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Bible Commentaries

Bell's Commentary on the Bible

Haggai 1

Verses 1-15

  1. Intro:
    1. We are now Post Babylonian exile.
      1. During the exile Daniel & Ezekiel wrote(no minor prophets).
      2. Now we have 3 minor prophets that write after words(Haggai, Zech, & Malachi...which are the only one’s in chronological order).
      3. The 1st group went back to the land(50,000). [538 bc] Cyrus of Persia issued a decree allowing them to return.
    2. Judah’s wings had been clipped in Babylon!
      1. Ps.74:1,10,19 “O God, why have You cast us off forever?... O God, how long will the adversary reproach?... Oh, do not deliver the life of Your turtledove to the wild beast! Do not forget the life of Your poor(afflicted) forever.”
    3. God had always planned to restore his people to their land.
      1. Jer.29:10,11 “For thus says the LORD: After seventy years are completed at Babylon, I will visit you and perform My good word toward you, and cause you to return to this place. For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.”
    4. When the 1st 50,000 returned to Jerusalem, they built the altar, offered sacrifices, laid the foundation for the temple…but then they left it unfinished for 15 years!
      1. Originally they were stopped by their enemies (read Ezra 1-6)
    5. Book layout:
      1. Haggai is made up of 4 sermonettes in a period of 4 months.
        1. Ch.1 is sermon #1; 2:1-9 is #2; 2:10-19 is #3; 2:20-23 is #4.
    6. Haggai – Hag=festival. (Latin/Festus!)
      1. So possibly he was born on one of their festivals?
      2. His purpose – to be a cheerleader to get the Temple built!
    1. Sermon #1 (1:1-15)
    2. Motivation – Q: What are some ways to motivate someone?
      1. I remember when Mical was a toddler we could motivate her to eat just about anything if we just added a little Ranch Dressing on it.
      2. Haggai needed to motivate them to get back on the job, & to keep them working…till the job was finished!
    3. (2) The excuse!
      1. Excuses always have some merit to them. - In this case crops would still have to be harvested after the 6th month.
    4. (4) Their personal affairs interferes w/Gods business!
      1. We might fall into the same trap today. Is there anything wrong normally with building a home? No! – But if we, in any way, allow God to become #2…then we have a problem!
      2. The theme of this book could be to “Put 1st things 1st!”
      3. Paneled Houses – You might think wood, for less expensive houses; & stone for more expensive homes.
        1. But in the hills of Judah, stones were cheap & wood was a precious commodity!
    5. (5) Consider – Haggai’s recipe for reflection! (1:5, 7; 2:15, 18)
    6. (6) Are you satisfied? – “Dissatisfied can become the divine doorway to deeper things.”
    7. (9-11) God may allow bad things to happen so that we turn from bad things.
      1. Q: What seem to be God’s options with us in aiding us to turn from wicked ways? {chastisement or blessings}
        1. Q: What would you say is the quickest way? (Then is He wrong to use it?)
      2. As we were reminded at the couples Valentine dinner, “You never lose when you put God 1st in your life!”
      3. Play on words in Hebrew:
        1. In ruins/Harev(9); Drought/Horev(11).
    8. (12) 23 days after the 1st sermonette they took specific steps to implement God’s message.
      1. Nor prophet saw a faster response to his message than did Haggai!
      2. Francis de Sales, “The test of a preacher is that his congregation goes away saying, not “what a lovely sermon!” but, “I will do something!”
      3. He is also known as “the prophet that said it w/bricks!”
Copyright Statement
These files are the property of Brian Bell.
Text Courtesy of Calvary Chapel of Murrieta. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Bell, Brian. "Commentary on Haggai 1". "Bell's Commentary". 2017.