Tag: put the Lord’s house first
Scripture reading for September 26th: Haggai 1-2
Have you ever struggled with priorities? We have so many choices and opportunities. Many times they all look good. Mary and I had just about gotten our children through college and the last one was ready to get married. We were enjoying our first senior pastorate in Lacey, Washington and an empty nest. We loved to go out on my day off and go antiquing and sight-seeing in that beautiful state. None of those things were sinful and we were having a good time. Then God spoke to us through a missionary and our friends about enlarging our family by adoption. To be honest, that choice did not initially look like something we wanted to do with all our hearts. We wrestled with it for some time, before becoming settled on the Lord’s will and priority for our lives. After we chose, we knew we had done the right thing!
Haggai was speaking to people who had chosen to come back from Babylon and rebuild the Temple and Jerusalem. Initially, these people had the right priority and obeyed the Lord. But they had drifted away from the priorities that once motivated them and began to focus on themselves, their own houses, and family needs. They neglected the house of the Lord! (Haggai 1:2-4) Haggai spoke to them directly from the Lord’s word through him.
“Give careful thought to your ways. You have planted much, but 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.” “Give careful thought to your ways. Go up into the mountains, and bring down timber and build a house, so that I may take pleasure in it and be honored,”says the Lord.” (Haggai 1:5-8)
Have you experienced lack of satisfaction and lack of fulfillment? It may be your priorities are out of whack like those who were in Jerusalem to rebuild the Lord’s temple. They had gotten their focus onto themselves and their houses and neglected God’s house! God was gently reminding them of their priorities. If we seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, everything we need will be added to us. If we try to grab what we need, even what we have will be lost! (Matthew 6:33)
We need to be about God’s business, because a shaking is coming! (Haggai 2:6) God is going to shake the earth, sea, and all the nations of the earth. The ‘desired of the nations’ (Jesus Christ) is coming and will fill His house with glory! Jesus Christ did this in human form about 500 years after Haggai’s time. He will do it again during the millennial reign following the rapture of the church. The temple was the place of the first house, we are His temple today! “”The glory of this present house will be greater than the glory of the former house,” says the Lord Almighty. “And in this place I will grant peace,” declares the Lord Almighty.” (Haggai 2:9)