By Clifton Angel
Have you ever put off doing something you know needed to be done? Yours truly is a "pro" procrastinator, and that's not something of which I am proud. It is a constant struggle, and I know I am not alone in the struggle. There was a time when God sent a prophet to His people because of their procrastination. It was during the days of one named Zerubbabel.
Zerubbabel, whose name means "from Babylon," was called by God to lead His people out "from Babylon." It was there that they had been taken captive for 70 years because of their disobedience toward God, as a nation, and as a people. Those Zerubbabel led back were the faithful remnant. Returning to Judah meant they were returning to a land of ruin that required rebuilding. As seen in the text of the Bible, the people were quick to build themselves homes to have a roof over their heads; however, they were procrastinating in rebuilding the Lord's house, the temple.
Therefore, God sent His prophet Haggai to Zerubbabel and His people. The first message God sent Zerubbabel by Haggai was a message to rouse them from their delay: “This people say, The time is not come, the time that the LORD’S house should be built. Then came the word of the LORD by Haggai the prophet, saying, Is it time for you, O ye, to dwell in your cieled houses, and this house lie waste? Now therefore thus saith the LORD of hosts; Consider your ways ... Go up to the mountain, and bring wood, and build the house; and I will take pleasure in it, and I will be glorified, saith the LORD” (Haggai 1:2–5, 8).
Next, God sent to Zerubbabel by Haggai a message to rally the people into getting them to get to work: “Who is left among you that saw this house in her first glory? and how do ye see it now? is it not in your eyes in comparison of it as nothing? 4 Yet now be strong, O Zerubbabel, saith the LORD...fear ye not” (Haggai 2:3–5).
Then, Haggai was sent to deliver a message to remind His people of the importance of this responsibility—their livelihood depended on their obedience in rebuilding the temple: “Consider now... from the day that the foundation of the LORD’S temple was laid, consider it. ... from this day will I bless you” (Haggai 2:18–19).
Finally, Haggai proclaimed God's message of reassurance concerning His power and authority over all (Haggai 2:20–23).
How are we doing in our responsibility toward God? How is our relationship with Him? Is there something we are putting off doing that we know must be done? Let us be roused from our delay. Allow God's Word to rally us into action! May we be reminded of the importance of faithfully serving Him! Let us be reassured that He is in control!
Monday, July 18, 2022
Haggai & Zerubbabel
- Clifton Angel preaches for the Coldwater Church of Christ in Coldwater, MS. He may be contacted through that congregation's website: http://www.coldwatercofc.com/