priest, and the spirit of all the remnant of the people; and they came and worked on the house of the LORD of hosts, their God,

15 on the twenty-fourth day of the sixth month in the second year of Darius the king.

Introduction

One of the results of backsliding which I briefly mentioned last week is the lost of vision. Personal visions given by God vanish when a person backslide in his relationship with God.

Churches and ministries can lose their God given vision by turning away from God. When I was a young man, there was a church that inspired me. The church was going through a time of revival and scores of young people were being saved. They preached a strong message of Holiness and repentance and the young people were radical for Jesus in their lifestyle. When I was in Bible College I had the privilege to sit under the teaching of the pastor of this church. Something he said in his teaching stick to me since then. He said and I quote “God asked me whether I want a big church or a strong church?” He reply to God then was “Lord I want a strong church!”

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