by: Timothy Vazquez
Haggai 2:4b (NLT) Be strong, all you people still left in the land. And now get to work, for I am with you, says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies.
The remnant of the people that came back to the promised land after the Babylonian exile were challenged by God to rebuild His Temple. The people had forgotten about God's house and were busy building their own houses. What that means is that they were concerned only about their own affairs and not about the things of God. The Lord sent a message through the Prophet Haggai to correct this. He was letting the people know that the reason that they were not prospering and that the land was not being productive was that they were neglecting His house.
After hearing the prophetic word from Haggai, the leaders and the people began to obey the word of the Lord and began to reverence Him again. They got enthusiastic about the idea of rebuilding the house of the Lord and they began the work. As they were working, it seems that the new Temple was not as big and as magnificent as the old Temple was. But the Lord encouraged them with another prophetic word, telling them that the future glory of the Temple would far surpass the former glory that it had. He spoke to them the words that we read above. He was encouraging them to stay strong and to get to it because He was with them.
During this pandemic that we have faced for many months now, churches have struggled, with many of them still not able to meet because of either government mandates or because of people being afraid to gather together. It has been quite a ride and a sad one at that as many have dropped off in attending even online services. But I believe that the Lord wants to encourage us today. I believe that the Lord is setting things up for those who will not give up because He will do more glorious things through His church than we have previously experienced. When the people of God put their trust in Him and are attentive to Him and to the things of heaven instead of the things of the world, there is always more glory to be experienced. God ALWAYS moves things from glory to ever-increasing glory (2 Corinthians 3:18).
The Lord wants to encourage your heart today. He wants to encourage the hearts of all that have remained faithful to Him. Let's be strong in Him and get to work, for the Lord is with us and we will be sure to experience more of His glory in the days to come!
Pastor Joey Vazquez