Make your own free website on Tripod.com

Haggai

The First Prophet of the First Return

 

Second Message

The Time To Build Is Now

Haggai 1:3-11

Hag 1:3-11
3 Then came the word of the LORD by Haggai the prophet, saying,

4 Is it time for you, O ye, to dwell in your cieled houses, and this house lie waste?

5 Now therefore thus saith the LORD of hosts; Consider your ways.

6 Ye have sown much, and bring in little; ye eat, but ye have not enough; ye drink, but ye are not filled with drink; ye clothe you, but there is none warm; and he that earneth wages earneth wages to put it into a bag with holes.

7 Thus saith the LORD of hosts; Consider your ways.

8 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.

9 Ye looked for much, and, lo, it came to little; and when ye brought it home, I did blow upon it. Why? saith the LORD of hosts. Because of mine house that is waste, and ye run every man unto his own house.

10 Therefore the heaven over you is stayed from dew, and the earth is stayed from her fruit.

11 And I called for a drought upon the land, and upon the mountains, and upon the corn, and upon the new wine, and upon the oil, and upon that which the ground bringeth forth, and upon men, and upon cattle, and upon all the labour of the hands.
KJV

I stayed in a missionary apartment at the Church where I was saved during one of those "waiting on the Lord" times between ministries. The new pastor had a vision of starting a Christian School. I sat in on a congregational meeting where he brought up the subject. After he made the proposal the congregationalists began to stand and speak. The Church had shrunk over the years, and was half of what it used to be in the days when I was saved there. This brought on all kinds of financial problems. The roof was leaking, the furnace needed repairs, the building next door where my Sunday School class met was empty,  many felt it should be sold. My pastor friend nudged me, and said in a whisper "this is not going to fly." After everyone had their say, a silence took hold for a few moments. An elderly lady stood up, and began to speak in a soft voice. She was a charter member. She said most of you don't remember, but we built this huge sanctuary where your sitting in the middle of the depression. Many a wedding ring went into the offering basket to start and finish the construction. Sacrifice is a word that seems to have lost it's meaning these days. She sat down, and  a new silence suddenly set in. I could see some tears, and heard the sniffles.  My pastor friend very wisely broke the silence by calling for a vote on the Christian Academy. There was not a single objection.

I. Haggai 1:3-5

God Gives His Evaluation and Advice

Haggai 1:3-5

3 Then came the word of the LORD by Haggai the prophet, saying,

4 Is it time for you, O ye, to dwell in your cieled houses, and this house lie waste?

5 Now therefore thus saith the LORD of hosts; Consider your ways.

Haggai 1:3

3 Then came the word of the LORD by Haggai the prophet, saying,


 

It is important that we recognize the word of the LORD when it comes. Here, it is to Haggai by direct revelation. To us, today, it is that silent voice of inspiration in the garden as we contemplate the word, and our circumstances. God speaks clearly to those willing to listen. Those who study and know His word are the recipients of inspiration. The things of the LORD get done because of this. There are also those who want self adoration, and so through great fanfare make claims of God speaking to them or their leaders. It is just plain stupid what I see in Charismatic circles as they boast of prophecies received. It is even more ridiculous when one of them claims to be the interpreter of the gibberish they call speaking in tongues. Were this true, it would be divine revelation as is happening here with Haggai. It would be as authoritive as the Bible itself. I'm reminded of Oral Roberts declaring his City of Hope Hospital (now on the auction block) as being in that category of divine revelation. That was a very stupid god who gave him that message because a lot of Christian money was squandered on a great big flop. It never opened it's doors, but for some tokenism face saving. It was a loser from the very beginning continually absorbing money like a sponge. I want you to know the God who spoke to Haggai is not the god who speaks to the Charismatic of today. He is not the god who goes on television announcing to the world some anonymous person with a bad back was just healed. It's just plain stupid to associate God speaking to Haggai, and the god speaking to Pat Robertson on the 700 Club as the same. Were it true, it would be divine revelation, not the word of knowledge that Robertson spins it into. Robertson willing admits the same god who told Oral Roberts to build the City of Hope gives him his words of knowledge, or told Jim Bakker to build that PTL fiasco. Some might say Haggai was by divine revelation telling Israel to build the Second Temple, and look what a fiasco that turned into. I would only say The greater glory of Christ appeared in that Temple, and God is not through with the Temple or Israel yet. Israel is back right now being prepared for a great victory. God is through with the City of Hope, and PTL! In fact, He was never part of them in the first place. People today must be discerning about divine revelation. They must use that brain God gave them. The Oral Roberts, Pat Robertsons, and Jim Bakkers infect every generation with their pompous claims to divine revelation. This generation more then any other has embraced them. One falls, and they do not discern. They just go running to the next. Right now it is Benny Hinn and Paul Crouch among others who are in the lead. They are the worst, and bolder yet in claims of divine revelation then all who went before. It is the road to destruction, and the building of the Great Apostate Church that will turn on Israel and the Temple during the 7 year Tribulation. It will join with the Anti-Christ who also will claim divine revelation. The same folks who believe Benny Hinn will also believe the Anti-Christ when he makes his appearance at the end of this line of Charismatic divine revelation claims

Luke 12:56-57
56 Ye hypocrites, ye can discern the face of the sky and of the earth; but how is it that ye do not discern this time?

57 Yea, and why even of yourselves judge ye not what is right?
KJV


Rev 22:18
18 For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book:
KJV
.

 

Haggai 1:4

4 Is it time for you, O ye, to dwell in your cieled houses, and this house lie waste?

 

There comes a time to build for God. When it comes, it will mean sacrifice so it will have value. Too often the real meaning of sacrifice is lost to a pampered people. Their concept of sacrifice is to get up on Sunday morning, and go to Church while the neighbor is loading up the camper or the boat. Sacrifice is coming early on Wednesday for choir practice. There are a million and one sacrifices made today by modern Christians. It is all perspective, but real sacrifice is measured by God who looks beyond what is expected, and sees what real cost is being given. Sacrifice must cost or the value of the word loses it's meaning. Calvary becomes mundane in short order. It is best to hear from those who know what real sacrifice is. Every Christian should be well read in the biographies of missionaries. The sacrifices of William Cary, Amy Carmichael, Hudson Taylor, David Livingston should be known to all. It keeps your perspective on sacrifice clear. Reading the life sacrifices of our Christian heritage makes for real Christians who can build when God gives the call. I'm thrilled when I hear of congregations who build their own buildings with their own hands. There is a bonus in unbreakable comradery when sacrifice is shared. It is a special bonus when you not only donate to the buying of the next course of bricks, but mortar them up together with the folks who sit in front and in back during Sunday Service. This is the sacrifice that counts. Of course, there is selfish sacrifice that is worthless. I once saw an AWANA Club grow from 18 children to 99 (a disappointing one short of 100). I often thought of the one lost sheep. The husband and wife who painted the basement walls were outraged that almost 100 children would line up along those walls and lean back on a dirty gym shoe. Yes, they were not well disciplined. And yes, that sacrificial paint job was getting scuffed. But, kids were getting saved, and new families were coming. The sacrifice is not to paint once, but to paint again, and again, as each new year brings more and more of those undisciplined kids. The real meaning of sacrifice is being lost to many modern Christians.  

