First Baptist Church of Minneola
Hands on in August: The Exhortation
  • A dream doesn't become reality through magic; it takes sweat, determination and hard work.--Colin Powell
    INTRO - The historical time of Haggai notes the restoration of the Jewish people in Palestine.
    The restoration period began in 539 B.C. when Cyrus became king by his conquering of Babylon.
    EST - God commands rebuild the Temple.
    ESS - We’ll consider the people’s complacency and the Lord’s chastisement.
    OSS - We’ll see what the Bible teaches us and seek to know how we must respond.
    TRANS - Before we begin, let’s travel back to the period before the restoration.
    Let’s travel way back and look at some of the highlights of what God has done up to this point in history.
    Say, “how far pastor?” all the way to Genesis.
    Pretty far back as we can go?
    In Genesis we see God creates the world:
    Adam and Eve
    Fall, Flood, and tower of Babel
    Patariarchs
    2100ish Abraham, God changes his name from Abram to the plural Abraham
    2150ish Isaac, name means “will laugh” as Sarah laughed at the thought of having a baby at her age; Abraham might had a good laugh too.
    2075ish Jacob, son of Isaac and Rebecca, name changed to Isreal, father of the 12 tribes.
    1875ish Joeseph, Isreal favored son, taken as a slave to Egypt.
    1800 something Egyptian slavery
    Moses leads people Egypt
    40 years wilderness
    Settlement of Canaan
    Judges
    Kings
    Saul
    David
    Solomon
    Temple built
    Kingdom Split
    Fall of Samaria
    Elijah, Elisha, Jonah, Amos, Hosea, Isaiah, Micah
    Over hundred years
    Zephaniah, Jeremiah, Nahum, Habakkuk
    Daniel
    Exile
    Dedication of Second Temple
    Haggai

    What does it say?

    Haggai 1:1–11 NASB95
    In the second year of Darius the king, on the first day of the sixth month, the word of the Lord came by the prophet Haggai to Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and to Joshua the son of Jehozadak, the high priest, saying, “Thus says the Lord of hosts, ‘This people says, “The time has not come, even the time for the house of the Lord to be rebuilt.” ’ ” Then the word of the Lord came by Haggai the prophet, saying, “Is it time for you yourselves to dwell in your paneled houses while this house lies desolate?” Now therefore, thus says the Lord of hosts, “Consider your ways! “You have sown much, but harvest little; you eat, but there is not enough to be satisfied; you drink, but there is not enough to become drunk; you put on clothing, but no one is warm enough; and he who earns, earns wages to put into a purse with holes.” Thus says the Lord of hosts, “Consider your ways! “Go up to the mountains, bring wood and rebuild the temple, that I may be pleased with it and be glorified,” says the Lord. You look for much, but behold, it comes to little; when you bring it home, I blow it away. Why?” declares the Lord of hosts, “Because of My house which lies desolate, while each of you runs to his own house. “Therefore, because of you the sky has withheld its dew and the earth has withheld its produce. “I called for a drought on the land, on the mountains, on the grain, on the new wine, on the oil, on what the ground produces, on men, on cattle, and on all the labor of your hands.”

    What does it mean?

    The entire book of Haggai is two short chapters delivered from August to December 539 B.C.
    The words found in Ezra give us the political background for this book:
    Ezra 1:1–3 NASB95
    Now in the first year of Cyrus king of Persia, in order to fulfill the word of the Lord by the mouth of Jeremiah, the Lord stirred up the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia, so that he sent a proclamation throughout all his kingdom, and also put it in writing, saying: “Thus says Cyrus king of Persia, ‘The Lord, the God of heaven, has given me all the kingdoms of the earth and He has appointed me to build Him a house in Jerusalem, which is in Judah. ‘Whoever there is among you of all His people, may his God be with him! Let him go up to Jerusalem which is in Judah and rebuild the house of the Lord, the God of Israel; He is the God who is in Jerusalem.
    Our messages this week and next focus on God telling people to us “hands” and “Build.”

