Haggai by Dean Gilchrist
There were around fifty thousand Jews that journeyed home after the 70 years of captivity in Babylon. Once arriving in Jerusalem they began work on rebuilding the Temple of the Lord and about two years later completed the foundation amid great rejoicing. This aroused the Samaritans and other neighbors to vigorously oppose the furtherance of the project causing the Jews to halt the work. It was then that the Jews began to look to their own interests, comforts, and housing projects more so than to the Lords house. It was the Jews themselves who were more to blame for this than their opponents, so the Lord gave Haggai the prophet a message to arouse the people of God out of their selfish Laodicean sleepiness.
It was Haggai the prophet along with Zechariah who encouraged the returned exiles to finish the work that they had so fervently began. Haggai explains to them the reasons why they were not being blessed in their new land, and how that it was the consequence of disobedience to the purpose of God that had brought about their poverty both naturally and spiritually.
In Haggai 2 v12-14 he is teaching them by examples from the Levitical law how that holiness cannot be transmitted by connection with a holy garment; yet on the contrary, uncleanness is transferred very easily at just a touch from one thing to another - and so it was with the Jews. Even though they were back in the promised land of their forefathers, it didn’t automatically make them holy. They needed to obey the Lord, particularly with regard to rebuilding the temple, as that was the season that God was calling for this to be accomplished.
It was after the seven Gentile church ages that the people of God (the people of this message) came out of the Babylon of denominational confusion and have journeyed back to the land of the true teaching and understanding of the Word of God - back to the very land that our Pentecostal forefathers inhabited. We have also discovered a great task set before us. There is a temple in this day in need of restoration and completion. This completion is in order to bring the resurrection and the catching away of the bride in the rapture. But as it was in Haggai’s day, many are caught up, not in a rapture, but in their own private and often carnal interests more than they are in the purpose that God has called them to as members of the bride under this message. By this, as it was in Haggai’s day, many dear loved ones have brought a curse upon themselves both spiritually and naturally as God does not change his mind about His Word.
I would like to encourage each one (if you haven’t) to lay down your own wills, ways, and comforts, and make God’s purpose your very own passion.
We can see the world falling apart as in the days of Noah, and we know how that Noah had to finish the ark before the flood could come and carry him and his loved ones over into the new world. So let us not be weary in well doing as there is still much work for us to do as we see the end nearing.
The secret to the completion of this temple lies in each bride member coming into full obedience to every word, as it is full obedience to the full Word of God that entitles us to the literal life of Jesus Christ. The bride (Christ’s body on earth) is the temple we want to see completed in this hour, as she must come to perfection (completion) in order to bring the resurrection of the sleeping saints. This will require Gods literal life in each of us - not a pretend, or some figment of our imagination, but a people that are the very expression and interpretation of every Word that has proceeded out of the mouth of God.
It’s when we as individuals begin to line ourselves up with the Word. It wont be a public show, and don’t look for some great big thing as it is in the small every day things of life where this obedience is most needed, like in our relationships to our wives, children, and fellow man. It is in some of these areas where we fail the most.
This obedience to the Word is not motivated by some list of message rules but by our love for God. Jesus said, “if you love me you will keep my commandments”. A life lived by the Word is the Word expressed - not a people who imagine they are the Word just because they are associated with the message of the hour, but a people that are coming into an agreement and oneness by a love affair and relationship with God through fellowship and communion with Him.
Let us labor for the Master from the dawn till setting sun; Let us talk of all his wondrous love and care, and when all of life is over and our work on earth is done and the roll is called up yonder I’ll be there.