Haggai didn't see finely painted walls. He didn't see any walls at all much less the building. The people had settled in, and over the past 17 years had built homes for themselves. They were not shelters for  they had the time to finish "ceiled" them. Some commentators say they were paneled with the finest of wood? My thoughts are they were on to other things now that the necessities were under control. Their necessities were taken care of, but God's necessity and purpose for this first return had been sidestepped. This was so important to God that He called the first prophet of the first return to address this issue. Haggai is a short book with a right to the point message. Build the Second Jewish Temple! It was to be built right where the First Jewish Temple was built!  It would not be as spectacular as the First, but it would see the greater glory then that of the First. It would see the First Coming of the Lord Jesus Christ. He would be consumed with protecting the integrity of this place.

Ps 69:9
9 For the zeal of thine house hath eaten me up; and the reproaches of them that reproached thee are fallen upon me.
KJV


John 2:14-17
14 And found in the temple those that sold oxen and sheep and doves, and the changers of money sitting:

15 And when he had made a scourge of small cords, he drove them all out of the temple, and the sheep, and the oxen; and poured out the changers' money, and overthrew the tables;

16 And said unto them that sold doves, Take these things hence; make not my Father's house an house of merchandise.

17 And his disciples remembered that it was written, The zeal of thine house hath eaten me up.
KJV

Soon, the Two Witnesses of Revelation chapter 11 will call on Israel to build the Third Jewish Temple on that same place. This second return of Israel has the same purpose as did the first return. Build this time the Third Jewish Temple!

 

Hag 1:4
Note, Many a good work is put by by being put off, as Felix put off the prosecution of his convictions to a more convenient season. They do not say that they will never repent, and reform, and be religious, but, "Not yet." And so the great business we were sent into the world to do is not done, under pretence that it is all in good time to go about it.
(from Matthew Henry's Commentary on the Whole Bible: New Modern Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1991 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

Note, There is an aptness in us to misinterpret providential discouragements in our duty, as if they amounted to a discharge from our duty, when they are only intended for the trial and exercise of our courage and faith. It is bad to neglect our duty, but it is worse to vouch Providence for the patronizing of our neglects.
(from Matthew Henry's Commentary on the Whole Bible: New Modern Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1991 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

Hag 1:4
With this question the prophet cuts off all excuse, on the ground that the circumstances of the times, and the oppression under which they suffered, did not permit of the rebuilding of the temple. If they themselves lived comfortably in wainscoted houses, their civil and political condition could not be so oppressive, that they could find in that a sufficient excuse for neglecting to build the temple.

(from Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament: New Updated Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

 

Haggai 1:5

5 Now therefore thus saith the LORD of hosts; Consider your ways.

The ways seen by the world are a living picture of the heart. Haggai poses the reality of this with this statement from God. The Gentiles looked, and saw the house of God in waste. They could only conclude these people do not love their God very much. What ways does the world see when it looks at you? 

I had just moved into an apartment in Somers, Montana. I had some new room mates who were Christians, but I didn't know them very well yet. The telephone installer came, and I used the opportunity to give testimony of Christ. He became very interested, and after the phone was hooked up I asked if he would like a cold drink. We were standing by the fridge, and there on the mostly empty shelves sat the biggest wine jug I ever saw. I had no explanation for it. The conversation about Christ went cold also. I could sense his feeling of hypocrisy. Later, I learned A&W was having a fill your own container sale, and the jug was full of root beer. I also got to know my room mates better in time, and had that happened at a later date I would have known the jug could not be filled with wine. I would have tested it - but at that moment I just did not know the ways of these new Christian friends. A testimony was lost because of this. 

Here, testimony was being lost also. The Gentiles could see the Jews were settled in. They could see the quality of living that was developing. They could also see the Temple lay in waste. They could only conclude this people do not seem to have a lot of concern about their God. Their ways say as much as would interest me in learning more about their God. Our Christian testimony is the most important thing we have. It must be guarded and protected at all costs. A good Christian testimony with years of investment can be destroyed in a single moment. Once it's gone, it's gone forever. Yes, we can repent, and build anew. But, the onlookers will always wonder if it will all come to naught again as before? Young people especially need to be on guard. The temptations of the world, the flesh, and the Devil are powerful. Budweiser is skillful on college campuses trying to get at that one moment of weakness. Trying to use all the peer pressure that can be mustered to get just one slip. No matter where the youth turn be it sporting events, or weekend breaks. Bud is there looking to steal another testimony. It is not about having fun. It is not about becoming a drunkard either. It is all about stealing the testimony of the innocent. Budweiser would fade into oblivion if it could not steal the testimony of the innocent. These are terrible people who have no interest in you. They care not that morality fails when under the influence. They care not that most crime is committed by intoxicated individuals. They do not care that Budweiser has broken more marriages then  any other factor. And, they feel nothing if you should maim or kill while driving. Conceder your ways! Examine your heart. Keep your testimony with passion. Do not weaken even once for that is all that is needed to destroy your testimony. The world, your friends, all watch your ways!

Ps 26:1-6
1 Judge me, O LORD; for I have walked in mine integrity: I have trusted also in the LORD; therefore I shall not slide.
2 Examine me, O LORD, and prove me; try my reins and my heart.
3 For thy lovingkindness is before mine eyes: and I have walked in thy truth.
4 I have not sat with vain persons, neither will I go in with dissemblers.
5 I have hated the congregation of evil doers; and will not sit with the wicked.

6 I will wash mine hands in innocency: so will I compass thine altar, O LORD:
KJV

 

II. Haggai 1:6,7

Materialism the Great Nemesis

Haggai 1:6,7

6 Ye have sown much, and bring in little; ye eat, but ye have not enough; ye drink, but ye are not filled with drink; ye clothe you, but there is none warm; and he that earneth wages earneth wages to put it into a bag with holes.