    Lord’s Pronounced Command

    Haggai 1:8 NASB95
    “Go up to the mountains, bring wood and rebuild the temple, that I may be pleased with it and be glorified,” says the Lord.
    God tells the people to get to work with their hands.
    The text says “rebuild.”
    The word here rebuild “banah” is a verb that means to build, build up, rebuild, or construct.
    ILL - This past Wednesday I got a call from a fellow who I’ve spoken with about the strategy we spent the last year researching. We’ve consulted with the finest minds in our seminaries. We conducted detailed demographics.
    The Bible says seek wise console:
    Proverbs 19:20 The Message
    Take good counsel and accept correction— that’s the way to live wisely and well.
    According to what I read, we must act on good counsel.
    The man I spoke with is not a member of this church, but is a Christian who wants to reach souls for Jesus.
    To be clear, he understood the hard work we did to find out what we must do in order for God to grow this church.
    He knows we have the wise counsel and took time to consider helping.
    After some time to pray and consider, he presented the church a check to cover most of the costs to improve the curb appeal of our church.
    Now, here is were you come into this chance to do what God says.
    Every hand is needed.
    Can you operate a water hose, know how to use a cleaning brush, operate a paint brush, spread mulch, or plant a bush?
    Just as the temple needed rebuilding, this campus needs hands on attention.
    TRANS - We see this passage starts with God’s command.
    How do you suppose the people responded?

    Lord’s People’s Complacency

    I wish I could say the people said, “Oh, I’ve been praying God tell me what you want me to do. I am on it God.”
    The people cared more for their own interests than what God wanted them to do with their hands.
    Haggai 1:2 NASB95
    “Thus says the Lord of hosts, ‘This people says, “The time has not come, even the time for the house of the Lord to be rebuilt.” ’ ”
    ILL - How many people ask God to give them direction? Does God ask for too much?
    In this passage we see God commanding and making available everything needed to do what He commands.
    Illustrations for Biblical Preaching Communication

    There is a story about a man who wanted to train his mule. The first thing he did was to pick up a big stick and hit the mule a resounding wallop between the ears. As the mule staggered about, someone said to the owner, “What is the matter? Why did you do that.” And the man said, “In order to teach a mule, you must first get his attention.”

    That may not be true of mules, but there is a good deal of truth in it when dealing with humans. For any communication to be effective, interest must first be awakened.

    Do you suppose God uses passages like this to wake us up?
    TRANS - we’ve noted God’s command, the propensity of people toward complacency.
    How should God respond?
    Let’s take a look.

    Lord’s Purposeful Chastisement

    Let’s break this down a bit.
    We will look at both God’s reminder and His reassurance.

    God’s Reminder

    Haggai 1:4–6 NASB95
    “Is it time for you yourselves to dwell in your paneled houses while this house lies desolate?” Now therefore, thus says the Lord of hosts, “Consider your ways! “You have sown much, but harvest little; you eat, but there is not enough to be satisfied; you drink, but there is not enough to become drunk; you put on clothing, but no one is warm enough; and he who earns, earns wages to put into a purse with holes.”
    Look, also, at verses 9-11:
    Haggai 1:9–11 NASB95
    You look for much, but behold, it comes to little; when you bring it home, I blow it away. Why?” declares the Lord of hosts, “Because of My house which lies desolate, while each of you runs to his own house. “Therefore, because of you the sky has withheld its dew and the earth has withheld its produce. “I called for a drought on the land, on the mountains, on the grain, on the new wine, on the oil, on what the ground produces, on men, on cattle, and on all the labor of your hands.”
    God is reminding the people that He provides for all their needs.
    Do we sometimes think it all depends on us?
    How frequently I hear people worrying about this church.
    Remember, this is not your church; the church belongs to God.
    We are part of the church, but it is God’s own possession.
    Same with what we have.
    It’s all belongs to God.
    So, don’t worry:
    Matthew 6:34 NASB95
    “So do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.
    God is still in control, but will let you experience all the pain you need to get you to focus on him.
    Two things:

