Today the Lord tells Haggai to encourage the people to get back to rebuilding the temple. “‘Yet now be strong, Zerubbabel,’ says the Lord; ‘and be strong, Joshua, son of Jehozadak, the high priest; and be strong, all you people of the land,’ says the Lord, ‘and work; for I am with you,’ says the Lord of hosts. ‘According to the word that I covenanted with you when you came out of Egypt, so My Spirit remains among you; do not fear!’”
About a month into the rebuilding, Haggai tells the people that “The glory of this latter temple shall be greater than the former” so they are not to worry about comparing it to the old temple. The outside structure is not what makes something great, it is the Lord’s presence.
God calls the people to consider their current situation since they resumed rebuilding the temple. Although it has been a tough road the Lord says, “But from this day I will bless you.” The Lord promises an abundant harvest for His people who are now walking in obedience.
We also hear from Zechariah, a priest who returned from Babylon with Zerubbabel. We read 7 visions that the Lord gave Zechariah, which all communicate that the Lord is restoring His people. In the 4th vision, Joshua, the high priest, is standing before the angel in filthy clothes and Satan is there to oppose him. The Lord rebukes Satan and says to Joshua, “See, I have removed your iniquity from you, and I will clothe you with rich robes.” The Lord goes on to say, “For behold, I am bringing forth My Servant the BRANCH.” Jesus Christ is the Servant who is coming to die for us so that we too will be clean, washed white as snow, before the Lord. As illustrated in the last vision, our sins will be taken away and the Lord’s people will be freed from their sin so they can faithfully serve Him.
Tomorrow another attempt is made to shut down the rebuilding. Keep reading to see if the opposers succeed.
(Haggai 2:1-9, Zechariah 1:1-6, Haggai 2:10-19, Ezra 5:2, Haggai 2:20-23, Zechariah 1:7-5:11)