7 Thus saith the LORD of hosts; Consider your ways.

 

"Ye have sown much. and bring in little,"

Hag 1:6
What the judgments of God were by which they were punished for this neglect, v. 6, 9-11. They neglected the building of God's house, and put that off, that they might have time and money for their secular affairs. They desired to be excused from such an expensive piece of work under this pretence, that they must provide for their families; their children must have meat and portions too, and, until they have got before-hand in the world, they cannot think of rebuilding the temple. Now, that the punishment might answer to the sin, God by his providence kept them still behind-hand, and that poverty which they thought to prevent by not building the temple God brought upon them for not building it. They were sensible of the smart of the judgment, and every one complained of the unseasonable weather, the great losses they sustained in their corn and cattle, and the decay of trade; but they were not sensible of the cause of the judgment, and the ground of God's controversy with them. They did not, or would not, see and own that it was for their putting off the building of the temple that they lay under these manifest tokens of God's displeasure; and therefore God here gives them notice that this is that for which he contended with them. Note, We need the help of God's prophets and ministers to expound to us, not only the judgments of God's mouth, but the judgments of his hands, that we may understand his mind and meaning in his rod as well as in his word, to discover to us not only wherein we have offended God, but wherein God shows himself offended at us.
(from Matthew Henry's Commentary on the Whole Bible: New Modern Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1991 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)
 

 

"Ye have sown much, but bring in little" is a phrase pointing to the futility of life apart from God's purposes. We work, work, work, but when it's all over little really amounted to much. The accumulation of wealth means nothing at death. Fame in the world often is meaningless in eternity. A life of little worth at the end is sad to contemplate. Many things may have been accomplished, but what has had value to God? What was done as part of God's plan for that generation in time?

God's purpose for this generation was to build the Second Jewish Temple on the Temple Mount. Everything else that they had done meant nothing to God apart from this task. They sowed much, but were in danger of not having sown what God intended. They had worldly success, but what God expected of them had not yet been accomplished. They were in danger of passing through life with nothing but wood, hay, and stubble! Their works had been channeled in good endeavors, but the purpose God put on their generation was still waiting to be done.

1 Cor 3:12-15
12Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble;

13Every man's work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man's work of what sort it is.

14If any man's work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward.

15If any man's work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.
KJV
 

This present generation in Israel is perplexed. They sense a divine purpose, but are blind to what that purpose is. Many Russian Jews have little religious background. They see through the hypocrisy of the ultra-orthodox drowned in traditions of self-righteousness, and yet look for more divine purpose then what secularized Judaism offers. They may be the most open-minded Jews in Israel today. I believe the blindness will end in the twinkling of an eye. The Lord Jesus will appear in the clouds, and in the twinkling of the eye the dead in Christ will be resurrected (soul and body reunited unto perfection). They will immediately join Him going up to heaven. We who are alive and saved will be changed in that same twinkle. We will be fully cleansed by the power in the blood of Christ, and will be sinlessly perfect forevermore. We too, in that same twinkle will go to be with Christ as His bride. The Church will be complete, and prepared for the marriage supper in heaven. The rapture of the Church will have been accomplished. We will leave behind a spiritually impotent, Elmer Gantry (Charismatic) type of Christianity. A Hollywood spectacularly popular, Apostate Christianity, that will turn on Israel out of jealous rage. I believe in that same twinkle two of the greatest prophets recorded in the Bible dwelling in Jerusalem will turn to this same Jesus of the rapture as their Messiah. A new dispensation will begin. A new foundation will be laid. 144,000 chosen, celibate, Jewish men all living in Israel will join the Two Witnesses as they receive Jesus as their personal Messiah. They will have one primary task. To build Ezekiel's Temple (Chapters 40 -48) in Jerusalem on the Temple Mount. They will have 3 1/2 years to accomplish this their primary testimony to secular Judaism first, and then the world. They will build the throne for Christ to sit at His Second Coming. They will establish kosher worship in the Temple where honor of the blood of sacrifice will again be presented to the world. Only those under divine guidance can accomplish such a task, and the Two Witnesses of Revelation chapter 11 are recorded as having such divine revelation. The blindness of the Jew will be lifted, and perplexity will turn to purpose.

Haggai put the purpose into his generation, and the Two Witnesses will put that same purpose into this generation. They also must sow for God's purpose, or their labors will be for nothing.

We Christians of this generation have purpose also. Our purpose is to step aside for the future Glory of Israel. We will for the most part be raptured out of Apostate Christianity. We should have been separated from them; we should have exposed them as their false compromising doctrines of no doctrine budded and grew, but we became complacent. We became rich and comfortable doing nothing. We were neither cold or hot! A lukewarm Christianity became so polluted God could only spew us from His mouth.

The tares dominate main stream Christianity today. There is little victory in the rapture from my perspective when I contemplate what we will leave behind! The wood, hay, and stubble rule our generation.

 

"ye eat, but ye have not enough; ye drink, but ye are not filled with drink;"

Zechariah wrote his prophecies at the same time Haggai wrote. Both wrote to the same Jews. Haggai wrote from around 520 to 505 BC while Zechariah wrote from about 520 to 485 BC. Both wrote to the same returnees of the First Return. However, Zechariah wrote of great blessings as a result of faithfulness while Haggai wrote of blessings lost.

(Zec 8:11-15)

11 But now I will not be unto the residue of this people as in the former days, saith the LORD of hosts. 12 For the seed shall be prosperouse; the vine shall give her fruit, and the ground shall give her increase, and the heavens shall give their dew; and I will cause the remnant of this people to possess all these things.  13 And it shall come to pass, that as ye were a curse among the heathen, O house of Judah, and house of Israel; so will I save you, and ye shall be a blessing: fear not, but let your hands be strong. 14 For thus saith the LORD of hosts; As I thought to punish you, when your fathers provoked me to wrath, saith the LORD of hosts, and I repented not: 15 So again have I thought in these days to do well unto Jerusalem and to the house of Judah: fear ye not.

The Holy Bible : King James Version. 1995 (Zec 8:11-15). Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.

 

Haggai drives home the reality of the returnees which is not what the vision of Zechariah promised. Something was wrong! They were not prosperous! The vine had not given of her fruit, the ground was not giving her increase, and the heavens were not giving their dew. These people did not posses all things as they would have expected by the words of Zechariah.

The task God had expected this generation to accomplish was being left for others. These wonderful blessings promised through Zechariah would happen, but only when the Temple was built. It is a good reminder to this first generation of the Second Return. They will always be lacking the fullness of God's blessings until the Temple is built! They will have a taste, but never experience the fullness. A change of heart is what Haggai was driving toward. A change of heart will be what the Two Witnesses of Revelation chapter 11 will drive toward with this generation of Jews should this book of Haggai take on a contemporary condition for our time.

"ye clothe you, but there is none warm;"

I learned a Montana lesson the hard way while at Bible School. I was told to expect weather changes on the quick in the mountains. I knew I should be prepared, but it was my first year at Bible School. I had a Bible study in the Snowy Mountains outside Lewistown among the ranchers of the area. I taught the adults, and had two Bible School girls to teach the children. It was a beautiful Fall day. We left after the study that evening as the first snowfall of the season began quite lightly. We reached the crossover road that led to the main gravel road back to town when the snow really began to come down. We had to cross a small valley, and drive up the other side. We got about 3/4 the way up, but lost our traction. I had to back down, and make another try. The girls pointed out they had only their Sunday shoes, and no jackets. If we should have to walk out, they were not prepared. I was no better. We had cloths - good Sunday go to meeting cloths, but we were not prepared for what we would face if we should have to walk out. Well, the Lord answered our prayers, and we made the crest of the hill. The rest was downhill to Lewistown. Our host called to make sure we made it back to school. I'm sure the rescue folks would have  gathered us up had we not made it. I learned a lesson that day. I kept sleeping bags and heavy jackets behind the seat of my pickup from then on along with my tire chains. I think I know the point Haggai was making when he said "ye cloth you, but there is none warm."