    Our Materialism Mindset

    Haggai 1:4–5 NASB95
    “Is it time for you yourselves to dwell in your paneled houses while this house lies desolate?” Now therefore, thus says the Lord of hosts, “Consider your ways!
    The people live in homes so nice while God’s Temple is in poor condition.
    ILL - Here is a challenge. Who determines the level of acceptable ruin of things that belong to God. What I mean is, do you or I get to tell God what is acceptable or not acceptable?
    Pretty harsh hearing it that way, but isn’t that what is going on here?
    Are the people, by not working with their hands, “God, don’t tell me what needs to be done. It’s my life, my house, my time, my money.”
    How might God respond if you and I were to make this place, and more importantly the condition of our witnessing, priority one in our lives?
    It’s a thought, but I think everything else would fall perfectly into place.

    Our Misery Manifested

    Look again at verse 6:
    Haggai 1:6 NASB95
    “You have sown much, but harvest little; you eat, but there is not enough to be satisfied; you drink, but there is not enough to become drunk; you put on clothing, but no one is warm enough; and he who earns, earns wages to put into a purse with holes.”
    God gives the increase, but God also takes from what they have.
    Hard to put our minds on that.
    God makes life difficult for backsliders.
    Is that because wants to hurt people?
    No, God loves us:
    John 3:16 NKJV
    For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.
    The people attempt things, but fail in everything they do.
    ILL - Ever feel like everything you do is messed up? Like you take three steps forward and two back. Like everything is uphill, falling in, broken…?
    Perhaps God wants to get your attention?
    See, God does not wish His people harm:
    Jeremiah 29:11 NASB95
    ‘For I know the plans that I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope.
    Let’s look at God’s goodness in this passage.

    God’s Reassurance

    Do what God says, and get His blessings.
    Yep, look at the text in verses 7-8 again:
    Haggai 1:7–8 NASB95
    Thus says the Lord of hosts, “Consider your ways! “Go up to the mountains, bring wood and rebuild the temple, that I may be pleased with it and be glorified,” says the Lord.
    Don’t miss that little bit of Bible.
    It’s right there.
    If we consider our ways, that is stop being all about us, and do what God commands, God is pleased and glorified.
    Now, does God who loves you, when He is pleased and glorified bless our punish us?
    What does the Psalmist say:
    Psalm 37:4 NASB95
    Delight yourself in the Lord; And He will give you the desires of your heart.
    What does God’s prophet say:
    Malachi 3:10 NASB95
    “Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, so that there may be food in My house, and test Me now in this,” says the Lord of hosts, “if I will not open for you the windows of heaven and pour out for you a blessing until it overflows.
    What does Jesus say:
    Matthew 6:33 NASB95
    “But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.
    What does Peter remind us to to with our worries:
    1 Peter 5:7 HCSB
    casting all your care on Him, because He cares about you.
    God cares about His people and wants so much to bless you and I just as he did want to bless the Jewish people returning to Palestine.
    TRANS - We noted God’s command to rebuild, how people drift toward compliance, and that God will chastise people because He wants His glory and to bless those He loves.

    How does this knowledge change us?

    The OT is full with application for today’s church.
    The messages that we start today will challenge you and I to rediscover what it is God is speaking to us personally and as a group of believers.
    We break next week for a Liberty Sunday message and return the following to engage with the word of God found in Haggai.
    Commit to reading the book and praying God use this series to help us all know what He wants us to do.
    (end)
      • Haggai 1:1–11NASB95

      • Ezra 1:1–3NASB95

      • Haggai 1:8NASB95

      • Proverbs 19:20NASB95

      • Haggai 1:2NASB95

      • Haggai 1:4–6NASB95

      • Haggai 1:9–11NASB95

      • Matthew 6:34NASB95

      • Haggai 1:4–5NASB95

      • Haggai 1:6NASB95

      • John 3:16NASB95

      • Jeremiah 29:11NASB95

      • Haggai 1:7–8NASB95

      • Psalm 37:4NASB95

      • Malachi 3:10NASB95

      • Matthew 6:33NASB95

      • 1 Peter 5:7NASB95

  • My Jesus I Love Thee

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