37(Haggai 1,01-05) Finishing What You Start
In 538 BC under the decree of King Cyrus of Persia, 42,360 Jews returned to their homeland to rebuild the cities and the temple. This began under the leadership of Zerubbabel and the priest Joshua. (Ezra 1:1-4)
The work began in 536 BC, but because of opposition from neighbors and indifference by the Jews themselves, the work was stopped; for sixteen years. (Ezra 4:1-4)
In 520 BC God sent a message by the prophet Haggai to stir up the people to finish the job they had begun.
They had grown comfortable, and the work of the Lord was set aside. Under the preaching of Haggai and Zechariah, the leadership of Israel resumed what they had started, and finished in 516 BC (Ezra 5:1-5;11-17).
Preaching is important. It stirs the hearts of God’s people. It gets them off dead center sometimes, it reminds them of God’s plans for them.
I. Too Busy (to Build) (1:2)
People reason a free pass from God because of the seasons of their life. Trying to forge a career, raise a young family, overachieve for that promotion, make that much needed extra income for the family. And God is neglected, because He is so patient and easy to neglect.
Busyness of life affects us all. Churches are made of busy families. In itself, there is no sin in busyness. It is the stuff of an involved life. The problem lies in priorities.
Have we grown too busy to finish the work of God?
II. Too Comfortable (to Care) (1:3-5)
In the sixteen year interval, they had continued on with their life. They had built their homes while the work of God languished.
Their priorities were to secure their comfort, without considering the state of affairs at the house of God.
This is not about painting the nursery or mowing the church property. That is too easy. No this is about the work of the kingdom. What work of the kingdom has gone unfinished, maybe untouched for some time?
III. Dissatisfaction (1:6)
I am convinced that some believers are disgruntled and don’t know why. They are displeased with this or that. Yet the problem may well be misplaced priorities.
Maybe the reason you are disgruntled has little to do with something or someone else and more to do with your own decision to be uninvolved.
Consider your priorities.
God calls them to account even though the temple is unfinished.