"and he that earneth wages earneth wages to put it into a bag with holes. "

Materialism has long been the nemeses of man accomplishing God's purposes. It is never a matter of God not supplying what is necessary, but rather that man preoccupies himself with gaining wealth over accomplishing God's purposes. No other generation will be so occupied with materialism as will the last generation of the Church age. I am convinced this (Christianity Today) is that infamous generation!

(Rev 3:14-22)

14 And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceansa write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God;  15 I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot. 16 So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth. 17 Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked: 18 I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see. 19 As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent. 20 Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me. 21 To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne. 22 He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.

The Holy Bible : King James Version. 1995 (Re 3:14-4:1). Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.

Never has there been a Christian community as rich as this generation of Christians. Never has there been a generation so ignorant of righteousness. Never has there been a generation so ignorant of Bible doctrine! Never has there been a generation so gullible that it runs after every false claim to spirituality! They throw their money to the mystics and soothsayers by the millions and billions. The Charismatics have hijacked "born again"  from this gullible generation while exhibiting the extremism of pagan antics in bold defiance of reverent worship. All this happened while the Evangelicals were preoccupied in selling books of no consequence, and doing their best to mock conservative, separated, fundamentalism. It is this generation of Christians that have been so intent on materialism that they left the Great Apostate Church of the Revelation sprout, and now dominate main stream Christianity. This Apostate Church will be left behind as fodder for the Anti-Christ. It will turn on the future glory of Israel out of jealous rage because it will be exposed as false. It will be rejected by the real Jewish prophets and miracle workers of the coming era.

The Christianity of today is nothing more then a bag full of holes. Everything going into it is falling out the bottom. It's music is a good measure of how it operates. Hymns of the past like "The Old Rugged Cross" have permanence.  Today's contemporary Christian music is like the secular top ten. Changing almost weekly so there is a new song to sell, and make lots and lots of money. Today's contemporary Christian music is completely under the control of the money changers. No real missionary or pastor makes the kind of money as does the contemporary Christian artist. Never could the charge "rich, and increased with goods" be made as forcefully as can be made to the contemporary Christian of today who supports such excess. There is no eternal quality to this music, it is designed to pass right on through like going through a bag of holes. Today's hit is tomorrow's lost and forgotten memory. It is the same with the contemporary book scene. In fact, it is the same with almost everything associated to this material minded contemporary Christianity of today. Big programs, big spectaculars, big evangelisms, big stars to promote even bigger ambitions. The bigger - the more money  - the bigger it must be what follows - the richer it must become. No matter the doctrine! No matter the error! No matter the growth of apostasy! No matter how much just passes through like money flowing through a bag full of holes.

Haggai becomes very contemporary for this generation of Christians as his words were contemporary to the Jews of the First Return. God's children seem to change little if any over the generations. Haggai was able to effect a change of heart in his generation. How sad his words have no effect on Today's Christianity!

 

Haggai 1:7

Repeat of Charge to Consider Your (Materialistic) Ways

7 Thus saith the LORD of hosts; Consider your ways. (direct your heart on your ways)

The exhortation to rebuild the temple (1:7-8)
 
1:7-8. The Lord again (cf. v. 5) exhorted the people to reflection and challenged them to action. Having rebuked them for what they had not done and having shown the fruitlessness of what they had done, the Lord challenged them concerning what they should do—rebuild the temple to the glory of God. The implicit message of verses 2-4 is now made explicit: Build the house (i.e., God’s temple). The need for bringing timber down from the mountains may imply that they had used up for their own houses the lumber purchased for rebuilding the temple a few years before (cf. Ezra 3:7). Also it appears that sufficient stone was available from the desolated temple and that they needed only timber for finishing the walls and roof. The completion of the temple would be pleasing to God (so that I may take pleasure in it). It would also bring Him honor or glory, showing the nations that Israel’s God was worthy of worship in such a place by His servants.
D.     The explanation of the people’s impoverishment (1:9-11)
The divine judgment referred to in verses 5-7 is now made more specific. Failure to do what they should—rebuild the temple—resulted in economic ruin and poverty.
Walvoord, J. F. (1983-c1985). The Bible knowledge commentary : An exposition of the scriptures (Hag 1:7). Wheaton, IL: Victor Books.

What they had not done, and what they had done is encompassed in the repeated charge to "consider your ways." It is a good thing to sit down from time to time, and consider your ways. Look at the big picture of your life. Many a pastor and Christian worker will shock themselves if they let the Holy Spirit reveal the truth of what they have not done, and even worse what they have done under the umbrella of Christianity. They have worked, worked, worked, but what have they produced? How many lives have been truly changed into Christlikeness. Lives of faithfulness to God rather then religion? It is easy to brag on our clones, but how many changed hearts that can work independently for Christ (and Christ alone) have you trained?

William Cary, Hudson Taylor, and David Livingstone etc. etc. are foundational missionaries. They were not clones. Where other missionaries stayed within the English coastal cities, these men went inland on their own initiative. They were always opposed by the traditionalist clones. They struck out on their own with little support, but full dependence in their faith in Christ. I'm told there are no missionaries willing to go it alone into the spiritually dead areas today. There are plenty looking for assignments by the big mission agencies. There are plenty more looking for a parsonage and salary. Everything today must be big if it is going to work (so they believe). Success is based on the amount of  money expended. Positive statistics are easily manipulated.

I saw an old Christian film titled "The Gospel Blimp" which has proved quite prophetic over time. Today, the clones are buying the Gospel Blimps rather then going out in faith. Were they to consider their ways, they would see it's all for nothing. A waste of time and money. A lukewarm effort by the admiration societies of Christianity who pat themselves on the back for what they self proclaim as great revivals. The wasted Blimps of lukewarm Christianity is the truth of what they do. The real purpose of God for the Christians of today is to be separated from the apostasy of this age. This is that which was not done. The Hollywood spectaculars, the big missionary extravaganzas, the big organizations and ministries producing the clones of today. They have no doctrinal discipline. They birthed the Great Apostate Church of today that will go into the Tribulation. This is what was done. A phony Christianity as exemplified by the Benny Hinn's, Pat Robertson's, Bill Clinton's etc. etc. is the main stream today. The Evangelicals have sold their souls for their own purposes. All this error that has produced the apostasy monster of today's Christianity is cast at their feet. It is not God's purpose for today that all the phony Christianity should rule! The wrong thing has been done, and the separation that should have been guided by Biblical doctrine was left undone!

