Hey friends, I invite you to join me in Haggai 2 as we journey together over the next few days. I’ll be your “tour guide” as we dig into His Word together. Are you ready? Click here to find 3 parallel versions of Haggai 2 to give your perspective and help you in your study. Our journey will take us only through the first 9 verses, but I think there are nuggets there. Let’s go find them!
First, let’s figure out the time of this event. The NLT states “October 17,” which may be accurate, or may be too confining. The NKJV and NASB (great translations to study from, BTW) indicate the 21st day of the 7th month, which is how days and dates were assigned in those days. (The prophet Haggai wrote the book in about 520 BC.)
To understand more about the Jewish calendar, click here. A key factor, though, is that months of the Hebrew calendar are always 30 days long, meaning days will not align year-to-year with our Gregorian calendar. Thus, while we know the 7th month is in the fall, the 21st day (as stated in Haggai) will not always equate to October 17, but perhaps it did in the year Haggai refers (thus perhaps making the date indicated in the NLT correct).
Based on what we learn in verse 2, Haggai is addressing those who had returned from Babylonian captivity to rebuild the temple. Keep in mind, Solomon’s temple, destroyed by the Babylonians, was beautiful and somewhat opulent. It rose stately and majestic upon the hill and it was a sight to behold.
So, notice what the Lord says through Haggai in verse 3. The people had been in exile for almost 70 years, so most adults during the time of Solomon’s temple were now dead and the children of the time were now old men and women. So, the questions are, “Who saw the temple before?” and based on what they saw, “Do you even recognize this place? It is like nothing at all!” The temple lost its grandeur when it was destroyed, and now they had to live with a less-than-expected version of the temple.
But, let’s close out today’s portion of study by looking at verses 4-5.
- What does the Lord tell them immediately in verse 4?
- Who all does He encourage with those words?
- What is the Lord’s promise at the end of verse 4?
- Based on what you know about God’s faithfulness in rescuing the Hebrew people from the land of Egypt, what do you make of verse 5?
Dear friends, has something been torn down in your life, and your attempt to re-build it has been a struggle? Do you look upon what once was, and long for a return to it? What is God saying to you in these verses?
You may be a leader, you may be a warrior, or you may be part of the remnant. Verse 2 includes you and the Lord wants to bless you if you will only take courage and be strong in the power of His might! We live in tough days, and they will get even tougher. But our Lord stands as a strong tower and the righteous run into it! (Proverbs 18:10)
It gets even better tomorrow, so keep your Bible handy and your mind prepared for what the Lord has in store for us as we journey down this path together! See you tomorrow!