Summary: We can learn from the Jews of Haggai’s time how to experience spiritual awakening

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Spiritual Awakening – Haggai 1:5-14

Who Lives in you? Let’s Show It!

Review from last time - Haggai

• The Jews had returned to Jerusalem under the leadership of Zerubabel, the political leader and Joshua, the religious leader

• They were to rebuild the temple

• Initially the people were enthusiastic, they cleared the rubble, laid a foundation, and recommenced the daily sacrifice

• However their initial zeal waned, problems with the Samaritans

• The people became increasingly concerned about their own personal affairs and for the next 14 years the work on the temple was neglected and came to a standstill

• So after 14 years God had a serious case of “cabin fever”

• So He sends Haggai to shake people out of their spiritual apathy and remind them of their spiritual responsibilities to build his house

Haggai 1:1 In the second year of King Darius, on the first day of the sixth month, the word of the LORD came through the prophet Haggai to Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and to Joshua [1] son of Jehozadak, the high priest: 2 This is what the LORD Almighty says: "These people say, ’The time has not yet come for the LORD’s house to be built.’ “3 Then the word of the LORD came through the prophet Haggai: 4 "Is it a time for you yourselves to be living in your paneled houses, while this house remains a ruin?"

• What is unique about this prophet’s message is that unlike his counterparts whose messages were ignored, Haggai message produced a positive response from God’s people

• There was a great spiritual awakening in these people

• This is one of two spiritual themes that dominate the message of this book. They are Spiritual Apathy and Spiritual Awakening

• Last time we looked at the subject of Spiritual Apathy.

We identified from this situation three causes of Spiritual apathy

• First Sign: God’s Work was being neglected

• Not just a challenge for the Jews of Haggai’s time. Part of our responsibility today as His Body is to be temple builders

• Because God challenges His church today as He has challenged his people down through time to “Build My House”

• As a church we have had to take time to reform, regroup, and to recover. But now its time for us to get back to doing the task for which the church exists – building God’s temple

• This is going to be a major focus from here on as a church,

• The second sign of spiritual apathy – God’s people are content with the status quo

• v.2 This is what the LORD Almighty says: "These people say, ’The time has not yet come for the LORD’s house to be built.’

• The people were fat and happy, they were couch potatoes – they were content with the status quo

• The Jews day after day, week after week, month after month, year after year they kept bring their sacrifices to the slab of concrete with an alter perched on it, while all around them lay the ruins of the temple

• This went on for 14 years

• This is danger God warned the Israelites to be aware of before they entered the promised land

Deuteronomy 8:11-14 "Beware that you do not forget the LORD your God..lest -- when you have eaten and are full, and have built beautiful houses and dwell in them; and when your herds and your flocks multiply, and your silver and your gold are multiplied, and all that you have is multiplied; when your heart is lifted up, and you forget the LORD your God who brought you out of the land of Egypt."

• You think that verse has some relevance to the church today

• What about this one

Revelation 3:14-19 “And to the angel of the church of the Laodiceans

• The status quo is not an option for a Christian. We should never be content with our spiritual life, our church, our family situation

• The Spirit is continually moving us towards holiness. If we ever become content, we have stopped listening to the Spirit

• We either grow or we die. There is no middle ground

This brings us to the third sign of spiritual Apathy, God’s people made excuses

• v.2 ……"These people say, ’The time has not yet come for the LORD’s house to be built.’

• Many excuses as to “why”

• Point is they were offering lame excuses for not doing the Lord’s work

So how do we rate on the apathy scale?

• How’s our enthusiasm for doing God’s work of building His Holy Temple

• Are we contented in the present rut we have allowed ourselves to be in?

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