Let me make one last comment on this issue. The difference between the revivals of the past, and what is happening today is very clear. There is no hidden secret about the difference. Jonathan Edwards, George Whitefield, etc. etc. join William Cary, Hudson Taylor etc. etc. in that they all recognized apostasy and stood apart from it. They separated themselves, and all who were kindred with them from the apostasy of their day. The measuring stick for them remains unchanged in false doctrine today. It is the Roman Catholic Church! This apostate Church has not changed from the days of those great men to the present, but the attitude of today's Evangelical Christianity has changed! All the great missionaries and revivalists of the past stood opposed to the poison (the anthrax) of the Roman Catholic. Today, their dogmatic stand is presented as their weakness. Today the building of super Christianity no matter how much apostasy comes with it is all that matters. The death of Biblical Christianity is of no consequence today.

1 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. 2 And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

The Holy Bible : King James Version. 1995 (Ro 12:1-2). Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.

 

Mark my words that we (our generation of Christianity) will stand at the Bema of Christ guilty of having failed to separate from apostasy! It will be why the Church age had to be drawn to a close. It will be our lukewarm complacency that caused the Church's testimony to suffer irreparable damage. We, like that last generation of Jews  in Christ's day will have failed to the point of irreparable damage to the cause of our God. Nothing short of a dispensational change could or can rectify the damage done then and now. Others had to be raised up untarnished by the testimony of the former. New children of God separated from the former was the only solution. New foundations had to be laid because of the extent of corruption. Israel had to step aside for the Christian Church. A New Testament had to be written for a new dispensation. Today, the Church must step aside for Israel. Nothing short of another dispensation can rectify the problem. This time there will be no need for a newer testament to be written. The fullness of the Old Testament through Israel will finally be realized. The law will be finished and fulfilled in Christ's Second return. The Kingdom will come, and God's will be done.

The Church must step aside so the Kingdom of he Old Testament can come!

"Thus saith the LORD of hosts; Consider your ways"

This is the LORD of hosts speaking. The God of war. The God of victory. The God of the Bible who's very attributes make no provision for failure in battle. His Kingdom will prevail. Should but eight out of billions be the only recipients, His Kingdom plan will be victorious. Should but a remnant of Gentiles submit and survive - so be the victory. The LORD of hosts has made the proclamation. It is He who said "consider your ways!" It is He who says should all of Islam have to be destroyed My Temple will be built! His Kingdom come; His will be done!

 

III. Haggai 1:8

Go, Go, Build the Temple Now!

8 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.
 

The whole purpose of the First Return to which Haggai was sent was to build the Temple. Judaism means nothing without the Temple! The Temple was always the original plan for Israel and the land. There is only one permanent place on planet earth where God said blood sacrifice was to be given. Altars of sacrifice were many and mobile until the First Temple was built.  From that point on, the place of sacrifice became singular. The same Temple emphases for the same purpose is soon to be presented to this present Second Return of the Jews to Israel, Jerusalem, and the Temple Mount. The fullness of the Kingdom can only come bathed in the blood of kosher sacrifice at the Altar of the Temple.  It is why the building of the Temple had the priority that it had and will have again. The Messiah and the Temple are one and the same in God's plan for the coming Kingdom. Blood sacrifice must be exemplified to the world correctly. There is only one place on earth where God has declared blood sacrifice would be proper. It was and is in Jerusalem at the Temple Mount where the Altar is to be located. The Temple was the centerpiece of everything Jewish during the first coming of the Jews to the land of Israel, then again after the first return, and now again at the present second return it awaits it's destiny. Haggai here puts the emphases on the physical building of the Second Temple.

"Go up to the mountain, and bring wood, and build the house;" 

I lived in Montana. I know what it's like to go into the mountains for wood. Some of the men in my men's Bible Study invited me to go along on a firewood excursion to re-supply the older folks for the coming winter. They were the professionals, and I was just the guy from Chicago. We parked our pick-ups on the side of the switchback mountain road, and climbed up a ridge to where one of the biggest snags I ever saw was waiting for us. I realized things were not going well when the tree fell the opposite direction from which we intended. Unhindered, the men proceeded to cut it into 18 inch slices. My job was to roll the first slice down to the pick-ups where we intended to split it. All seemed so simple until the slice started rolling faster then I could hold it back. I had to leave it go when the choice was death or pride. We watched it gather momentum as it headed right for the pick-ups. I suppose it was because we were on a righteous cause that this four foot / 18 inch slice miraculously went right between two of the trucks on it's way freight-training down the mountain.  I lost sight of it after a while, but watched as dust would fly, trees would shake and fall in it's distant path down the slope of the great divide. It may still be rolling down that mountain somewhere, and if you should go driving in the mountains of Montana - please keep your eyes and ears open!

I don't know what kind of crews went into the mountains of Israel, but I'm sure there were adventures as they undertook the hard work of gathering the wood for the Temple.

"Go up" is a qal imperative "You will go up" a command! Seventeen years was long enough time to wait, now comes the call to action "Go," "bring," "build." They were not to wait another day.

Notice how God accomplishes His will. Here persuasion was enough, but had the Jews not been persuaded God would still have accomplished the task in spite of their resistance. He could just raise up another generation more tender hearted to His desires. In this instance incurring disfavor from God was motivation enough.

God's will was always very clear to me as a pastor, but I could not always persuade bigoted hearts that God is color blind. The resistors were the victors in one Church in particular. I watched as other Churches down the road experienced the miracle of redemption among the lost. All we attracted was other resistors from other Churches. Our growth was a way to be considered! It is hard work to go up to the mountains, it means getting dirty, it means adjusting to new conditions, it means working with the local inhabitants, but the rewards are always worth the effort. I was hurt to the core when that Church accused me of heresy among other things (all untrue - all not dealing with the real problem of black children coming to our AWANA program). I never stopped trying to persuade, and they had no compulsion in breaking my heart. Losing a ministry is a terrible experience. Watching the resistors win is difficult to accept. However, God's will is never thwarted. Others gain the blessings, and experience the real victories. It is always far better not to resist, but to be willing to change. To go to the mountains as God would desire. To "go," "bring," and "build."

"and I will take pleasure in it, and I will be glorified, saith the LORD."

Hag 1:8
God promised at the outset that obedience would meet with his approval. In brief, Haggai is declaring, "Obey God, and his blessing and approbation will be yours." I will be glorified. Here is proof that God was concerned, as was Haggai, with the spiritual aspects of the rebuilding. Solomon had prayed (1 Kings 8:30)that God might be magnified through the worship of His people. When they neglected this activity of their spiritual life, barrenness resulted. The Babylonian Talmud claimed that five things were lacking in the Temple of Zerubabel which were found in the first Temple: (1) the Shekinah glory, (2) the holy fire, (3) the ark of the covenant, (4) the Urim and Thummim, and (5) the spirit of prophecy (probably the Holy Spirit). Whatever may have been wanting in the restoration Temple, God unequivocally promised that his blessing would be there.
(from The Wycliffe Bible Commentary, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1962 by Moody Press)
 

When those 70 years plus who remembered Solomon's Temple (the First Temple) saw the Ezra/Nehemiah (more correctly the Joshua/Zerubbabel) Temple (the Second Temple) they cried because it came so far short in appearance of what the First Temple was like. God said it did not matter for He would take pleasure in it. We should always do our best for the Lord, but when our best is not as good as what others do we should never be ashamed. God takes pleasure in the grass roofed Church of Africa as much as He does with the great edifices of the wealthy. God took great pleasure in the tabernacle of the wilderness (a tent) which He graced with His presents. The heart, the attitude is where God finds His pleasure.

My first Church in Whitefish, Montana was a rented saddle clubhouse. I learned something there. The smell of the Saturday night booze parties was overwhelming for our Sunday morning services. Whole cans of scent spray could not overcome the that evil sickly smell of rotted grain and fruit called fermentation. One of the ladies started bringing flowers from her garden that she would place around our makeshift pulpit. What cans of scent could not overcome, a few vases of flowers were able to erase within an hour. God took pleasure in that old log building for a few hours every Sunday morning. I often contemplated how God must feel as He looks down on this world of sin. It must be a putrid smell that rises to His presents. What a privilege that we can allow a sweet savor to find it's way to Him. That He can take pleasure in something that comes from our heart.

Gen 8:20-21
20And Noah builded an altar unto the LORD; and took of every clean beast, and of every clean fowl, and offered burnt offerings on the altar.

21And the LORD smelled a sweet savour; and the LORD said in his heart, I will not again curse the ground any more for man's sake; for the imagination of man's heart is evil from his youth; neither will I again smite any more every thing living, as I have done.
KJV

Num 15:3
3And will make an offering by fire unto the LORD, a burnt offering, or a sacrifice in performing a vow, or in a freewill offering, or in your solemn feasts, to make a sweet savour unto the LORD, of the herd, or of the flock:
KJV
 

I think the freewill offerings were always of special fragrance while the Temples stood. They were given not out of necessity, or for favor, or from obligation. The freewill offering was provided for one who just wanted to say "LORD, I love you." A sweet savor rising up from all the filth is a special moment that will always be cherished by those who experience such pleasures on both sides of the offering. I can think of nothing in the life of a mortal worth more then the privilege of giving God a moment of pleasure. A sweet smell which only can come from the heart is worth more then all the gold in all the Cathedrals of all time. It is something you can experience if you know Christ as savior.

The Jews of the First Return were given the privilege to send God a sweet savor.  Haggai persuaded, but they did it. They went up to the mountains, brought the wood, and built the Second Jewish Temple on the same Temple Mount where the First Temple stood! God expressed His premature feelings of pleasure through Haggai. He also said something else that was of great significant. He said: "and I will be glorified, saith the LORD."

The Glory of God is something that only the most spiritual, the most humble, the ones who seek the most to understand the eternity of the God of the Bible, ever discover. Read, and you will find every great saint of the past and present acknowledge that this - the Glory of God - is the ultimate purpose of everything past, present, and future! Everything, everything, everything, is summed up in the Glory of God! There is no greater place to go. It is the end of all intellectual pursuit. The greater end then even the universe which is paled by the concept of the Glory of God!

Here - Haggai tells the Jews of the first return that God Himself says that this glory of which I just spoke was going to be manifest at some moment in time in the very building they were in the process of building! The ultimate purpose of everything - everything, even beyond the confines of creation itself - was going to honor their labor by revealing this glory in their Temple.

The Temple is not just some religious building. It is much more. It has only one spot where it can stand. It is here, and no other place where the Glory of God will be revealed. It is a place of blood! A house of sacrifice! A house of prayer! There is nothing that could have a higher priority then the building of this house. It is God's House!

Outwardly it would not be as great as the first Temple, but it would be to this house that the Lord Jesus Christ would come!

Luke 2:25-40
5And, behold, there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon; and the same man was just and devout, waiting for the consolation of Israel: and the Holy Ghost was upon him.
26And it was revealed unto him by the Holy Ghost, that he should not see death, before he had seen the Lord's Christ.
27And he came by the Spirit into the temple: and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to do for him after the custom of the law,
28Then took he him up in his arms, and blessed God, and said,
29Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, according to thy word:
30For mine eyes have seen thy salvation,
31Which thou hast prepared before the face of all people;
32A light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of thy people Israel.
33And Joseph and his mother marvelled at those things which were spoken of him.
34And Simeon blessed them, and said unto Mary his mother, Behold, this child is set for the fall and rising again of many in Israel; and for a sign which shall be spoken against;
35(Yea, a sword shall pierce through thy own soul also,) that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed.
 

36And there was one Anna, a prophetess, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Aser: she was of a great age, and had lived with an husband seven years from her virginity;
37And she was a widow of about fourscore and four years, which departed not from the temple, but served God with fastings and prayers night and day.
38And she coming in that instant gave thanks likewise unto the Lord, and spake of him to all them that looked for redemption in Jerusalem.
39And when they had performed all things according to the law of the Lord, they returned into Galilee, to their own city Nazareth.
40And the child grew, and waxed strong in spirit, filled with wisdom: and the grace of God was upon him.
KJV
 

IV Haggai 1:9-11

Another Warning if Temple not Built

9 Ye looked for much, and, lo, it came to little; and when ye brought it home, I did blow upon it. Why? saith the LORD of hosts. Because of mine house that is waste, and ye run every man unto his own house.

10 Therefore the heaven over you is stayed from dew, and the earth is stayed from her fruit.

11 And I called for a drought upon the land, and upon the mountains, and upon the corn, and upon the new wine, and upon the oil, and upon that which the ground bringeth forth, and upon men, and upon cattle, and upon all the labour of the hands.
KJV

"Ye looked for much, and, lo, it came to little;"

A repeated theme of their continued frustration for not building God's house. A universal theme to all who find life unfulfilling. The richest, the smartest, the heads of industry all admit at the end that they were unfulfilled. They always wanted just one more dollar, one more discovery, one more acquisition. Only those lives given to Christ find peace.

Here the Prophet relates again, that the Jews were deprived of support, and that they in a manner pined away in their distress, because they robbed God of the worship due to him. He first repeats the fact, Ye have looked for much, but behold little. It may happen that one is contented with a very slender portion, because much is not expected. They who are satisfied with their own penury are not anxious though their portion of food is but scanty, though they are constrained to feed on acorns. Those who are become hardened in enduring evils, do not seek much; but they who desire much, are more touched and vexed by their penury. This is the reason why the Prophet says, Ye have looked for much, and, behold, there was but little; that is, “Ye are not like the peasants, who satisfy themselves with any sort of food, and are not troubled on account of their straitened circumstances; but your desire has led you to seek abundance. Hence ye seek and greedily lay hold on things on every side; but, behold, it comes to little.”

Calvin, J. (2000). Calvin's Commentaries (electronic ed.). electronic ed. (Hag 1:9). Garland, TX: Galaxie Software.

Robbing God is strong language by a wise Calvin. Those guilty most always excuse away their action. They usually crawl down in the gutter finding those even worse then themselves then hold up as high their attitudes, and therefore appear not so guilty of robbing God His due. They think themselves much when the God of truth sees little. Today the Neo-Evangelicals embrace the Roman Catholics and Charismatics telling all it is much. They love to number their mutual admiration ministries. An end time movement of the greatest revival in all Christian history is how they present themselves to the world. They make comparisons to the great revivalists of the past. They lie! They've crawled into the gutter of lies claiming themselves much by uniting with apostates, when the real revivalists of the past separated themselves from the same apostates. The God of truth sees little at the rapture out of such great apostasy built on today's Christianity. Just as it was in the days of Noah, only a few come through the flood of judgment. The rest are going to be left behind!

They are never content with God's method of  reaching the lost. They make unholy alliances that let in the flood of apostasy so the numbers can be great. They pat each other on the back telling all how pleased God is in their works! They were looking for much, but behold it is little!

Matt 24:37-39
37But as the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.

38For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark,

39And knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.
KJV
 

The Jews brought home their wealth. The Christians of today brought home their great numbers. God blew upon it as separating the wheat from the chaff. Behold, it mostly all did blow away. Most all of the millions or billions of the old PTL evangelistic works, the 700 Club, the Benny Hinn crusades of this generation will be left behind. They were not won to Christ. They were won to the Charismatic movement of signs and miracles. The Jews found their wealth and materialistic expectations worthless under God's scrutiny. So also will the Charismatic gospel prove worthless. It is the LORD of hosts who blows, who examines, who makes judgment. It is the LORD of hosts who separates the truth from the lie, the wheat from the chaff, the tares from the real children of God, those who believe in Christ by faith and those who's faith is in false mysticism. It is the LORD of hosts mighty in battle who judges for destruction those who must have mystic lies added to the gospel of Christ.

Gal 1:6-8
6I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel:

7Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ.

8But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed.
KJV
 

Is this end times claim of the greatest revival in Christian history, or is it like the times of Noe? There is only one truth! Is Benny Hinn another George Whitfield (who exposed the Roman Catholic gospel as blasphemy), or is he a usurper making claims that are really a lie? Are his miracle healings, and those of the  PTL network, and those of the 700 club, like the real miracles found in the Bible? Or, are they the imagined lies of those bent on signs and wonders? The Jews of Christ's day committed the same apostate error as today's Charismatic. They require a sign! They also will be left (behind) by Christ. The Lord will also depart from them when the rapture takes place.

Matt 16:4
4A wicked and adulterous generation seeketh after a sign; and there shall no sign be given unto it, but the sign of the prophet Jonas. And he left them, and departed.
KJV

1 Cor 1:22-24
22For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom:

23But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumblingblock, and unto the Greeks foolishness;

24But unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God.
KJV
 

Matt 7:22-23
22Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?

23And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.
KJV
 

The reason why there was little after the Lord blew upon it is again revealed by the LORD of hosts. "On account of my house which is desolate." Today, God's house is just as desolate. Every kind of phony Christianity has entered. The phony Catholics with their phony rites, and distorted prayers to Mary and the saints. The phony Charismatics with their phony healings, their phony casting out of devils, their phony holy language, all makes God's house desolate. The phony Evangelicals who welcomed apostasy into God's house are probably the most guilty of making it desolate. They knew what God had said about maintaining His house, but they thought they knew better then God how to get the numbers. They knew better then God how to evangelize! They knew better then God how to be successful in reaching the world. They pat each other on the backs for the great numbers they have produced in this today's Christianity, but when God blows it all goes by the wayside! The house is suddenly revealed as desolate!

2 Cor 6:16-17
16And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.

17Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you,
KJV

The Evangelicals thought themselves wise, but it was the world's wisdom that caused God's house to become desolate. This is why the rapture is going to happen soon. This abomination that no longer considers Roman Catholicism as a mission field has lost the true testimony of Christ. This abomination who's leaders such as Billy Graham say "that those who may not even know the name of Jesus will be in heaven" must be moved aside. This abomination that embraces the emotional ecstasies formerly practiced by only the pagans has made God's house desolate. Those who were responsible for keeping God's house separate from all these abominations; who were not to touch the unclean thing, have become the generation that ended the testimony of 2000 years of Christianity. The world looks, and can't tell who is saved and who is phony. "Born again" has been highjacked by the apostates. The foolish thought they were so smart that they could by subtly trick the apostates into getting saved have instead caused the house to become desolate. The apostates now use "born again" for their own purposes. They build great ministries. They have become exceedingly rich such as has never been seen in Christianity before. 

"and ye run every man unto his own house."  the Jews to whom Haggai wrote had their own houses built, but they left the Lord's house desolate. They were rich, and God would have to accept only the service they were willing to give. They laid the foundations for the Temple in April/May 536 BC, but nothing else had been done now some 17 years later. The Lord is very longsuffering, but there are limits to His patients. The Jews of that generation found those limits. This generation of Christians are going to find the limits to which the Lord will allow also.

It is difficult for me to be a voice of chastening when disinformation is so freely used by today's Christianity. I remember "I found it" back in Bible School days. It was the first nation wide evangelistic effort by the Evangelicals. It was well organized even in Montana. It was the first media (TV) extravaganza aimed at presenting "born again" Christianity to all the USA in one big TV spectacular. I did not participate because the local promoter lied to me. He told me I would get all the local inquiries for salvation that would come from those responding to the TV invitation. I later found he said the same thing to some of the liberal denominational ministers, and even the Roman Catholic Priests. The next thing I remember was the Hollywood starlet headlining the spectacular who professed being "born again" was getting a divorce, but they were sticking with her anyway. The contracts had been signed, and it was just too late to make a change. The last thing I remember is Bill Bright admitting that the follow-up showed that those Churches which stood on "born again" Christianity did not show any more then their normal growth during and after "I found it," but the dead liberal denominations and Catholic Church did experience some growth. Bill Bright has gone on to bigger and more expensive spectaculars opening the door to this new style of evangelism. The disinformation made the divorce an example of God's forgiveness, and the no-growth was blamed on the theory that the inquirers were not told to make Jesus King. They only accepted Him, but did not put Him on the throne of their heart. They assured all they would never make that mistake again. They also never did any before and after statistical surveys again. They would only publish the great numbers of those who called for salvation. They only were interested in professing Christians not possessing Christians. The disinformation era began. The foundation for the great apostate Church of the Revelation was laid. The rich Laodicean Church that is cold nor hot but lukewarm began to thrive. The Church that the Lord said He would spew from His mouth is now come to it's fullness. It is not built on truth, but on disinformation. The Lord did blow, and nothing but a desolate house was the result. The great majority did not make the rapture, but were left behind as the chaff of apostasy.

 

Haggai 1:10

The reason why the promised blessings were being withheld was because God's house was desolate. There was an appearance of blessings in their own ceiled houses, but the real blessings of God were being withheld.

A common occurrence that followed George Whitefield  during the "Great Awakening" revival was that the taverns in the towns where he preached would close. It was not because hatchet Annie followed him, but rather because the patrons just stopped coming. The long haired, drum pounding, guitar twanging contemporary Christian artists are possibly the best example of converts to this modern day revival of the Charismatics and Evangelicals. It is a shameful testimony of how long they remain clean, if even they ever experience a day of cleanliness?  These artists are in and out, and then back in the world of sin as every teenaged fan should well know. This modern revival is a lie! It is more the building of the Apostate Church of the Revelation then the true Church of God. The only ones claiming revival are the money changers who are a mutual admiration society with their Dove Awards and other such disgusting practices. The real blessings of God are not found in their earthly awards. The ceiled houses of today's Christianity is lacking when it comes to real Biblical blessings!

 

Haggai 1 :11

The Second Message of Haggai concludes with the continued theme of promised blessings withheld because God's house remains desolate.

Elijah is an interesting study. He also called a drought upon the earth. He also was connected to the Temple. Ahab and his wife Jezebel built a false Temple on mount Gerizim. A substitute to the only Temple of God at Samaria their substitute city for Jerusalem. Their Temple was a place where the gods of Baal were welcome. They had no fear of touching the unclean things. The life of Elijah is the life of the man God called to rebuke this false Temple, in this false city, on this false mount. The falsehood lingered into the days of Christ as the woman of Samaria so well exemplifies.

John 4:20
20Our fathers worshipped in this mountain; and ye say, that in Jerusalem is the place where men ought to worship.
KJV
 

The shutting up of heaven is an occurrence with direct links to the Temple. It occurs here in Haggai. It occurred in the days of Elijah when an attempt to shift  Jewish worship to a false temple was in progress.

James 5:17-18
17Elias was a man subject to like passions as we are, and he prayed earnestly that it might not rain: and it rained not on the earth by the space of three years and six months.

18And he prayed again, and the heaven gave rain, and the earth brought forth her fruit.
KJV

It is no little thing that it was for three years and six months that Elijah withheld the rain. Others are coming connected to the Temple who also will shut up  heaven for this same period of time!

Rev 11:6
6These have power to shut heaven, that it rain not in the days of their prophecy: and have power over waters to turn them to blood, and to smite the earth with all plagues, as often as they will.
KJV
 

How long will these Two Witnesses of the Revelation prophecy?

Rev 11:3
3And I will give power unto my two witnesses, and they shall prophesy a thousand two hundred and threescore days, clothed in sackcloth.
KJV

Rev 11:7
7And when they shall have finished their testimony, the beast that ascendeth out of the bottomless pit shall make war against them, and shall overcome them, and kill them.
KJV

Folks, a thousand two hundred and threescore days is exactly three years and six months! The link to the Temple is unmistakable. The Testimony of the Two Witnesses that is finished at the end of this period, I'm convinced, is the Third Jewish Temple (Ezekiel's Temple of Ezekiel 40 - 48). These Two Jewish Witnesses who never leave Jerusalem will have a mandate from God to build His house in 3 1/2 years. The beast then kills them, and the abomination of desolation enters this Holy House and desecrates it for the last half of the 7 year Tribulation bringing in the Time of Jacob's Trouble!
 

The purpose God has brought the Jews back in our generation is to build this Third Jewish Temple. I'm convinced it will be the witness, the testimony, the prophecy of the Two Jewish Witnesses of Revelation. The tie between these Two Witnesses of the Third Temple, and Joshua and Zerubbabel of the Second Temple will become clear in the coming messages of Haggai!

Ezekiel's Temple will have an altar for sacrifice. The blood will be washed into a spring that will flow from under this altar. The spring will flow becoming a mighty river of life! It will cleanse the earth of all pollution resulting from 7 years of battle where all the hate of sin filled man and Satan will have been released on this earth. The volumes of water coming from under the Altar will never be able to dilute the power in the blood that will mingle! This mighty flow is only associated with Ezekiel's Temple. The Temple I believe the Two Witnesses of the Revelation will build by direct revelation from God.


Ezek 47:1
47:1Afterward he brought me again unto the door of the house; and, behold, waters issued out from under the threshold of the house eastward: for the forefront of the house stood toward the east, and the waters came down from under from the right side of the house, at the south side of the altar.
KJV

Ezek 47:4-12
4Again he measured a thousand, and brought me through the waters; the waters were to the knees. Again he measured a thousand, and brought me through; the waters were to the loins.
5Afterward he measured a thousand; and it was a river that I could not pass over: for the waters were risen, waters to swim in, a river that could not be passed over.
6And he said unto me, Son of man, hast thou seen this? Then he brought me, and caused me to return to the brink of the river.
7Now when I had returned, behold, at the bank of the river were very many trees on the one side and on the other.
8Then said he unto me, These waters issue out toward the east country, and go down into the desert, and go into the sea: which being brought forth into the sea, the waters shall be healed.
9And it shall come to pass, that every thing that liveth, which moveth, whithersoever the rivers shall come, shall live: and there shall be a very great multitude of fish, because these waters shall come thither: for they shall be healed; and every thing shall live whither the river cometh.
10And it shall come to pass, that the fishers shall stand upon it from En-gedi even unto En-eglaim; they shall be a place to spread forth nets; their fish shall be according to their kinds, as the fish of the great sea, exceeding many.
11But the miry places thereof and the marishes thereof shall not be healed; they shall be given to salt.
12And by the river upon the bank thereof, on this side and on that side, shall grow all trees for meat, whose leaf shall not fade, neither shall the fruit thereof be consumed: it shall bring forth new fruit according to his months, because their waters they issued out of the sanctuary: and the fruit thereof shall be for meat, and the leaf thereof for medicine.
KJV
 

It is no wonder that when they pierced the heart of Christ both blood and water flowed. It pointed to a future day when water and blood will mingle to cleanse this old polluted planet from all the woes brought upon it by sin. It will always point to the blood of Christ which is the only power ever revealed as being able to cleanse away sin forever!

John 19:34
34But one of the soldiers with a spear pierced his side, and forthwith came there out blood and water.
KJV

Rev 1:7-8
7Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they also which pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him. Even so, Amen.

8I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty.
KJV
 

Today may be the day for you to come to this Jesus? It is to Him you must go, for only He administers the cleansing power found in His sacrificial blood. He is plenteous of mercy, and ready to save!

 

Drop me an e-mail. I'm always ready to help. ddsrail@hotmail.com


Edited by DDSrail November 8, 2001

Back to Haggai

 Back to Golden Calf